"She tried to reach the train."
Translation:Ella intentó alcanzar el tren.
From my understanding "tratar de" is more common, but both carry basically the same meaning. http://forum.wordreference.com/showthread.php?t=22569
why not "ella intentó a alcanzar el tren"? In Spanish, we could just put two verbs together, next to each other? I remember in some cases, we have to put "a" between two verbs. Please enlighten me. Thank you.
You're correct, some verbs require a preposition after the verb. For example: tratar (to try) always has a "de" if a verb follows it. Tratar de hablar=to try to speak. It just depends on the verb, some need it, but many don't. "Intentar" is a normal verb, it doesn't require a preposition after it. Intentó alcanzar is enough in this case because "intentó"=she tried, "alcanzar"=to reach. Intentó alcanzar=she tried to reach.
If you look closer at what your link says, there are two translations for "tratar de". One is "to be about", the second is "to try". I've never heard it used to mean "to be about" (I would use "sobre"), but that doesn't mean it doesn't exist. Sometimes certain words/phrases have multiple translations/meanings, this would be an example of that.
Does "reach the train" mean "catch the train", or does it literally mean "to get close to"?
Yes, in English we would use the idiom "catch the train." For example: She was late, but she tried to catch the train." Duolingo probably doesn't have catch the train in its database. Duolingo accepts: Ella trató alcanzar el tren. but I wonder of a hispanohablante would ever use that phrase...
The suggested answers are both 'alcanzar al tren' and 'alcanzar el tren'. Are they both correct, and is there a difference in their meaning?
In this case the "a" is needed, it's not a personal but a preposition "a". As in "Vamos a la playa". ;)
I just wanted to ask, where do you see the "a"? The answer I see is "ella intentó alcanzar el tren".
I definitely saw "Al" instead of "El". BTW, I posted this question months ago, so Duolingo may have changed it.
There shouldn't be a "personal a" here, the object is neither a person nor an animal.
Why not "Ella tratado a alcanzar el tren." ?? What trato? I'm getting confused.
Tratado is the past participle, and is only used with the helping verb "haber" in some of the "perfect" tenses.
Ella había tratado ..... = she had tried
Yo he tratado.... = I have tried
Trató = he tried/she tried/it tried.
You don't need the A. Alcanzar means to reach, so without the A you're already saying "she tried to reach the train". The place where you COULD use an A is before "tren" where it would shorten to al tren. The reason you would do that is to add movement. It's like "she tried to reach toward the train" instead of "she tried to reach the train". But other than that, verbs in the infinitive (tratar, intenter, alcanzar) already mean to try, to reach, so you don't generally need to add an A before them except in specific circumstances. I hope this helps!
I used the imperfect, wrongly as it turned out. I thought the action was incomplete and so thought the preterite might be wrong. I guess not. Must go back yet again to the grammar books.
You're right that she didn't reach the train but it was still a one-time attempt that's over in the context of this sentence. An easy way for me to think of the imperfect is to imagine whether it's fitting to say, for example, "she WAS TRYING to reach the train" instead of just "she tried". So if the sentence was "she was trying to reach the train when her mother called" it would be imperfect and the call would be preterite. The thing that was happening is imperfect, the thing that happened is preterite. Of course I'm sure this is a gross oversimplification but that line of thinking has helped me before.
Can somebody tell me why ''probar'' is wrong?? Conjugated in the sentence : "Probó" Thanks in advance!
Probar is to try as in to try something out, to test something.
Intentar de and tratar de both mean to try to DO something.
Ok...one hour ago I flagged my answer as "should be correct". Now Duolingo has changed the exercise to a set of words you have to put in order instead of a writing exercise with many different variables. Good work!! Thanks for the improvements Duolingo! !
Bonifaciu - "intentó" is the simple past (preterite) of "intentar" conjugated for Él/Ella/Ud.
"To try to" is "tratar de"