"No, I would like her to keep it."
Translation:No, vorrei che lo tenesse lei.
Unless listed in the hints, there's no way for a learner to know what the specific tense form for a given verb should be. I know I need to use the 'subjunctive imperfect' form of tenere, but if the hint says 'trattenere' then that's what I will use, only to be rejected because the correct form should have been something else (tenesse). This gets real frustrating at times!
I always stumble over this sentence and put: "No, vorrei che lei lo tenesse". Why is it wrong? So far I thought that the subject "lei" is to keep the object "lo". Could anybody explain this to me please?
The rule seems to be that the imperfect subjunctive is used in a subordinate phrase when the principal phrase uses the imperfect or, as in this case, the conditional.
'tenga' is not acceptable? i thought this would require present tense subjunctive
So did I .... as I understood it , you use the present subjunctive for things in the present .... in English this is in the present, so I don't understand why it is rejected.
When main part of sentence is in the Conditional followed by "che", the subordinate phrase is in the Imperfect Subjunctive. That is a rule of Italian grammar. So "vorrei che" has to be followed by a verb in the Imperfect subjunctive.
In practice you will notice that this only applies when the subject of each part of the sentence is not identical because in that case you would not use "che" and therefore no subjunctive, eg "I would like to keep it" = "vorrei tenerlo (io)" BUT "I would like you to keep it" = "vorrei che lo tenessi tu".
Thank you too acqualinda, that's what I thought after reading paolingual's explanation but you have confirmed it for me. Your other points are also very helpful and I will be copying both yours and P's advice for future reference. I am grateful to you for taking the time to reply.
The answer to your doubts is here: http://www.zanichellibenvenuti.it/wordpress/?p=4306
I know it's difficult to understand, but it's difficult to explain as well! Hope that link would be useful.
ps: - vorrei che lo tenga lei WRONG - voglio che lo tenga lei RIGHT (not talking about this exercise, but in general)
Thanks Paola, that's a big help. Alvaro is trying to teach me how to use the subjunctive properly but every time I think I've understood I come across something like this! However, even without the Zanichelli link, I think your explanation answers my question .... if I'm not mistaken, you use the present subjunctive with the present indicative and the imperfect with the conditional. ....... or, am I barking up the wrong tree again?
I typed this exactly as it appears above with "lo" the only choice given in the multiple choice translation "which is awful and full of errors" and was marked incorrect because it was supposed to be "io" (not among the choices) and not lo. I had to assume they were capitalizing the I. There is no end to this. I can never finish a lesson without wasting time.