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"It is Sunday; he could not have gone to school."

Translation:Es domingo; él no pudo haber ido a la escuela.

5 years ago

53 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/jhlofficial

I find the entire explanation process lacking, i.e. non-existent. I see no structure in this entire section, and the switch between present and past tenses seems somewhat random.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/BulbousRumpus

100% agree with you. I love Duo and I love that this is free, but this lesson is unnecessarily frustrating

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/elissaf1
elissaf1
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There are a lot of other resources out there. In fact, I've been needing the extra explanations since way back in preterite land. http://www.studyspanish.com/verbs/ is a good resource for all the tenses.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/marycpa

I, too, totally agree with this observation. I know that I get what I pay for, but gee whiz! This is nuts. At SOME point DL needs to give us some info about the rules of the road re: irregular verbs & what bloody 'tense' we're dealing with. And why can't "Conjugate" include the meaning of the verb, in the infinitive, in English?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/danielew83

It is a complex sentence, but it makes sense.... think of it as the answer to "Why couldn't he go to school today?" "Its sunday... he couldn't have gone to school!" While we might simplify the answer more commonly, it still makes sense and teaches you more difficult structures.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/LICA98
LICA98
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The only sentence on Duolingo with a semicolon in it?

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Hoja.de.Arce
Hoja.de.Arce
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Why "pudo" and not "podía"?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/momentopeludo

'Pudo' is the simple past, while 'podía' is the imperfect past. The simple past for 'can (is able to)' is 'could (was able to)' in English, while the imperfect would be translated as 'used to be able to'.

So here, you couldn't translate 'he could not have gone' using the imperfect; 'él no podía haber ido' would translate to English as 'he didn't used to have gone', which is incorrect.

So it's a tense issue. With the imperfect you would say 'Él no podía ir' or 'he didn't used to go', which is a totally different meaning.

Hope that helps!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/StephenSJBrown

Ah this is similar to hubo and había, right? The -o form referring to a single past event and -ía form in reference to a continuous past.

Thanks!

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/momentopeludo

Yes, exactly. For Haber:

Preterite / completed past: '-o' (for él, ella, Usted)

Imperfect / continuous past: '-ía' (for él, ella, Usted)

See http://www.spanishdict.com/conjugate/haber for the other conjugations in the preterite/imperfect columns (indicative mood)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/b.marcello
b.marcello
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Actually, the right tense must be the Condicional simple once the phrase is setting a condition, or probability, why he must not have gone: Es domingo. So "Es domingo, él no podría haber ido a la escuela" is a right answer too.

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/asferdinand

This is what I would have said, as well: "él no podría haber ido a la escuela"

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ALLintolearning3
ALLintolearning3
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If they had said "If it were Sunday,....." that would have been a conditional; but "It is Sunday..." is a factual statement...

2 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/cmiyamoto
cmiyamoto
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Yeah exactly, why?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/covinm
covinm
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Is there anyone that can answer this question? Don't 'pudo' and podía' mean the same thing?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/marycpa

why was this person 'down voted?' I put him back to -0-. There are no stupid questions in THIS section, that's for sure.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ALLintolearning3
ALLintolearning3
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No, they do not mean the same thing. http://conjugator.reverso.net/conjugation-spanish-verb-poder.html

"pudo" is simple past "He could or could not...." It happened or didn't in the past at a specific point in time which is over.

"podía" is imperfect "He used to not be able to..." It was ongoing for a while in the past, or not - but the period of time is not just one fixed point.

"podría" is conditional "If it were Sunday, then he could not...." The conditional is not stated like a fact as this sentence was "Es domingo" is a fact and not a condition.

The problem is that in English "could" is used in past, and conditional and the conditional is often in present or future. So "could" is actually rather timeless and is used in the past, present or future. In Spanish there are more specific forms.

2 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/brendals

this is getting into some tricky grammar....back to the books for me!!!

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/maturebiker

Surely colegio should be accepted?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AnabelleCo

I think it should be correct to say "Es Domingo; él no pudo haber ido a la escuela"

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/flint72
flint72
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Yes, this has been accepted for me.

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jjbear1103
jjbear1103
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I'm confused about this one too. "No puede" doesn't seem correct to mean when using "could have"

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ALLintolearning3
ALLintolearning3
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Oh, this must have changed. This is what I see above:

"It is Sunday; he could not have gone to school."

Translation: Es domingo; él no pudo haber ido a la escuela.

2 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/rmcgwn

This is a tough one with a lot going on. But thinking it thru (I didnt get it right the first time) He cannot (puede) have gone to school works in English which is why puede I believe has been accepted. Now I went for the imperfect pudía & not preterite & my logic was it is not an action that took place & as long as this is still Sunday it is recent therefore imperfect would kick in. Not so obviously. Chances are that because I used ido (past) and not iba (imperfect) it makes podía wrong. Just talking it out in case it helps anyone or if you have some explanation.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Talca
Talca
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Do not have books here to check on this, but does the condition come into play in this sentence?

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/rmcgwn

It is Monday; he could have gone to school. Es lunes; él pudo haber ido a la escuela. I changed this back to a positive statement only to see if it looks different. I can see why we use 'ido' because we are talking about a past action that may have occurred.

It does sound conditional as well then I wonder if 'habria ido' is accepted. But I too need to read up on conditional, imperfect and subjunctive. I am assuming we must keep the same tense within the same clause. That being the case believing 'ido' is correct maybe we must use pudo (preterite).

I suddenly feel like I have no idea what I'm doing.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/tecalai

I used conditional and it was not accepted. I interpreted 'could . . . ' to mean "he would not have been able to . . .

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jjcthorpe

Me too - up to now, it seems anyways, DL was using the conditional tense for poder, ie podria as "could" ( instead of "would") but NOW it is insisting that "podria" does not mean "could" ( DL does not accept it here anyways) and that the preterite "pudo" should be used - which made sense to me before DL kept insisting that "podria" be used for "could" so...it makes things confusing. Does anyone know what tense should be used for "could"? Thanks.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ALLintolearning3
ALLintolearning3
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"Could" can be the past form of "can" or the conditional form and in the conditional "could" could be used for past, present or future - so it is rather timeless. Spanish, however, has more specific forms.

The conditional would have started with "If it were Sunday..."

This is not the conditional.

In order to know which tense to use in Spanish, you must know how "could" was being used in the sentence. Is it past, present, future, conditional, subjunctive?

2 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/rmcgwn

Good try. I still find this sentence hard to break down. I realize now that could is used in English in the past, present & future. [I could walk to school on my own when I was six/ I could walk to school by myself/ I could walk to school tomorrow. Conditional would require as you said a meaning more like "I would have gone to school on time if my alarm clock had worked ". In our example they have used pudo so they have specified the preterite.

So we can eliminate the conditional tense. As well we know that poder is used as an auxillary verb and it must be followed by an infinitive & here it is [haber].

So we have [pudo haber] but now haber is being used as an auxillary and strangely its in the infinitive. Now thats getting tricky for me. Can we say that because we used pudo we have place the event in the past therefore ir must also be in the preterite? Ido is the past participle and the only choice when followed by an auxillary verb such as haber. Usually we would use a conjugated form of haber with the participle but we can't if we follow the rule that poder conjugated needs an infinitive to follow. Hmmm! I think I have an answer in a round about way. I hope my thinking out loud will help someone else.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/DeborahStrother

this totally helped me get it "As well we know that poder is used as an auxillary verb and it must be followed by an infinitive & here it is [haber]." auxillary verb is what I forgot. Thanks!!!

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Kazmax1

That makes two of us, mcgwn!

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/elissaf1
elissaf1
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I think the last portion of what you wrote is incorrect. The past participle, ido, is always* used with the perfect in any tense, i.e., the haber. So you would say "haber ido" with all tenses of the poder, and those would have no influence on the poder.

In English, the difference between "he cannot have gone to school" and "he could not have gone to school" is that the first is present tense and the second is past tense. This can be seen in the (rather lame, and I apologise for this) examples:

"He cannot have gone to school because he is up in his room." (You can see the present tense, because the two clauses are not in contradiction.)

"He could not have gone to school because he is up in his room." (You can see the past tense, because the two clauses ARE in contradiction - the second does not support the former - he could have gone to school and returned already.)

But the overlap is in the ending, not the beginning of the event. Both started earlier, but one finished and the other did not, and this might be why either was accepted.

Perhaps you cannot use the imperfect (podria) followed by a perfect (haber ido) because they cancel one another out?

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/btboyd90

It says that "no pudo haber ido" and "no puede haber ido" are both correct ... Can anyone enlighten me on whether one is better and why?

5 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/martinlus
martinlus
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I would expect 'no puede' to be 'he cannot' ie present tense? :-

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Biberin

"puede" is no longer listed as a correct option.

4 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/nueby
nueby
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...no puede haber ido... was (still or again) accepted on 6 October 2014.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/jae.mac.96

I don't understand when I don't use an article for a day of the week it gets marked wrong. But here you need it.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/MissSpell
MissSpell
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"Except in constructions where the day of the week follows a form of ser (a verb for "to be"), as in hoy es martes (today is Tuesday), the article is needed."

http://spanish.about.com/od/adjectives/a/intro_def_art.htm

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/AnabelleCo

In some countries "Escuela" is used for public schools and "Colegio" for private schools.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Daniel.Luke

So what you're saying is they are both used for "school".

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/blackstickyrice

Why isn't it «él no había podido ir»?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/MissSpell
MissSpell
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blackstickyrice, «él no había podido ir» means "He hadn't been able to go." So the meaning is a bit different.

https://mx.answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20110201104817AAmEFLj
I don't normally link to yahoo answers, but i like Sherkano's answer.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Daniel.Luke

How is school not colegio?

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Sparkie46
Sparkie46
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el no habría podido ir a la escuela. The infinitive haber with a past participe seems strange to me here.

3 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ALLintolearning3
ALLintolearning3
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"He would not have been able to go to school." is not exactly the same as "He could not have gone to school." They are used in different situations.

The first could be used if there was something preventing his ability to go to school. Perhaps he was in a car accident and he was sent in an ambulance to the hospital. "If he wanted to go, he would not have been able to go to school." This is a conditional statement, but the sentence above is not a conditional sentence. It is not "If it were Sunday...."

This is a fact "It is Sunday; he could not have gone to school." "It is not possible that he went to school."

Be careful "could, would, should" are timeless when used in conditional statements and can refer to past, present or future, but in factual statements they are all past forms.

"could" also does not always refer to ability, sometimes it is referring to possibility.

https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/could

https://www.realfastspanish.com/grammar/the-spanish-conditional-tense-5-uses

2 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/HunterCazador

Es domingo; él no podría haber ido a la escuela.

Could have: Podría haber, Podrías haber, Podría haber, Podríamos haber, Podrían haber

Should have: Debería haber, Deberías haber, Debería haber, Deberíamos haber, Deberían haber.

Much easier to remember :-)

2 years ago

https://www.duolingo.com/DeborahStrother

why not "él no pudo ha ido a la escuela?"

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ALLintolearning3
ALLintolearning3
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Poder requires that the following verb be in infinitive form.

2 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/hesolomon

"Es domingo; él no podría haber ido a la escuela." Isn't this also correct?

1 year ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ALLintolearning3
ALLintolearning3
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No, if it were conditional than it would start with "if" or "si". Watch out for "could" when not in the conditional it can be used as a past of "can" or as a polite form for requests. This is a timeless auxilary verb form. It can be used in past, present or future.

This is a fact: it is just not possible that he went to school because it is Sunday.

It is Sunday; he could not have gone to school.

2 months ago

https://www.duolingo.com/Tomas.Janik
Tomas.Janik
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Why cannot I start with 'es el domingo'? I still don't understand the rules about definite articles before days of the week...

3 weeks ago

https://www.duolingo.com/ALLintolearning3
ALLintolearning3
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When we would put “on Sunday” that is when you would put “es el Domingo”. So if you put “Es el Domingo...”. You would be saying “It is on Sunday...”

3 weeks ago