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  5. "Había oído cosas en la calle…

"Había oído cosas en la calle."

Translation:I had heard things on the street.

December 24, 2012



Is this slang? Like... When they say heard things no the "street" do they mean they were literally on the street and they heard it? Or does it mean it in a "rumour" kind of way?


Yes lol it's funny to see those expressions in this app, it's very colloquial


Yggrasill, !Verdad!


Duolingo is usually obsessed with "She" when there is no predetermined context, though usually accepts "He" or "I" or "It". However, here they have decieded to go with "I" and reject "He".

Is this just craziness or is there something in this sentence that means it has to be "I" and not "He"?


In spoken spanish we don't use subjects because you will be able to understand the sentence by the context and the conjugation of the verbs. There is nothing in the sentence to know the subject. This is why is correct if you use "yo, él or ella". I'm sorry for my English


Hello UnaCasuita: Your English is perfect! Thank you for helping. A lingot for you.


Fixed now. I went with "he" and it worked.


I am having the same problem. The subject is unclear and in this case could be "I", "she" or "he".


I've noticed that many Spanish speakers habitually use usted, él, ella or yo when using haber in order to clarify the subject due to the ambiguity of its conjugations when referencing first or third parties.


Yes, as should. Because unclear when don't know is the pronoun!

  • 12

On the Irish course, everything is It


What things, Johnny?


My answer: 'i heard things on the street'. DL says I have a typo and marks it correct, but it isn't. DL's answer: 'Id heard things on the street'. That's wrong.


Double, I think of this as "something that happened before the past (that I'm speaking about). // (ex. Yesterday I heard that a week ago something had happened.)


Is this akin to "I heard it on the grapevine"?


That would be "I heard it THROUGH the grapevine." Like the song.

And, it's a good question. For non-natives English speakers, this sentence is generally a figurative expression, to mean that the subject heard gossip.


Or "The word is on the street". Like yet another song :D


I've always known the saying as "The word on this street is..." - i.e. a different placement of the verb. But of course this reflects (basically) what Duolingo already offered above - though Duo's sentence is in a rather uncommon form; if I encountered this exact wording, I'd have to think twice before I understood what was intended.


I believe common usage is "Word on THE street is that..."


Could it be:

I had heard something on the street.

In the end, isn't it the meaning of the sentence?


''cosas'' could be stuff here? (i'm a native spanish speaker)


Walking down the street in Bucerias a month ago.... heard "como estan las cosas" Appears to be a colloquial overlap.


Oh word? What did you hear?


"Nada, nada..."


How are you supposed to know what actual pronoun to use here?


Well normally it's a different verb form for I pronouns, as opposed to you pronouns or he/she/it pronouns, but with past perfect they are all the same, so in this sentence, how do you know if "habia oido" is supposed to mean "I had heard," as opposed to "you had heard," or "he/she/it had heard"?


Ah, I understand. You're right - it's like that with the imperfect past tense as well.

In Duo, you just have to guess which one you think it might be and hope that it's right! There are plenty of examples where they haven't added a certain response to their database of correct answers (for example, accepted ella or él but not usted) and if that happens you have to use the report function to notify them of the problem.

In real life, context will usually take care of any ambiguity, but in Duo it's really just a crapshoot.


Thank you very much! Yes I suppose in real life you would have much more of a context to what/who is being talked about, which we don't get in these standalone practice sentences.


I did the translation correct but have to question whether Spanish speakers actually use "cosas" the same way that we do in English. It seems an unusual colloquial overlap. Technically it is a noun.....? thoughts appreciated.


Streets is watching. - Jay Z


What is wrong with "something" in this case? I was marked wrong


"something" is "algo", "cosas" is "things".


Due to the ambiguity set up by the absence of a personal pronoun, I went with "Things had been heard on the street." (And I'm sticking to it!)


Hmm, I don't think it quite works like that, even though there is no pronoun, 'cosas' cannot be the subject either because it is the object in this instance. Otherwise it would be more "cosas habían sido oír en la calle". As mentioned in a previous comment, pronouns are usually used with past perfect sentences, but because Duolingo isn't a person it has not used pronouns probably because it may not be easy to fix.


kswester, ¡yo tambien! ---Keneĉjo Ricardo


How do you have any idea if the sentence refers to I had you had, or he had, she had etc? would it be better to say Yo había, Ella había... ? to clairfiy who they are referring as having had things on the street?


Not necessarily. There is an assumption that the subject is known through some greater context, which is absent here. It's similar to wondering who "he" or "she" is. I mean, suppose we explicitly included the subject pronoun "ella." How do you know who she is? It could be Mary, or Jane, or Janelle, or .... And even if we knew it was Mary, how do we know if it's Mary Shelley or Mary Stuart or Mary Tyler Moore or ....

The point is that we understand all of this via context. You're absolutely right that we know next to nothing about the subject with the single given sentence. It depends on more information.

For the Duo drills, you can usually choose "I" or "she," but that's purely arbitrary.


So I guess he heard the word on da block, right?


Sounds like a line in a rap song


is "Habia" both for you and I ? if yes, how would you know which is which


"You had heard something in the street" was accepted.


I heard it on the grapevine. I like that.


¡Mamá Joyce!


La palabra en la calle es...



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