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"We always put on comfortable clothes."

Translation:Siempre nos ponemos ropa cómoda.

April 18, 2018

54 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kitchendesigner

Once again caught by putting in an article..."LA ropa". Can someone tell me if it is always true that there is no article needed after a reflective verb?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/newms34

It seems completely random at this point. I've about given up trying to figure it out, as Duo seems intent on not teaching this


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Guillermo8330

It is "random" in the sense that it is based on convention, rather than "natural law". That doesn't make it incomprehensible just because it isn't immediately understandable to us. A year has gone by since my previous response. At this point I would say it isn't la ropa because it doesn't refer to a specific set of clothing, but to all comfortable clothing. Spanish adds the direct article (él/la/los/las) to general nouns when they are the subject of a sentence, but not when they are the direct object, as in this case.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PilgrimNorma

Thanks, Guillermo. I wish I knew how to give you a lingot. :'(


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Guillermo8330

Not to worry, your thanks is enough. Glad to have helped.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kelly721169

common usage is slang in any language


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Guillermo8330

I think the rule you propose--no articles after reflexive verbs--is too broad to be correct. But I honestly don't know why the direct article isn't used here.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Valerie823582

same question - why is it wrong to put 'la ropa cómoda' here - I thought i was being clever remembering to put it in! I'm sure i have been marked wrong for leaving out the article before.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sue977311

when I put on a coat, I had to use an article. But when I put on clothing, I don't. WHY???


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Guillermo8330

Sue, I thought about your question for a day and then it occurred to me that maybe your question answers itself. Notice how you refer to "a coat" (with the indefinite article), but "clothing" (without). It's because you are referring to a specific item in "a coat", but to a general class of items in "clothing".

Maybe it's the same in Spanish?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sue977311

That works for me! I'll try to put that into practice. Thanks!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sange860352

This is the thing I have the most trouble with. I found this article super helpful, especially the 7 tricks at the bottom. https://www.fluentu.com/blog/spanish/definite-and-indefinite-articles-in-spanish/ Seems like here, because the clothing is general and not countable, the article isn't needed.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Guillermo8330

I don't know, Valerie, except that DL prefers to use definite articles more sparingly than some other lesson systems. I'm sure the creators of DL have their reasons. And if you were emphasizing la ropa cómoda as opposed to la ropa formal, I suspect you would use the article.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Valerie823582

so it's not actually wrong? perhaps ok to use it either way?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Guillermo8330

Valerie, since I replied to you a year ago I have learned that Spanish uses definite articles less frequently than it did when I first studied the language a half-century ago. DL's usage is almost always the contemporary choice.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RichardSmi760243

I think it may be the verb ponerse does not take the definite article. https://espanol.lingolia.com/en/grammar/direct-indirect-articles

There is no definite article after llevar, and perhaps usar and ponerse are similar?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Guillermo8330

I don't think this is a special case for the verb ponerse and I don't see anything in your link that suggests it would be.

Rather, the reference in the prompt is to "comfortable clothes" in general. If the discussion were concerning a specific, comfortable outfit v. another uncomfortable outfit, then the definite article might be employed.

But in general, Spanish does not use the direct article with direct objects, unless, as I indicated, the reference is to a specific object or objects.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Readerly

is there a rule/norm about where "siempre" should go in a sentence? I wrote "Nos siempre ponemos...." and was marked wrong


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sange860352

Because "ponerse" is a reflexive verb, the conjugated verb (ponemos) and the reflexive pronoun (nos) need to stay together. In general, putting things like 'siempre', 'a veces', 'a menudo', etc. at the beginning of the sentence is a safe bet.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Guillermo8330

Thank you, Sange. You explained that so much more clearly than I did. (Seriously. I mean this literally.)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Guillermo8330

I'm not 100% sure, but generally one seems meant to keep a pronoun-indirect object with the verb. So I think you'd be okay with Siempre nos ponemos... but not Nos siempre ponemos...

On the other hand, siempre often comes between the subject and the pronoun+verb, i.e., Nosotros siempre nos ponemos...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Morgana139

Why is “Siempre nos ponemos la ropa cómoda” incorrect?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/IAmCrazyHope

Why is correct 'ropa comoda' instead of 'ropas comodas? It is referring to more than one article of clothing.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Guillermo8330

Hope, you sort of answered your own question. We wouldn't say "clothingS" in English. Likewise, la ropa isn't a count noun: it is the same whether the clothing at issue is one item or many.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SuzanneFon1

Confused! Originally, I answered "siempre ponemos ropa confortable," and it was marked wrong. Then, on the next try, I answered "siempre nos ponemos ropa confortable" and it was correct.

Isn't the "nos" optional?

And it does appear that "ponemos" and "usamos" are interchangeable here, as are "comoda and confortable."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Guillermo8330

No, the "nos" is not optional. Reflexive verbs always include an "object pronoun" (Anybody, is that the right term?): me, te, se or nos.

"Ponerse" and "usar" have the same relationship as "to put on" and "to wear" in English. One might use them interchangeably in some contexts, but they really aren't precisely the same.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Guillermo8330

To answer my own question, object pronoun is not the right term.

Reflexive verbs take reflexive pronouns (me, te, se, nos). Duh!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/newms34

As with everyone else, I am utterly confused as to why we cannot use "la" here. At this point, it seems that duo is literally just randomly choosing whether or not it "feels" like marking it correct. And yes, before you go the "but it's a computer program! It can't decide!", I'm fully aware of that. That does not mean that it's infallible.

In particular, this article https://www.spanishdict.com/guide/using-the-definite-article-in-spanish says that a similar example (la camisa fajada) does need the definite article!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Guillermo8330

I think the difference is that your example refers to a specific shirt: the one that is tucked in. The example in the prompt above is various "comfortable clothing", put on at various times. So it isn't any specific outfit and doesn't take a definite article.

But I readily admit I am still working on understanding when to use or not use the direct article.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Luchita347407

I was marked wrong with the above answer, and was shown "siempre nos usamos ropa comoda'. Not sure how you can use clothes except to wear them. Reported!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/scotologic

To wear is usar, to put on is ponerse. They are similar, but not the same.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JackWalsh212066

I was also marked as wrong typing in "ponemos" saying I should have used "usamos" despite it being written "Translation: Siempre nos ponemos ropa comoda" ...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/tommietuck1

My hints do not have symbols. c`omodo is the best I can do.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Guillermo8330

No, you can do better. You have two choices. Spanish only has two types of accent marks: the accent ague (´) and the tilde (˜).

To make the accent, press OPTION+e (which will insert the accent), then lift your fingers and press the letter (always a vowel in Spanish) you want accented. To make the tilde, press OPTION+n (which will insert the tilde), then lift your fingers and press either "n" or "N". These keystrokes work on a Mac. If you are on a PC, press ALT+e or ALT+n.

If you are on an Android, iPhone, PC or MacBook, a second way is to simply hold down the letter you want to accent (in Spanish, a vowel or n). After a second a tiny menu will appear and you can press the number of the accent you want.

The first method above is one you can get used to touch typing. The second may be easier at first, but you can never get the tiny menu to appear faster than it will.

I promise this will work on any device made in the past 10 to 15 or 20 years. So if it doesn't work at first, try again.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kelly721169

Clothes is plural. to translate is Las Ropas


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Guillermo8330

No! Clothes is singular in Spanish: la ropa. The best English equivalent is "clothing".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SueRavensc

Must Siempre be the first word in the sentence? I was marked incorrect for placing it second, though all the words were correct.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Guillermo8330

The DL computer doesn't have a complicated program. Basically, the course writer makes a list of correct answers and the computer looks for a straightforward match (sometimes allowing for one wrong letter in words that aren't the subject of the exercise).

I wish you had copied and pasted your answer here. I don't know what you mean by "placing it second." The expected answer is Siempre nos ponemos ropa cómoda. If you put siempre second in that sentence you would have split the indirect object pronoun and the verb (Nos siempre ponemos...) and that would have indeed been wrong.

But adverbs like siempre can usually go directly after the verb as well, as in Nos ponemos siempre ropa cómoda.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Annamay470647

Are all the people in we putting on the same garment of clothing? I thought it would be ropas since there are multiple people wearing clothes.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Guillermo8330

Think of ropa as "clothing" not "clothes". "We all put on comfortable clothing." Unless English isn't your first language, you wouldn't ask whether "we all put on the same garment?"

(I'm not trying to insult you. Your English seems excellent to me. I'm just giving you an English translation that is more helpful when dealing with ropa.)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RonPourcel

Why can I not say "nos siempre ponemos"? Can someone tell me please?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Guillermo8330

Because nos is the object of the reflexive ponemos, nos is NOT the subject of the sentence, as "we" is in English. Reflexive pronouns can go before the reflexive verb or after an infinitive, but you can't just stick "nos" at the beginning of a sentence because it reminds you of "We" in English. (In fact, "nos" is almost always translated as "us". Can you think of an English sentence that begins with "Us"?)

Note: "We" is implied by the conjugation of ponerse so it doesn't have to be included in the sentence.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/annmatthew8

Why is it wrong to sa nuestro siempre? Sorry if this has already been answered but it's tricky using a phone for this


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Guillermo8330

That just isn't where the vast majority of Spanish speakers put the adverb. Adverbs usually precede the noun--as in this case--or directly follow the verb.

Furthermore, you don't want the adjective nuestro, you want the direct object pronoun nos. And since the verb in question is reflexive (ponerse), it would be highly unusual to place the adverb between nos and ponemos. Nos ponemos... = "We put on ourselves..."

I believe Nos ponemos siempre ropa cómoda. is also correct. But I haven't done this exercise lately and can't remember what DL will accept.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CharlesHal227058

I responded "nosotros siempre nos ponemos ropa comida". What is wrong with that?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sue977311

“Comida” means food. I think you meant “Comoda.”


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Nethe1

Why not; las ropas confortables


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Valerie823582

The translation for clothes is la ropa not las ropas


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Guillermo8330

Valerie is correct. La ropa isn't a "count noun". It stays the same whether it refers to one item or many.

Think of it as "clothing", a non-count noun in English as well.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kelly721169

from english to spanish. Clothes is plural and it follows that spanish is ropas. Unless of course you want to use slang


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Guillermo8330

No, the word in Spanish--la ropa--is always singular and corresponds to the English "clothing" (also always singular).

Why would you assume that Spanish usage is a precise match to English usage? That isn't how languages work.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DGbor

"Clothes" is plural. Ropa is singular. An obvious mistake.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Guillermo8330

There is no mistake. "Clothes" is plural in English; la ropa is singular in Spanish. Yet they mean the same thing.

AS I WROTE BELOW AND DIRECTLY ABOVE YOU, think of la ropa as "the clothing" and you won't get confused.

I realize it isn't always possible to read an entire thread before you post; but it can't hurt to read a few posts above and below before you arrogantly announce that DL is wrong.

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