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"Ella escribe una carta para el jefe."

Translation:She is writing a letter for the boss.

June 1, 2018

110 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/prompto99

Isn't it: She writes a letter for the boss?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/marcy65brown

Both are correct. If yours wasn't accepted yet, use the Report button to see if they will add it to the database.


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

Both are not correct. The point of this program is to learn Spanish, which includes learning how to conjugate verbs, and in this case the conjugation is simply incorrect.


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

vascotuga251 and marcy65brown are indeed correct. Spanish often uses the simple present tense where English would use the present progressive. When Spanish does use the present progressive (está escribiendo) it conveys a sense of "right now" or "at this very moment" which isn't necessarily the case in English. Therefore either conjugation is acceptable here.


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

"She is writing a letter for the boss." Does this mean that she is writing a letter that will be given to the boss, or that she is writing a letter on behalf of the boss? I think in English it could be either way, but I was wondering if in Spanish there is a distinction?


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

Exactly my question! Does the Spanish sentence mean 'on behalf of the boss, to someone else' or 'her personal letter to the boss' or possibly both?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ALLintolearning3

Scroll down as I am wrong here (She is doing it for him, so that he doesn’t have to. She might be his secretary after all. If she were writing a letter to the boss, then it would be “al jefe.”) Apparently, “por” is used for on behalf of the boss.


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

"Una carta para el jefe" can also be a letter that's going to be received by the boss. It's ambiguous, just like in English.

(In Spanish, a and para are often interchangeable.)

EDIT: A few months later I don't even know what I wanted to say with this comment anymore. Para means that the boss is going to receive that letter, which can be translated as "to the boss" or "for the boss" in English.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ALLintolearning3

I really wouldn't use "for" to mean "to" here in English. Most secretaries that are doing something for the boss are doing it because he is the boss and has given that to them to do. Isn't there a way to put "to" as the meaning in the answer at the top of this page so that fewer people will be confused?


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

If she is writing a letter "to the boss" I believe the translation should either "al jefe" or "para el jefe." If she is write a letter "for" or "on behalf of" the boss I believe the translation should be "por el jefe."
Or is "para" in this example ambiguous?


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

Para generally refers to a goal, meaning that the boss is supposed to be the recepient of the letter.

Por here would mean that the boss told her to write it.


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

I wish our comments have date on it


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

They do (on the web version), but not on the app versions of Duolingo (on Android, at least).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ALLintolearning3

It doesn’t have the date, just how long it has been since you commented.


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

and ofcourse a ❤❤❤❤❤❤❤ notification when a user commented on your comment. Come on Duolingo. Keep UP :D


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

For, or to? Or 'para' means either of those things and we can't tell?


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

In this case you can use either word. The meaning here is that she writes a letter and the boss will receive it.

If you want to say that she writes a letter "for" the boss, i.e. on behalf of him or because he told her to, you need to use por in the Spanish sentence.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jr0007
  • 1521

Ella escribe una carta para el jefe = She writes a letter for the boss

Ella está escribiendo una carta para el jefe = She is writing a letter for the boss


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AIDENBRINK2

Is she writing a letter FOR the boss, as in addressed to the boss from the secretary, or is she dictating a letter for him?


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

The use of para indicates that it's a letter that the boss is going to receive. If she were writing that letter on behalf of her boss, you'd use por instead.

  • para - for goals
  • por - for reasons

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ScottMurra386236

Marked wrong for an exact copy of the correct answer


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ALLintolearning3

If they provided more than one possible answer only one should be used, unless you have the multiple choice in which you must choose all correct answers. You could take a screenshot and send a bug report in through the help button below.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/latoya983566

There was no the to choose from, just the letter a which is not write


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ALLintolearning3

Actually, “una” = “a”, so it is “a letter”. Are you saying that you didn’t have “the” to use with “boss” ? On some screens, you must scroll down to see all the words to choose from.


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

it told me this what does this mean? You used the indefinite "a" here, instead of the definite "the".


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

Apparently that you mixed up articles. The sentence is talking about an unspecific letter written to a specific boss, so "a letter" and "the boss".


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

Google translate says "she writes"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ALLintolearning3

Google translate goes word by word and sometimes that won't be good. The words "ella escribe" can mean "she writes", "she does write" or "she is writing."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jaime328530

HOW IN THE WORLD DOES ELLA SOUND LIKE AJA? THIS WOMAN DRIVES ME NUTS. IT SHOULD BE EY-YA. NO?

I SEE SOMETIMES "YO" IS PRONOUNCED "JO". IF IT'S GOING TO BE THIS WAY IN EVERY "Y" WORD THEY MUST MAKE US HEAR THEM BOTH WAYS BEFORE WE LEARN THEM.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ALLintolearning3

Yes, both ways are always possible depending on region. Try listening to native speakers here: https://forvo.com/search/ella%20yo/


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CHANSON968356

The female speaker is not doing a great job


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Huck566512

For the boss baby?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ALLintolearning3

Did he hire a secretary then?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ALLintolearning3

It’s what secretaries do.


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

I got NO audio at all for this problem, and I couldn't "report" it. What's going on?


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

You probably lost your connection briefly during the lesson.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Margaret532718

My response of she writes a letter was not accepted 9/22


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ALLintolearning3

Well hopefully your answer was not that short. “She writes a letter for the boss.” should be added as correct. I am not sure though if it should be. I would say “She writes letters for the boss.”, but if there were just one that would not be a generalization or a habitual action and so I would be more likely to use “She is writing a letter for the boss.” I guess I could come up with a scenario to make it possible. “What does she do if the boss wants her to write a letter? She writes a letter for the boss.” This is kind of reaching, don’t you think?


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

Same here, 06/02/2020. I responded "she writes a letter for the boss" and it was not accepted. Looks like this still hasn't been changed to include this as an acceptable response


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AbhishekRa145287

she writes a letter for boss . whats wrong in it ?


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

The boss really needs some kind of article.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Marco962533

Ok, please dont use that female voice on mine anymore please. That thing's pronunciation is worse than mine.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rohr889319

When you listen to the normal speed it sounds like 'una' but when you listen to the slow version it sounds like 'la'


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Tony979198

Why is "she writes her boss a letter" wrong??? Doesn't it sound better than what is currently proposed as the correct answer?


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

No, it doesn't really sound better. But it should be acceptable, too.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/David485162

If Incan only remember next time.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Steve544104

Last time I suggest is writing I was marked WRONG but now its ok -- BE CONSISTENT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This is hard to learn when the answer changes randomly...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ALLintolearning3

It depends on context though. What was the other complete sentence? Also, a correct answer can be reported as also correct, which means that if it was not accepted previously, someone could have since reported it and then it could later be accepted as correct.


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

It's jolly hard to hear the difference between 'ella escribe' and 'él escribe' when they're spoken at speed, and there is no context to be able to tell them apart.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/EverettWoi1

listen to doulingo song on youtoube!!! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vYagKKZPrRI ...CREEPY!!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jaime328530

THE FEMALE VOICE GARBLES AND STICKS TOGETHER SO MUCH I CAN NEVER INTERPRET EXACTLY WHAT SHE SAYS. SHE MAKES RAP MUSIC SOUND LIKE SYMPHONY.

TO BE FAIR, MY SON SPEAKS PRETTY FLUENT SPANISH AND IN HIS JOB, IF SOMEONE IS UPSET HE PUTS ON A NATIVE HISPANIC BECAUSE HE CANNOT FOLLOW IT.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Christine546191

Dúo needs to make up its mind about this. If it is ‘she is writing’ then surely we should be using the gerund, escribiendo!


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

English and Spanish handle their progressive forms very differently. While English requires the present progressive in some situations, in Spanish it's always optional to use the "estar + gerundio" form.


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

Why do her double "l"s sound like "j"s? I thought they were supposed to sound like a "y".


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

I do not like you covering up the mistakes. It works better if we can see our mistake and the correct version. This does not work for me.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ALLintolearning3

This affects more than one sentence and Duolingo is not looking at the user discussion for individual sentences, so you should go up and create a discussion in the main discussion forum and use the topic “Troubleshooting.”


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Stefos10

I wrote "her boss" and was correct, though the Spanish was el jefe. You should correct it.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Iyz6SMpG

Correct is "writes" You have taken present tense and want us to translate to present progressive. Tsk tsk


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

The Spanish Progressive form is used much more rarely than the English Progressive, especially in the present tense. Unless it's important that she's currently in the middle of writing, the Spanish Simple Present is preferred.


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

"para el jefe" was tranlated as "to the boss" by Duo while their spanish version sounded identical, i.e. para el jefe.. Any suggestions?


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

I'm not sure what the issue is. In both expressions the boss is the (intended) receiver of the letter. That's what para does.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ALLintolearning3

In English “ for the boss” can be either “to the boss” or “ on behalf of the boss” and it is used more often for the second, which you have said would use “por”.


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

About her month long vacation


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/GloriaMcFa2

I am sorry for hitting the wrong keys.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/caleb._.kraemer7

Please donate a lingot to me!!!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Skizy6

If para can mean "to" or "for" (according to the tap-translation) how do you differentiate between them? Is it strictly contextual or are there conditions where it means a certain one?

Also when I use Google translate for the word "para" I get 11 translations of different prepositions.. that just confused me further


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

Skizy, that's why it's generally not useful to translate prepositions directly. You should rather look at the purpose of each English preposition and the look which Spanish preposition serves the same purpose.

Para has just four base applications, so it's a good place to start:

It's used to mark the recipient or beneficiary of an action.

  • Hice este pastel para ti. - I made this cake for you.
  • Una mesa para tres, por favor. - A table for three, please.

It's used to talk about the purpose of an action.

  • Leo mucho para aprender la lengua. - I read a lot in order to learn the language.
  • Juego para ganar. - I play to win.

It's used to mark the goal of a movement. (Para is interchangeable with a in this case.)

  • Vamos para la playa. - We're going to the beach.
  • Este tren va para Madrid. - This train is going towards Madrid.

It's used to talk about deadlines and some timeframes.

  • Necesitamos los documentos para lunes. - We need the documents by Monday.
  • Soy su maestro para hoy. - I'm your teacher for today.

In the original sentence, para is used to mark the boss as the receiver of the letter. You could translate it as "to" or "for" here. But if you say "She is writing a letter for the boss" and take it as "on behalf of the boss", it would use a different preposition in Spanish, por.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jerb571526

I wrote, "She writes a card for the boss.". I feel like this also should be correct.


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

Jerb, the type of "card" that you write is called tarjeta in Spanish. A carta is generally a letter.


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

Without turtle mode this one is very hard. It sort of cuts of the endings of half the words on normal speed.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RogerioPer47008

Both "to" and "for" should be accepted since it's a duality. Para means both things in spanish. Also 'write' and 'is writing' should both be accepted. I don't use the word bank, so I could write it either way...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/John747

How would you say that she is writing a letter TO the boss? Is it the same?


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

John, yes, you could express that as "Ella escribe una carta para el jefe" or "Ella le escribe una carta al jefe." In both cases, the boss is the intended receiver.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Despina426542

I lost a heart writing the correct answer which was taken as a mistake and it is not the first time! Now i have to start again from the beginning!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ShirleyHop4

Sorry I did get it wrong


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Andrew141802

It says 'type what you hear' not 'translate this sentence'.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ALLintolearning3

Each person may have different instructions for different exercises for the same sentence and still be sent here.


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

Honestly frustrating, word for answers and they're wrong.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Alyssa385161

Shouldn't the verb be in present tense


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ALLintolearning3

Both the simple present tense and the present continuous tense are present tenses. https://www.thoughtco.com/ways-spanish-english-verb-tenses-differ-3079929


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/rickadams14

message and letter are the same thing


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DanielMori200471

she is writing the boss a letter should be accepted


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ALLintolearning3

Wouldn't that be "Ella le escribe una carta al jefe." ?

Para = for


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/tinykitty4

Ugh I can barely understand what she's saying; the lady always slurrs her words and it's really annoying |:(


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

She writes the letter for the boss is correct or you haven't explained Spanish passive voice


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ALLintolearning3

No, it must be "a letter". This sentence has nothing to do with passive voice.

"Ella escribe" Spanish simple present can mean "She writes" English simple present, "She is writing" English present continuous or "She does write" English present emphatic form. We use our English present continuous form more often than the other two, but in Spanish they use their present progressive form only if they are in the middle of doing something at that moment. "Ella está escribiendo" would mean that she has the pen in her hand and is currently writing right now.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sargent2

Over analizing is frustrating


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ALLintolearning3

This is vague. What is your problem? What did you put for your answer and which instructions were you given?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ALLintolearning3

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