"How did it happen?"
Since ocurrió is 3rd person singular, the "it" is implied. "he occurred" and "she occurred" would be unlikely, I think, so that leaves "it occurred."
“Lo” is the 3rd person object pronoun: “him/her”. Castellano does NOT have an inanimate/impersonal pronoun corresponding to English “it”. Instead, one uses “él/ella” when one is talking about inanimate objects (according to the gender of the noun the pronoun refers to) and refrains from EVER using impersonal pronouns. (Además “él/ella” may also be omitted when they can be immediately understood from context, of course.) Example: “compré un libro en la feria … y ÉL me gusta mucho”, or simply “me gusta mucho”. But always “llovió”, without any pronoun (for there is no pronoun that could be used!).
It isn't lo occuiró because lo is an object pronoun, and the 'it' in this sentence is the subject if I am not mistaken.
I believe that BirdieWolf's answer explains it well. Using lo would require a direct object in the English translation. It would translate as "it happened it" Or "it occured him/it". These do not have any meaning, because they are incorrect use of English. Hope that helps a little. I finally understood after redoing sections that were difficult for me.
I did the same thing...how are we supposed to know that lo+ocurrio is not valid...is there something in tips or the conjugation chart that lets you know this? I guess its just something I need to find out some other way/on another site?
Well, we did find it out here. Arguably we learned it better by losing a heart than by reading it in some conjugation chart.
Elizabeth0 provides an excellent answer above. And yes, absolutely you would learn these principles on a different site like studyspanish.com or something. DuoLingo is great for it's intended purpose but it doesn't pretend to be an in-depth trainer of gramatical structure. Just a great place to practice once you learn them.
Yeah, they went through deleting some responses for some reason. I think they deleted responses that weren't very relevant, and mine was a response to one like that, so it went with it. Duolingo should be a little more careful with deletions as a number of very helpful responses have gone missing. Anyway, I'll try my best to explain it again:
The pronoun lo is an object pronoun. For example, in the sentence "I eat it," the 'it' is the object of the sentence (the thing that the verb is being done to) and so in Spanish it would be "Yo lo como." or simply "Lo como." However, lo is never a subject pronoun (the thing that does the verb), always only an object pronoun. In this sentence, "How did it happen?" the 'it' is the subject of happened. Happened can never take an object. You never have "happened it" in English, and that is why lo occurió is not valid Spanish (as Mavry was saying), it simply never makes sense in either language. And the reason that this sentence does not take any pronoun with occurió is because it is in the third person singular tense, meaning that a he/she/it is implied. And you do not need to clarify because people don't 'happen', so the subject has to be the it. So occurió all by itself means "it happened" (or in a question, the 'did' takes up the past tense part, so you get "did it happen?"). There isn't really a pronoun in Spanish that stands for the subject 'it' except ello, which isn't really used. So when 'it' is the subject, it's also simply left as implied. A few examples:
"It runs." = "Corre." - not "Lo corre." (that would be like "runs it" which doesn't make sense, just like with happened)
"It eats." = "Come." - not "Lo come." (which would mean "He/she/it eats it").
dtmedic, I found that BirdieWolf's explanation above was very helpful. I think I am now confused over when to use lo or le in sentances that do need an objective pronoun. Since this is a year old, I imagine you already figured it out and are quite fluent in Spanish now.
MexicoMadness - While "lo" is a direct object for él and usted, as you already know, "le" is the indirect object for the same, plus ella (i.e., "to/for him/her/it/you[formal]"). Ex: "Él le compró una casa" o "Él le compró una casa a ella" (He bought her a house/He bought a house for her). Please note that whether or not there is "a ella" at the end of the example sentence, the "le" is required to be there and is put before the verb. (The propositional phrase "a ella" is optional.)
If you'd like to read more on this, this link is helpful:
They also have quizzes at the bottom of the page which are fun to practice on, although they're quite strict when it comes to spellings, capitalization, and punctuation so be careful when typing your answers :).
I said "como se ocurrio" (w/ acentos) and still don't know why it's wrong to use "se." Plz advise.
Why is "cómo pasó esto" incorrect? Can someone please explain? Doesn't qué pasó mean what happened?
I believe "cómo pasó esto" translates as "how did THIS happen". However the original question was "how did IT happen", wrong translation.
No, in the context of the question "cómo pasó ?" "lo" is already implied. The same with a few other expressions i.e. "Ayer llovió" = It rained yesterday. This is something that needs to be simply memorized.
Why not "Como lo occurrio? Where is the article in the translation?
Does ¿Cómo pasó? mean the same? What's the difference between them anyway?