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"My wife loves listening to Spanish music."

Translation:A mi esposa le encanta escuchar la música española.

June 4, 2018

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Hopefully, this helps to explain gustar and encantar

In English, we commonly say "I like the dog" or "I love the dog." The English construction of this idea is "person - verb - subject."

In Spanish, there is no way in Spanish to say "I like" or "I love" in this way. (Saying "I love you" in a romantic sense uses different verbs, amar.) Instead, Spanish uses the verbs gustar and encantar.

To start with, gustar does not mean "to like." Gustar literally means "to please" as in "The dog pleases me." "A mi me gusta el perro" appears to use the same "person - verb - subject" construction as English "I like the dog." However, it literally translates to "To me - is pleasing - the dog" or "The dog pleases me."

Likewise, encantar does not mean "to love." Encantar literally means "to enchant" as in "The dog enchants me." "A mi me encanta el perro" appears to use the same "person - verb - subject" construction as English "I love the dog." However, it literally translates as "To me - is enchanting - the dog" or "The dog enchants me."

Good so far? Okay, now here comes a tricky part....


Because both gustar and encantar focus on what is being liked (rather than on the person who likes them) they conjugate according to what is being liked.

A mi me gusta el perro = The dog is pleasing to me = I like the dog

A mi me gustan los perros = The dogs are pleasing to me = I like the dogs

A mi me encanta el perro = The dog is enchanting to me = I love the dog

A mi me encantan los perros = The dogs are enchanting to me = I love the dogs

Still with me? Okay, now here's yet another tricky part....


Here's the construction:

Me gusta = I like

Nos gusta = We like

Te gusta = You (informal) like

Le gusta = He/she/you (formal) like

Les gusta: They / you (plural) like


A nostros nos gustan los perros = The dogs are pleasing to us = We like the dogs.

A ti te gusta el perro = The dog is pleasing to you = You like the dog

A ella le gusta el perro = The dog is pleasing to her = She likes the dog

A ellos les encantan los perros = The dogs are enchanting to them = They love the dogs

Because "me gusta" always means "I like" we generally drop the clarifying "a mi". If you use "a mi me gusta el perro" in Spanish it sounds like emphasis. As in how an American might say, "I don't know about you but I really like the dog." Instead, in Spanish we would generally use the simple form, "Me gusta el perro."

Same for nos gusta and te gusta.

However, you can see the problem with "le gusta" and "les gusta". Often the speaker needs to clarify just who "le" or "les" is referring to. So...

Me gusta el perro = I like the dog

Te gusta el perro = You like the dog

Le gusta el perro = [Who?] likes the dog? All you've told me is that someone [singular] likes the dog. I still don't know exactly who. Aunt Mary? A zombie? The neighbor's cat? Without context, I don't know.

Les gusta el perro = [Who?] like the dog. Same problem, just plural. Okay, great. Someone [plural] likes the dog. Who? My aunts? Zombies? All the cats? I don't know.

So we use "a [x]" to clarify and let us know exactly who likes the dog.

A mi padre le gusta el perro = To my father - is pleasing - the dog = The dog is pleasing to my father = My father likes the dog.

A mis padres les gusta le perro = To my parents - is pleasing - the dog = The dog is pleasing to my parents = My parents like the dog

~ And verbs? What if you like to do something? Always use the infinitive.

Me gusta tocar el piano = To me - is pleasing - to play - the piano = I like to play piano or I like playing the piano ~

Anyway, I hope this helps.


Nice, comprehensive explanation DamonMarty! Have some lingots.


Thank you for taking the time to write this all out. Once my head stops spinning, I'll reread it.


Thank you so much for this thorough explanation. So helpful!


Gracias! Totally helpful to understand why "a [x]" needed prior to "le gusta".


Good for beginner to intermediate. Thanks!


This was very helpful thank you!


Why do we need the "la" in front of música? Isn't it the act of LISTENING to the music - rather than the music itself - pleasing to his wife?

I was marked wrong with a similar sentence: "My grandma likes to read new books". I typed "A mi abuela le gusta leer los libros nuevos". It was marked wrong because (according to comments from others who also struggled with this) I put in the article "los" in front of libros. The READING is that which pleased her - not the books.

So...isn't this the same type of situation ... with the music?


YES!! And they're not consistent. It's driving me crazy. Have a lingot.


In some places they do not say la musica, so why is it la musica here? I agree with everyone and I don't think it is wrong either!


Why is "Mi esposa encanta escuchar la música española" incorrect?


Snarls, short answer: encanta is a verb like gusta.

It needs an indirect object pronoun before it. Le encanta escuchar la música española = He/she/you (formal) love(s) to listen to Spanish music = Listening to Spanish music is enchanting to him/her/you.

To clarify the le, an a/phrase is used. In this case, a mi esposa.

For review of object pronouns, the verb gustar, and other verbs like gustar, see studyspanish.com (Grammar Unit Four).


And once again, it's marcy65brown to the rescue! Thanks for the link. Just checked it out and will go back right now and sign up. Gotta give you a lingot first though. ツ


Thanks! That helps a lot. Have a lingot :)


I think it's because Duolingo is trying to teach us about the personal "A" I hope this link helps https://studyspanish.com/grammar/lessons/persa


This is not the personal "a." As explained in the link you posted, the personal "a" is used before a direct object. "A mi esposa is a prepositional phrase used as an indirect object to clarify to whom the "le" refers.


Belated thanks for the lingot-worthy link.


@jwalicek Thanks! That put it in perspective! I'll try to pass that on if I see others having trouble, too.


Super link, great thing to use as a supplement to my DuoLingo


A serious error? Will people be injued or insulted. Just thought that the wording was a little bit overboard


"Mi esposa le encanta" should be what you're looking for


I am curious about using "la música" vs. "música." Is "la" required because "Spanish music" is something particular while "music" is a general category?


In this exercise, it is not the music that she loves. What she loves is listening to it. As used here, "to Spanish music" is a prepositional phrase used as an adjective (I believe). As such, I do not believe the "la" should be used. I have contacted Duo about this.


I just have to ask- how did you "contact" Duo?? Can you actually report a specific problem somewhere? Other than in "reporting"? Thanks.


Thank you, George. They are now accepting the answer without "la" although "la" is still shown as the correct answer.


As of July 2020, the answer without "la" was marked incorrect....I'm totally confused, as the previous sentence with a similar structure didn't use it!


Exactly! And it's driving me nuts!


I agree. In previous exercises in this very unit (Family 4) "escuchar" I'm sure was translated as "to listen to". SpanishDict also agrees. So the phrase was "escuchar música" to mean "to listen to music". Really confused now. Anyone


I am frustrated that it's not accepting marida for wife.


There is no noun marida in Spanish. Esposo and esposa are paired, but marido doesn't have a feminine equivalent. So they are correct to reject it.


When looking into the meaning of eschuchar it is pretty clear that the way a Spanish speaker talks about listening is expressed using a different concept than an English speaker. So you can not simply translate word for word from English to spanish and be right. Eschuchar means to listen to. More similar to the English word hearing IMO. So I think the english translation should be more like "Hearing spanish music is enchanting to my wife". But that would be an uncommon way for an English speaker to say that concept. So duolingo uses the common expression of the concept in english and the common expression of the concept in spanish which are not constructed the same.


How is "my wife" the direct object in this sentence? Still get confused over the personal "a". Thanks.


It's not. "My wife" is the indirect object here.


I find gustar/encantar make more sense if I think of them as meaning "to be liked/loved". It makes it clearer when to use the personal a and makes conjegation more intuitive.


¿Por qué 'Mi esposa le encanta escuchar la música española' no es correcto?


I wish there was a way to restart a section. I really have no idea what I am doing at this point.


Why is the "A: necessary before 'mi esposa? I thought that was used only when a given name was given, to be identified with a pronoun which followed.


The a is to make it an indirect object. All nouns need it.


When exactly do i use A when identifying the person I'm confused, sometimes its mi esposa and then A mi esposa


shireen58... read DanielConCasco & George_Gibson in the forum (above where you posted) for helpful explanations on this confusing topic.

It is easy to confuse the use of a as a preposition, with the other lessons about "the personal a" used when people or pets are direct objects in Spanish grammar.


Still have no clue. How can I repeat a section so I can actually learn it instead of guessing my way through.


I would like to know the function of"A mi'esposa; it frustrates me a lot!


Literally, it would be "Listening to Spanish music is pleasing to my wife." The "a mi esposa" is "to my wife". It's an indirect object.


If you go to the Duolingo hints and tips button for this topic, Duo gives a very clear explanation.


I'm Sooooo confused... One minute, use la musica... next minute, don't use la musica... Same sentence only the person who is listening changes.... At this point, I don't know which is right... Frustrated


"A mi esposa le encanta escuchar a la musica espanola" is not accepted. The spanish word for "to" is shown as "a la" or "a" or "en" when I place the cursor over it. Why would "a la" not be accepted here.


Because "escuchar" includes "to." "Escuchar a" would be "to listen/listening to to . . . ."


Is the "la" needed here? And if so, why? I remember in a different lesson something along "A mi hermana le gusta jugar deportes" did not have "los" before "deportes", and the explanation was that "jugar" is actually the subject of the sentence, not "deportes". Also, in previous exercises, I'm fairly confident I've seen "[...] le encanta escuchar musica" without a "la" before "musica" which seemed consistent with the explanation I read for "jugar". So, why in this case the subject is "musica espanola" and not "escuchar"? (And sorry...no Spanish keyboard).


I do not believe the "la" is needed here. If you want to say She likes music, you would say A ella le gusta la musica. In that case you need need the definite article "la" (the). But in this exercise (and the one about jugar deportes), it is not the music that she likes. What she likes is listening to it. Therefore, you say "A mi esposa le encanta escuchar música española." This is the way it was done in at least two exercise and I believe it is the way it should have been done here. I believe the Duo translation is incorrect in this case. That is my opinion and I will listen to other views. I really want to know the answer. I have contacted Duo about this. (05 mayo 19)


Ok so the phrase just before I had to translate that my grandpa likes to listen to Italian music, and my answer "musica italiana" without the "la" in front of it was accepted. So here I wrote "musica espanola" and was marked wrong for not using "la" in front of it. At a total loss... anyone can enlighten me?


Perhaps la música italiana would have been accepted, BorisAloha? Did you try that? See my reply to Vinny, below, for what has been working for me.


My trouble is, I don't always know where to put the la and the le. I often put them in the wrong place. How do I correct that?


Encanta (gusta) means it enchants (it please). The word in front of it is an indirect object that tells who it enchants.

me (me), te (you), le (you formal singular, he, she), nos (we), les (you formal plural)

me encanta = it enchants me, te encanta = it enchants you, le encanta = it enchants you, he or she, etc.

When you use le encanta, you are not sure if it is usted, él or ella. To clarify that you put the clarification at the beginning of the sentence. If le stands for my wife, you say A mi esposa le encanta. That means it is enchanting to my wife. And then you state what is is that enchants her.

For more information follow this link



I wrote "a mi marida le encanta escuchar a la musica espanol" and the correction message was ambiguous...i suspect that "a la" and "espanol" were incorrect but don't understand why, but that marida would be an acceptable alternative to esposa?


Chris, you are correct that escuchar a is incorrect--escuchar already means "to listen to."

La música is correct if you describe the kind of music, here española (because música is a feminine noun and requires an adjective with a feminine ending).

But, according to Danielconcasco and other learners, there is no such word as marida, only marido, which can't refer to "my wife."


Explain the function of "A" in A mi esposa" Please!


jstrickert, a mi esposa is "to my wife," the indirect object in this sentence. Actually, it is only clarifying the indirect object pronoun because Le encanta escuchar la música española would be grammatically correct on its own.


Why can't I use marida for wife?


There is no noun in Spanish marida.

Esposo y esposa

Marido y mujer


Why is the infinitive required for escuchar? That would be "She loves to listen" and the sentence says that she feels enchanted while "listening" so wouldn't it be conjugated?


Maybe it's already in here somewhere, but my question concerns the "le encanta" aspect. I understand that it is reflexive like gustarse, but why isn't it LA encanta for "A mi esposa" (feminine)?


Well that took me 17 attempts. With all those mistakes i really must be learning a lot!


why A before Mi esposa and not before LA MUSICA? I am so confused about a. It seems like it is at the first of a sentence sometimes and the next it is not. AUGH!


I used the word escuchar and was counted as wrong. The word oir was used instead. Why oh why???


You used the wrong word. A mi mujer le fascina escuchar la música española. (I used 'le gusta' - why is this wrong?)


Gustar is more "like" than "love". At least that's how Duo wants us to distinguish between the two.


The previous exercise's sentence was almost identical to this one, and ended in "...escuchar música", whereas this exercise's sentence ends in "...escuchar la música española". Is anybody able to explain why the first sentence requires the article "la" while the other doesn't?


Here is the way I explain it to myself, Vinny: It's Quiero escuchar música ("I want to listen to music"). Música is a very general category, therefore no article. (There are grammatically sophisticated people on DL who can define the kind of noun música is. Those same people will probably say música in this case really means "some music," so you really aren't omitting a "determiner," but that makes less sense to me. )

EDIT this first paragraph, 3 months later: I now understand a little bit more. Le encanta escuchar música would indicate "some music". That's because "all music that exists (the All)" would require la. It's only when you're talking about some unspecified quantity or, here, unspecified kind of somethng, but less than "the All," that you can omit the article.

But, it's Quiero escuchar la música española ("I want to listen to Spanish music"). Música española is a specific kind of music, so it requires a "determiner." The determiner is la in this case, but it might also be esta or even tu.

So, it would be Quiero escuchar música. (unspecified amount or kind but less than "the All") AND
Quiero escuchar la música española (specific).

The same logic works for A mi esposa le encanta escuchar música. (unspecifed) AND
A mi esposa le encanta escuchar la música española (specific).

Disclaimer: There are those on DL discussions who will explain this properly. They confuse me, however. The above distinction usually works for me and I just try to remember any exceptions (which there are, of course).


la should not have been required as it is neither a general music or 'the music' but its specific 'spanish music'. therefore it should have been ' escuchar musica espanola'. a previous excercise did not use 'la' for italian music...duo is inconsistent here or not giving enough explanations...after about 25 excercises, i have started to feel how unguided learning can be bad...perhaps i should buy a good book now


Duolingo is very consistent here. When using verbs like gustar and encantar, you'll see the article. These verbs read "backwards" to English speakers.


I do not feel they have been consistent with this "rule."


There was an exercise that wanted us to translate "Laura loves to play sports" as "A Laura le encanta jugar deportes" (no definite article!). If you include a definite article, it will be marked wrong as of 10/26/2020.


according to me 'la' should not be used here as it's 'spanish music' -a specific music instead of a general music reference. Duo accepted the sentence even when i did not use 'la'. so, i must be right for now


It's about Spanish music in general, hence the la.


Or, "Spanish music" is the subject of the sentence, therefore requires a "determiner" (here, la).

(Some people understand things with one explanation, others with another. Should be okay as long as both ways lead to the correct result. :) )


I like that explanation; that will help me. Thanks.


Duo marked me correct without "la" in my answer.


My answer is correct. Iwhy has it been marked wrong


Im confused, one sentence in this lesson we had to translate something along the lines of "Mi abuelo le encanta escuchar musica" which translates to My grandpa loves listening to Music. But now we have to translate this into Spanish and we need the "la" before "musica." Can someone explain?


Two things, Logan--

First, I doubt Duo accepted Mi abuelo le encanta . . . . It would have to be A mi abuelo le encanta. . . . (See good explanations for this, near the top of the discussion--especially marcy65brown's and DamonMarty's.)

Second, you can think of the need for la música española in two ways, either:

  • Spanish music is a particular (specific) kind of music, and specific nouns require la, OR

  • In Spanish, if a noun is modified by an adjective, you need el or la, as well. Here, the noun música is modified by the adjective española, so you say la música española.

EDIT, a year later--slight modification of my second point: It's possible to consider musica española as one entity, in which case the la wouldn't be necessary. It's my understanding that in the last year Duo has decided to accept both A mi esposa le encanta escuchar la música española and A mi esposa le encanta escuchar música española. That decision makes sense to me now.


Why is that "el" encanta not just encanta like on this example ?


I'm having difficulty understanding whether "escuchar" means "to listen" or "to listen to" or "to hear" in this lesson. My understanding determines whether I would use "a la" "la" or no articles at all.


i wrote "a mi esposa le encanta escuchar a la musica espanola" and got marked wrong. is that because i put "a" after escuchar?


I am really confused, where should I use "la"?

Example 1: "My wife loves listening to Spanish music." Translation: A mi esposa le encanta escuchar la música española.

Example 1: "My grandfather likes listening to Italian music." Translation: A mi abuelo le gusta escuchar música italiana.


Have I done more than my daily lesson. complete


On a previous excercise using "la" with "música mexicana" was incorrect, but "la" with "música española" is good here now? This app is anything but clear.


My answer matched exactly the stated answer, word for word, letter for letter, but said it was incorrect! Software glitch, or am I suddenly dyslexic?


Ha! I left out "escuchar"! Ouch!


Why is it not ".... a la música española"?


Why can't we comment on the tips you occasionally get when you make a mistake? The previous time I had this question I omitted the "la." The tip that cam up was "don't forget to add the "de" between the owner and the object to show possession (or whatever the exact wording was). It then gave an example with a sentence not related to this one that I missed. Now, I understand that they can't have a tip for every situation, but had I followed that tip I would have been wrong. The tip I received should not be connected to this sentence. This time I marked "something else is wrong," but that's really no help. For all DL knows that could mean there's an issue with the kerning or I'm just not satisfied with the shade of charcoal that the font is in.


I have scrolled through this thread and I still don't quite understand. I've been studying spanish in school and if I remember correctly, I've been taught that it should be "A mi esposa le encanta escuchar a música española" not "la música española". Could someone explain to me why what I wrote is incorrect. Thank you!


I suppose the use of the "A" before "mi esposa" or similar will have to be learned by repetition. I've read the posts below and am struggling with the logic. The closest I can get is with marcy65brown - using the A to clarify the le - but here the "mi esposa" doesn't seem to need clarification.


Why is "a mi marida" incorrect but "a mi esposa" is correct, when duolingo has just been teaching me marido/marida as alternative words for husband/wife?


Duolingo uses marido, but not marida, since that's not a word in Spanish.

Esposo y esposa

Marido y mujer


Oh ok I see (sort of). But mujer is also woman?


Yes, it has both meanings.


I wrote "marida" for wife rather than "esposa" and it was marked incorrect.


There is no noun marida in Spanish.


Ok. Why is it "escuchar musica" in one case and "escuchar la musica" in another?


Thanks that was very helpful


Why is it not escuchar a música española (to listen to...)?


Why is there la musica and in same lesson musica Italiana does not have la?

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