"Señorita, siéntese cerca de la puerta."

Translation:Miss, sit near the door.

June 20, 2018

77 Comments
This discussion is locked.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/OzHey1

I think "Miss, sit by the door" should be accepted, correct me if I'm wrong.


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

It could. "Sit down by the door" would sound better to me, but that might be personal taste.


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

I think its because the sentence is using the reflexive form, (to sit down), rather than the transitive (to sit something on)

https://www.spanishdict.com/compare/sentarse/sentar


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

Can someone please tell me the difference between siéntese and sentarse? They are both formal and mean sit/sit down. Thanks.


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

First read through this page: https://www.spanishdict.com/conjugate/sentarse

What you are asking about is the difference between the "Affirmative imperative for usted" and the infinitive, which is the form the verb takes when you are talking about the act itself rather than saying that somebody is doing it.

When we say that "siéntese" is the "affirmative imperative for usted", we mean that it is used as a command or a polite request – that is, when you are telling "usted" what they need to do.

  • Señorita, siéntese cerca de la puerta. = Miss, sit by the door.
  • Señor Gómez, la presentación comenzará pronto. Siéntese, por favor. = Mr. Gómez, the presentation will begin soon. Please sit down.

The informal equivalent (the "affirmative imperative for tú") is "siéntate" (note the "-a" ending on the verb stem and the reflexive "te" attached instead of "se").

  • Sara, ¡siéntate ahora mismo! = Sara, sit down right now!

The form "sentarse" is the infinitive, so it is neither formal nor informal in and of itself. Sometimes in English we might speak of the act of sitting independently of the person who actually does it, such as "sitting down" or "when someone sits down". These independent/passive forms generally map to the infinitive. In this example, we are talking about "to sit down" as a thing without saying that anyone is actually doing it:

  • Es aburrido sentarse todo el día. = It's boring to sit down all day long.

"To sit down" is a thing, and that thing is boring.

  • ¿Estás loco? Sentarse es relajante. = Are you crazy? Sitting down is relaxing.

Again, we are speaking of sitting down as its own thing rather than saying that anyone is doing it. "Sitting down" is a thing, and that thing is relaxing. Alternatively, you can parse "Sentarse" as "For one to sit down", which has more complicated English grammar I don't want to get into. In the end, it amounts to the same thing.

When used together with another verb, the "-se" ending will change to match the pronoun that it reflects, which will just happen to still be "se" for él, ella, usted, ellos, ellas, and ustedes.

  • Quiero sentarme. = I want to sit down.
  • Ella puede sentarse. = She can sit down.
  • Nos gustaría sentarnos. = We would like to sit down. (Literally: It would please us to sit down.)
  • Ellos realmente deberían sentarse. = They really should sit down.

In all of these cases, note that the reason that sentarse wasn't conjugated is that it isn't the first verb (I've put that one in italics), and only the first verb gets fully conjugated to match the subject's person and number, the verb tense, and the sentence's mood.


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

i was curious if "Miss, seat yourself near the door" would be accepted. It is not. You have to write sit down, not seat yourself. Of course, in English, both are correct.


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

Or even "Miss, sit by the door" would be very natural in English and should be accepted.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ArgleBargle1961

Agreed. As a native English speaker, I would never normally use the "correct" answer. I would say "sit by the door." If I intended her to guard the door (the unlikely case) I might say "near."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/eesan2

I had the same curiosity. I was marked wrong. Not only is it correct to say "seat yourself near the door" it is a closer translation.


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

Why is it siéntese and not siéntete? "Miss, YOU sit near the door" Shouldn't the verb end with "te" since it is referring to a second person?


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

Charlie, we're addressing a second person here, but we're doing it in a formal manner. We call the lady señorita, so we need to use usted grammar. "Siéntese usted."

Also note that the form would be siéntate. The conjugation of the root verb also changes.


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

Makes perfect sense! Thank you for your comment


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/eesan2

Sientete is informal sientese is formal. Starting with "miss" means that DL is expecting a formal sentence.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/eesan2

Sientete is informal sientese is formal. Starting with "miss" means that DL is expecting a formal sentence.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rox624830

could "young lady, sit near the door" be correct? "Miss" is a term no longer used by most women


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ArgleBargle1961

There are some social things that just don't hop well between languages. I hear what you're saying. 40 years ago I might have addressed a 16 year old waitress by "miss" while today I will say "ma'am." I don't do this to prove any point; to me it just seems more normal now. On the flip side, I find myself telling native Spanish speakers that directly calling women "chicks" isn't really socially acceptable in English speaking places even though "chicas" is perfectly decent in Spanish speaking locales.

I shall wax political/social/philosophical: This is the trouble I have with the PC police. Most people are decent. People don't mean anything bad when we say "ma'am" or "miss." Me personally, I take a moment to note the name of my waitstaff (notice I didn't say "waiter" or "waitress" LOL) so I can just say "Maria" instead of "hey, you!" Tip: if you want to be treated really well in a restaurant, try that. And now that I have wandered a few layers deep in this subject, I will direct any reader to a fantastic video about saying the wrong thing by accident in Spanish: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TKKCVctGucA


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Gabriella840815

what I find also unbelievable is that Duolingo doesn't take an official position in the discussion and, above all, does never take into consideration the results of the discussion.


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

They don't check the discussions necessarily. They DO always check reports, though.


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

The discussion is only there for the learners to ask and answer questions. Duolingo staff doesn't usually look in here.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rick392366

"Lady, sit near the door" = not accepted.

Okay, so a "Señorita" is not "lady".


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

A señorita is (at least traditionally) an unmarried woman, nowadays usually a young adult. "Miss" or "young lady" might work better here.


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

I said, Miss, sit yourself near the door" and it was marked wrong.


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

You can say "seat yourself", but "sit" is intransitive. You can't sit anyone, not even yourself.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Gabriella840815

another "senorita" .... and another "mistake" ! In Italian we have the right traslation, that is signorina, that can be used either in formal or informal speach or writing. Is crazy that duolingo put everywhere senorita and the traslation is always wrong: when you put lady or young lady is wrong,when you put miss is wrong. It could depend on the different oridin of the "teachers", but for us, students, is very difficult to learn something. I find much more useful the discussion with English/American speakers....


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/frbs01

I answered "lady, sit near the door" and my answer was wrong. 09 october 2018. I won't talk much because of the other comments in this thread. But I agree with what everybody else said about the issue regarding translating the word "señorita" to english. It's a way of speaking no one uses anymore.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Aquanex2

Why is the "de" needed in "de la puerta"?


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

It's actually needed for the expression "cerca de", which is how Spanish says "near to".


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

Not sure, but it´s completely incorrect to say the sentese without the "de".


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

My understanding is that “cerca”’s literal meaning functions more like “in the vicinity” than “near”. You can have something “in the vicinity of the door”, but you can’t say “in the vicinity the door”. The need for “de” in the Spanish is similar.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Bruce768614

Duo also accepts: "Young lady, sit down near the door."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ingrid244405

My answer was "Miss, sit down by the door." Duolingo's answer: Miss, sit near the door. THE was underlined. What the _? I have no idea what duolingo is correcting here....


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

The correction is a bit freaky. It takes the sentence you wrote and underlines the mistaken word. Then it overwrites your sentence with the correct sentence while keeping the line in place.

Apparently it didn't like "by", but that word should be good here.


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

Yeah, the underlining glitches quite a bit. My guess would be that they really want you to use “near” for “cerca de” and reserve “by” and “next to” for “al lado de”. But it’s just a guess.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MaryLarson12

I think you're right, crf. I wrote: "Miss, sit next to the door" and it was marked wrong.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/valerie307480

why not 'miss you are sitting near the door'


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

The Spanish sentence is definitely an instruction to do something, not a casual offer of information. Dropping the imperative mood is more polite, but it seems like too big of a change to the meaning.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Amours40

"Sit down" seems correcy to me


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Stevo2k50

I think seniorita could be also translated as young lady


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

When you're addressing the young lady, "Miss" is usually the better option.


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

Never accept the first hint on the hover hints - they have been wrong 100% of the time for the past couple months! I changed 'near' to 'nearest' after I checked that, which, of course, was marked incorrect. I have finally learned.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kelly714030

Sit close to the door? Wrong??


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

Kelly, it's an appropriate translation.


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

"miss, sit next to the door." is wrong. i am sad.


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

I think that “next to” is too strong for “cerca de” and that the Spanish would have used “al lado de” for that meaning. She is instructed to sit only generally close to the door, not immediately next to it.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MelanieM422

Miss, sit closer to the door. Is the i think it should be.


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

This just says “cerca” (close), not “más cerca” (closer).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Max643597

"Miss, sit by the door" should be accepted; it's colloquial English for "near."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Max643597

"Miss, sit by the door" should be accepted. It's colloquial Midwestern English meaning "near."


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

I don’t feel very strongly either way, here, but as I have indicated here and here, I think the problem is that “by”, “beside”, and “next to” are usually thought to be immediately next to it, which corresponds to “al lado de”, while the slightly broader “close to” and “near” are probably a better fit for “cerca de”.

But the term “by” is actually a little tricky, because I think you are right to argue that some folks will use it to mean merely “near” while I would only ever use it to mean “next to”, so you might report it to see if the course content creators agree.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/marypose99

Why not "next to the door"?


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

I would expect “al lado de” (literally “at the side of”, or just “beside”) for “next to”. This just said “cerca de”, which suggests the general proximity, without being restricted to immediately adjacent. “Near” and “close to” do a better job of preserving the meaning.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/marypose99

oh, ok, thanks! English is not my first language, so I thought near and next to meant the same thing!


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

They are very, very similar, so some folks might disagree with me. But I would take “next to” and “by” to mean immediately beside the door, while “close to” and “near” allow for being a few seats further away. These are very approximate and subjective ideas, so getting it “wrong” usually wouldn’t even matter, but I do think Duo encouraging us to pay attention to that subtlety is probably a good idea, especially for ESL speakers.

I appreciate the friendly response. Here’s a bit of love for ya. ;)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/marypose99

Thank you very much, very kind of you :)


[deactivated user]

    "By, near, next to" this program is sometimes too literal.


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

    For a quick getaway


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jill825630

    Why not "by the door"? Come on, now. In English, "by" means "near" and "beside"


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Roody438651

    Why is "sit next to the door" not accepted?


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

    Is "miss seat close to the door" not a good translation?


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

    No. The rule is that “sit (down)” is intransitive and “seat” is transitive, so use “seat” when you name an object and “sit” when you don’t.

    There are some regional variations that break this rule, such as “sit yourself down” in the Southern U.S., but these are considered slang.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/anthony397063

    sit near the door should be ok


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

    I think that "cerca la ventana" was accepted as " by the window" in another exercise .


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

    If so, then that was a mistake that should be reported. Omitting “de” is definitely an error.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Andrew70836

    Sit by the door is acceptable - and it does allow sit by the window in another example!


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

    I think i have used ...te with senorita and was marked wrong. Now they want se

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