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  5. "Ellos van a acabar de comer."

"Ellos van a acabar de comer."

Translation:They are going to finish eating.

May 10, 2013



Is there a rule when using 'de' and 'a' in between the infinitive forms of verbs. I've noticed that they are not interchangeable as one would see fit.


Anyone know the difference between "acabar" and "terminar", or if there are situations in which one is appropriate but the other is not?

Based on the apparent etymology (acabar < Latin 'caput' = "head"; terminar < Lat. 'terminus' = "end"), my gut instinct would be that "acabar" implies finishing by cutting something short, while "terminar" implies finishing by seeing something through to completion. (E.g., "acabo de leer" if I stop reading a book partway through; "termino de leer" if I stop reading because I finished the book.)

Is this remotely accurate?


Definitively we don't say in Spanish "ellos van a acabar de comer" we just say "ellos van a terminar de comer"


I guess, because i've also seen acabar used to say something along the lines of "i used to be this" or "i used to do that". So just based on my own intuition, 'cutting short' seems about right.


Another meaning of acabar is in 'acabo de llegar' meaning 'I have just arrived.'


The verb acabar resembles imperfect tense; i think youre wrong


Roger E, that sure seems like sound research; I like it.


How about 'they are going to stop eating'. It might mean that they are going on a hunger strike but so does 'finish eating'. It should be accepted.


When you finish something, generally you have completed the task.
When you stop something, the task isn't completed, but you are no longer doing it.


I'd say that "stopping" something is to some extent independent of completing it - it is not expressly included in the meaning. It does suggest the possibility of interruption mid-completion, but in reality, one may have completed the task or not. Or, the "stopping" may be about something that has no inherent finite scope or duration, e.g. "He stopped going to the gym on Fridays" - no completion, simply the ceasing of an ongoing action or routine.

Meanwhile "finishing" indeed means completion of something that has a finite scope or duration.


Stop eating should be accepted


acabar de is the phrase "to just have finished" something.


Yeah, I thought the use of "acabar de" meant to have just...Perhaps is contextual


" just finished eating" was marked wrong.


That's because you're ignoring 'van a' which marks this as 'going to' not 'just did'.


Would "they are going to stop to eat" be correct?


It's probably too late to answer your question now, but - "To stop to eat" would mean to stop doing something e.g. working IN ORDER TO eat. It's just the compact version.


Doesn't acabar de mean to have just done something? Like "acabo de comer" means "I just ate"


.... and "finish up eating" does not sound well in Br. English, too USAmerican, just drop the "up".


They will have just eaten is a much better translation


I don't see how that could be a translation at all. How are you getting that?


Whoops, i used "stop eating" for acabar de.

Is this totally off-base for interpretation?


I said “they are going to stop eating” but was marked wrong why?


Think 'stop eating' should be accepted. Reported April 29, 2020


I said "stop" instead of finish. I guess it would have been "dejar"


what is wrong with "ellas van a acabar de comer" ?


Isn't eating comiendo? This says they are going to finish to eat. I thought it would be Ellos van a acabar comiendo or something..


The translation for "comiendo" is definitely "eating". But in different languages they may not use that tense as often as English does. So while we may say "eating", they would use the infinitive form (comer) or perhaps the present indicative (comes). For example, we may say "what are you doing" and while you could say "¿Qué estás haciendo?", the more common translation in my experience is "¿Qué haces?"

Hope this helps.


I put they're going to finish eating. What's wrong with that?


Can you not use the present participle comiendo instead of de comer?


I said "stop eating" and it was wrong. Why?


They are going to stop eating - WRONG 01 2019


Tried "finish eating". DL said "finish the food" was correct. So I then tried "finish the food". DL said "finish eating" was correct. Why does this happen?


Acabo de comer means I just ate.

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