3 Vote

¿Adónde vas?

I have read that this phrase means "Where are you going?" but doesn't it actually mean "Where do you go?" and if so is there a way to distinguish between these two.

I ask because if I say "Lee un libro" it means "He reads a book"

but if i say "ésta leyendo un libro" it means "He is reading a book"

Correct?

Thanks

  • Posted Apr 19, 2011
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3 Answers

6 Vote

English uses the continuous forms (e.g. I am going) to mean right now, or in a planned future time, while keeping the simple present for habitual or regular actions... unless you use verbs of state, where the continuous is rarely used. Spanish rarely uses progressive forms (e.g. estoy yendo) with verbs like "ir", where there is no progression, and English does a similar thing with certain verbs. For example, you wouldn't say "I am having 3 coins in my pocket", right? Well, in some languages, you would have to say it like that.

If you are wondering how to determine whether "¿Adónde vas?" means right now or habitually, try to explain to people who speak a different language how do you know whether "I have three coins" means right now or habitually (Clue: context).

3 Vote

In Spanish, the present tense is often used where we would use present progressive in English (-ing). Therefore, you have to base the understanding off of context. For example:

  • ¿Adónde vas los sábados? = Where do you go on Saturdays?
  • Ahora me voy a casa. ¿Adónde vas? = I'm leaving to go home now. Where are you going?

See what I mean? Spanish doesn't always translate that literally.

2 Vote

Hello rores and Welcome to the Spanishdict forum grin

¿Dónde vas? = Where are you going? or Where do you go? (literally)

¿Adónde vas? = Where are you going?(lit: to where do you go)

I hope this helps grin

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