1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Spanish
  4. >
  5. "¿Has tocado un elefante?"

"¿Has tocado un elefante?"

Translation:Have you touched an elephant?

August 14, 2013

130 Comments


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

I'm not falling for this one again. That was NOT an elephant's trunk!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/alfred-00

( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/dunk999

Some people mistake it for one though....


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

But it was muy grande...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/martind611973

thats the suction of deduction seduction


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

Why must you know of my proximity to an elephant


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SD-77

Sentence weirdness rating: 10/10


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PeterB44

Not at all. It is on everyone's list of things to do before they die. Isn't it ?????


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

Finally I can ask people this.


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

Such a handy phrase ;)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/lola.kot.5

Funny enough, I actually have used that sentence in my conversations quite a few times recently. I went to Sri Lanka where I visited an elephant sanctuary. They allowed me to touch the elephants, but I was not allowed to ride one. Other than that context, the phrase is completely useless. :)


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

I wonder how you say "Have you ridden an elephant?"


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

I would guess it would be "has montado", maybe? Montar=to ride


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NathanSmit674822

That should definitely be in the "Flirting" lesson.


[deactivated user]

    Could 'montar' be literally translated to 'mount' in the same sense of riding an animal?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Olivia-R-W

    Yup! No puedo montar un caballo, pero monto una bicicleta.


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

    I'd be careful. In English "to mount" can be a euphemism for sexual ❤❤❤❤❤❤❤❤❤❤❤, especially when animals are involved.


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

    Accidentally spelled "elephant" as "elefant". I feel like the more Spanish I learn the more I accidentally confuse my English. >.<


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

    I have noticed the more languages I try to learn, the worse my English gets. =p I guess my brain picks its favorite aspects and tries to sneak them in. I still end up capitalizing all nouns and I haven't looked at German in months.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/incredible3

    Me too sometimes i find myself speaking english with spanish grammer


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Olivia-R-W

    Exactly! My favorite spanish teacher of all time does that, my favorite being "the google"


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

    You, I agree with completely.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ender.che.

    Timmy... Have you ever seen a grown man naked?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CharlotteN7

    I have - but elephant's trunk most only be a comparison that works inside mens minds!


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PeterB44

    Ooooh - Harsh. Fair, but still harsh.


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

    I rode one in Thailand, thanks for asking Duo.


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

    But did you touch him? :D


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

    No, he hovered above it


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/-xsaidtheskyx-

    of course it was thailand. ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)


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

    It sounds like a PSA. Have you touched an elephant today?


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

    Or an advertisement for Wild Safari Adventures.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ACL8903

    Right after this sentence I got "They have called the police."

    ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)


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

    How do you go back to a previous sentence to make a comment?


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

    Show me exactly where you touched it on this elephant toy...


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/david.godfrey

    I interpreted this sentence completely innocently. It wasn't until I saw the comments that I realized the second meaning. Lol


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

    Obviously I am missing the second meaning.


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

    No your honour.


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

    ....Would you like to ? ^ㅂ^


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

    The questions asked by duo often sound like a statement, I have listened several times and do not hear an inflection for a question. This sounds like "you have touched an elephant" to me.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/elissaf1

    "That must be my elephant!" (I knew that other sentence would eventually come in handy.)


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

    es seguramente mi elefante (surely or most probably)


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/elissaf1

    Your memory is better than mine! :) Have a lingot! (I have several to spare :)


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

    Hey thanks. "Es seguramente mi elefante" just so happened to be one of those Español sentences that got stuck in my head the same way a song does, and I kept repeating it to myself and occasionally saying it out loud when the situation did not call for it.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Cavman144

    so, tocado can mean both "played", and "touched"?


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

    Si'. Como tocar un piano & tocar un elefante.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Donn134059

    How would you say, "have you played an elephant", as if you were playing it musically?


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/alexP2

    Why don't we need the personal a?


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

    We only use that with people or pets. Maybe if you work in a circus or a zoo that has elephants you could use it.


    [deactivated user]

      You ever drink baileys from a shoe?


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

      You wanna see my downstairs mixup?


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

      Shout out to fans of the story of the Blind Men and the Elephant? Just me? Okay.


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

      One happed to touch its knee. "I see" said the blind man, "the elephant is very like a tree."


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/tholroyd2

      Why isn't there a shirt that says this???


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

      I'm stealing this pick-up line.


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

      ¡Por supuesto! Pero no inapropiadamente.


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

      Not... but I realy realy realy realy want!!! u.u


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

      I always check the comments for silly sentences like this. Just for a giggle. Meanwhile, it might have been be more useful to offer us " has tocado una guitarra?" So we'd at least learn that's the word used for 'play guitar". SIgh.


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

      No, but I've touched a cat.


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

      Thank goodness I learned this phrase it will definitely come in handy!


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

      Aha, that's a great help!


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

      Would "have you ever touched an elephant" also work? thanks


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

      Len_H... "jamas", "ever"... not part of the sentence. Best wishes on your Spanish studies.


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

      Queue Beavis & Butthead style laughing


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/2689327396

      I said: Have you ever touched an elephant? But Duolingo marked it wrong!!!!!!!!!!!!


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

      I guess it was the word "ever" duo didn't like. Duo can be pretty exact and literal.


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

      Why is "has tu tocado in elefante" wrong


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/amble2lingo

      There are several things wrong with your sentence: "Has tu tocado in elefante." First, "tú" (no accent) = your. You need "tú" (with an accent) if you want to say "you." Then, it should be "un elefante" not "in elefante." Finally, you are trying to do a word for word English to Spanish translation which often does not work, as is the case here. The verb, "has tocado," should not be split by placing another word between "has" and "tocado." Furthermore, you do not need to include a "tú" in this sentence because the "has" already gives the information that the subject is second person singular. If you really wanted to include the "tú," the sentence would be: "¿Tú has tocado un elefante?" or "¿Has tocado un elefante tú?."


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

      "In" is a Freudian slip


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

      why is incorrect with "did" ???

      "did you touched an elephant? " (because "have" normally is a present tense)


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

      "Did you touch" is simple past. You can't say "Did you touched".. that's grammatically incorrect and sounds.. just awful.

      "Have you touched" is present perfect, in this case a reference to "have you ever," referencing things in the past. But it also could be talking about an elephant that's standing right next to you. In either case the verb that follows "have you..." will always be past tense.. It's something you will see a lot. Have I written a response? Yes, I have. Just now. Did I write it? Yes. And I'm done now.


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

      I am not a native English person, and for me "did you touched" sounds just fine :D

      But your answer has sense. You want to say that when the verb is in past tense the question need to be in present (written=past with question have=present) and vice versa (write=present with question did=past).

      And, "Did i written" is incorrect because: written=past with question did=past (past with past). I will search more explications about this.

      Thanks.


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

      It's interesting because I've never stopped to think about it. But yes,

      If you start the sentence with "Did you" (simple past) then you always use simple present for the verb ..... "touch"

      If you start with "Have you" (present perfect) then you always use simple past for the verb .... "touched"

      That's probably part of some larger rule that I'm unaware of but follow just by habit.


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

      'did you touched' does not sound at all correct to a native English speaker. 'did you touch' means only one time and then finished. In Spanish that is more the preterit tense. 'Have you touched' means -do you have that experience, any time, any number of times. Often either tense is ok to use... but it is not ok to mix up the grammar to make did you touched.


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

      Yeah, "did you touched" sounds like glass breaking.


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

      I put "Have you played with an elephant?" because the previous question said "tocado" was "played" so I thought perhaps I was supposed to imagine I was in a country where people can actually play with elephants which I guess would included touching them. I'm guessing playing in that sense would be jugando ?


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

      From what I understand, tocar only means "to play" when referencing musical instruments. Duo doesn't give you that little tidbit.


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

      Tocar is to play as in play a guitar, which you play by touching...


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/IanWitham1

      How would I say, "I play the Theremin"? The Theremin is a musical instrument that is played without touching it.


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

      I suggest "Deslizo el theremín".


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/IanWitham1

      Thank you. for your reply and for not sneering at me because I spelt "Theremin" wrong. "I slide the Theremin" sounds good to me.


      https://www.duolingo.com/profile/s-partridge

      No, officer, that wasn't me.


      [deactivated user]

        No. They don't play fair in Tag....


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

        why is this wrong "have you touched the elephant?"


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

        The original sentence used the indefinite article "un" not the definite article "el" So the correct answer was "Have you touched 'an' elephant."


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LuLu288429

        I think I have never been asked this question before or asked anyone.


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

        i can't even tell you how many times i have gotten it wrong for putting "the" instead of "a"!!!!


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

        I really wanted to try "Have you played an elephant?", but i figured it was too Marx Brothers for Duo.


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

        No, but I shot one in my pajamas once. What he was doing in my pajamas, I'll never know!


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

        what a handy phrase, i use it everyday!


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

        Why is "You touched an elephant?" not accepted?


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

        This lesson is in the present perfect tense, and your translation is in the simple past.


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

        For fun, I wrote "pachyderm." Duo was not amused.


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

        It's ambiguous; rhinoceroses and hippopotamuses are also pachyderms.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/marcooooo2004

        i picked the right word and it keeps counting WROONG!!!


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

        "I did not have a sexual relationship with that elephant"


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

        no.................................................


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

        might touch a cat, but never an elephant


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

        Love the comments on sentences like these.


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

        In school, I only learned tocar as play, like an instrument. I was very confused when I first read this sentence! Lol


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Charles218008

        Past Spanish teachers have encouraged us to us the formal -- Ha tocado un elefante. Why does Duolingo prefer the familiar? And might it be possible to give us a clue when that is what they are preferring?


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

        When you are asked to translate from English, Duolingo should always accept both (as well as the plural forms). If not, then you should report it.


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AdamSun5

        Why doesn't it accept "before" after the sentence? Have you touched an elephant before?


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mike209223

        The past tense “tocado” needs no further additives since past tense already means......before. It would be redundant.


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

        And if so, did it feel like a snake, a fan, a tree trunk, a wall, a rope, or a spear?


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

        I told myself I wasn't going to break from quizzes to see the discussion on things like this, but I couldn't help myself. Hadn't even thought about the naughty euphemism angle. For some reason I read it as "Have you touched THE elephant?" Totally missed the "un" in there.


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

        If you are using the "tu" form of haber, why don't you use the "tu" form for tocar also?


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

        "Tocado" is not a conjugated verb - it is a participle. It does not change regardless of who is speaking or whether they're using past perfect, present perfect, or future perfect tense.

        He tocado un elefante. - I have touched an elephant

        Has tocado un elefante. - you have touched an elephant.

        Habíamos tocado un elefante. - We had touched an elephant.

        Él habrá tocado un elefante. - He will have touched an elephant.

        It's the same for other participles:

        He hablado con mi padre. - I have talked with my father.

        Ella había cocinado la cena. - She had cooked the dinner.

        We don't conjugate the second verb in English either (but most of our participles are also indistinguishable from our past tense verbs.) You wouldn't translate the above sentence, for example, as "She had she cooked the dinner."


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

        How would you say, "You have touched an elephant."


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

        It's the same exact sentence but without the question marks. That's something about the Spanish language that makes it both more confusing and less confusing than English. When speaking, it's all about inflection, and you don't have to move words around in the sentence when switching from a statement to its corresponding question like you do in English.


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

        Definitely going to use this in my Spanish speaking exam.


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

        Why must you know of my proximity to an elephant


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/NathanielN2006

        WHO IN THEIR RIGHT MIND WOULD ASK OR EVEN WANT TO DO THIS?


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/anthonyhill780

        Sounds like some sexual innuendo.


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

        Have you played an elephant (or a trumpet)? Why is this not accepted?


        https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Joanie735811

        Has tocado un elefante? Have you touched an elephant?


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

        Why is it not "a un elefante" when in other sentences, I've seen "a" used for animals, including when it wasn't clear that they were pets?


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

        Why isn't this in "flirting"?


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

        Please stop the nonesense!

        Is only LaurettaGemz wanting to learn something? Like me? Why not using the personal A in this sentence?


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

        As I understand it, the personal a is only used with animals if they are pets or have names, i.e. Smokey the Bear. The rule of thumb my teacher told me is: if you would use him or her in English use the personal a, if you would use "it," don't.


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

        One thing I just thought of. There are a few instruments with animal names. La serpiente for example. Perhaps the exceptions are to differentiate between playing an instrument and touching an animal?


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

        Thanx CharlesDain (and of course you mean: ".....if you would not.....don't.")


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

        No, I meant if you would use the word it in English(the neutral third person pronoun), don't use the personal a.


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

        Why? Who's asking?

        Learn Spanish in just 5 minutes a day. For free.
        Get started