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"A secretária pode ter se confundido."

Translation:The secretary may have been mistaken.

July 27, 2013

34 Comments


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

I simply don't understand the structure of the portuguese sentence. I can only see "the secretary may have been confusing herself".


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

yes, bit confusing. We would not translate Duo's sentence literally! Another correct option for the English sentence is " a secretária pode ter se enganado". Anyway, it continues not being a literal translation but keeps the same meaning..


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

Right, the reflexive "been confusing herself" sounds strange, we would simply say "been confused". Many Portuguese verbs have reflexive forms with no apparent equivalents in English. Actually, in this case, we can find a phrase which is a reasonable translation and keeps the reflexive quality: "got herself in a muddle". I don't expect Duolingo to accept it though :-)


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

hehe.... probably not


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

I think I need to make a mnemonic of the different types of prepositional arrangements etc. There's really a lot of those pitfalls in Português.


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

In case anyone wonders: In this sentence, "confundido" is the past participle of "confundir". Being a verb, it is not supposed to agree with the gender of "secretária".

Compare with the sentence "Eu fui confundida com uma estudante", in which "confundida" is an adjective and should agree with the gender.

Please correct me if I'm wrong :)


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

Actually, for the second one it works as an adjective although it is still participle... =)


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

I said "confundido" when it was "o secretario" and "confundida" in this sentence. If it works as an adjective, is it still wrong? :)


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

Here, it does not work as an adjective, so it is wrong to use "confundida" =/


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/reno300

So if "se confundido" = "been confused", would "se confundir" = "become confused"? And does this "se+past participle=been....." work for every verb?


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

Se confundir = get/become confused. The second partmof your question will depend on the context.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/reno300

Thanks Paul, I think I'm making (slow) progress.


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

It doesn't work for all verbs. Example, there is no such thing as "ela se andou"/"tinha se andado".

That works for verbs which are reflexive and for verbs that are not necessarely reflexive, but whose object can be the subject.


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

I translated "the secretary may be confused" but it wasn't accepted. As "pode" is present tense, why must it be translated with "have been"?


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

It seems to me that "ter" has a role here and my literal translation is "The secretary may have got confused" which convinces me we are talking about the past.


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

Yes, this sentence is in the past. It's shown by its structure. The use of the verb poder in the past (pôde) keeps the same meaning. Your sentence is a good alternative! =)


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

So how do you say the present "the secretary may be confused" in PT?


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

A secretária pode estar confusa.


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

I'm 99% certain that my answer was correct: "The secretary may have gotten confused." It should not have been marked incorrect


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lucia701970

The recording definitely said "O secretário pode ter se confundido", but Duolingo said it was wrong and it insisted that the correct phrase was "A secretária pode ter se confundida". Weird!! This should not be happening to any AI system.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/giordano.a.b

The audio says "O secretária pode ter se confundido.", I just reported it.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Robleh100

Exactamente Gior'. I wonder is this how ungrammatical ptg sounds to native speakers? that would be one *&# of a screw up. Using a masculine article with a feminine noun?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Brigitta.G

I still understand o secretària and will therefore report it as well. Ende of May 2020.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/marijke.va1

Istill do not understand why this sentence is in the past ...


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

According to this dictionary, the verb "confundir-se" (that is the reflexive version of "confundir") translates "get confused" (or "get mixed up") and "se confundido" is the past participle which is "got confused" (or "gotten confused" for some English speakers). Therefore a workable translation is "The secretary may have got confused" which is a past tense form. The translation chosen by Duolingo is just a less literal variant of this sentence.


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

Good question, Marijke. This is important. Let's look at the verbs: PODE (present of PODER = can or may) TER (infinitive of TO HAVE) se confundido (participle of SE CONFUNDIR = to get confused or be mistaken)

Can have gotten confused.

May have been mistaken.

Do you see how TER + PARTICIPIO give you an event that happened in the past?


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

the action IS in the past. She got confused earlier and it is noticed in the present. Although the "confusion" happened in a previous moment. :)


[deactivated user]

    The pronunciation in Portuguese has a problem. I heard: O "secretária" pode ter se confundido. I think it needs to be coherent. The correct pronunciation is "Secretário". The subject was pronounced in the feminine form when it must be pronounced in the masculine form.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lucia701970

    I heard the same thing too. Weird. On the other hand, if you click on the 'slower' button, then you will hear the right word, viz. "A secretária...".


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

    "The secretary could have been confused" was accepted.

    "Confused" and "mistaken" are different. "Confused" implies the subject in question was unsure and therefore in no position to make a decision, whereas" mistaken" means that the decision they made was wrong.

    So, which of the two acceptable answers is more accurate? How would one convey the real intent of the sentence more clearly, to distinguish between the two interchangeable interpretations?


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

    That sentence is inherently ambiguous on this issue. It could really mean either. It's the verb "se confundir". It has both meanings in Portuguese even though they may be more distinct in English.


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

    Nossa..... Obrigado


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

    Why can't this sentence mean "The secretary may have gotten confused"? It seems like a good translation.

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