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estar/ser

0
votes

Hello everybody. I've been learning Spanish for two weeks now. I've some doubts about these phrases: 1. Está soltera. and 2. Es soltera. I know that in case of some adjectives the meaning of the sentence changes depending on whether "ser" or "estar" is used. I was told, however, that in this case the meaning remains the same. If somebody confirmed it, I'd be feliz wink Gracias por los explicaciones!

7070 views
updated FEB 23, 2012
posted by bomberapolaca

10 Answers

3
votes

Ser/Estar

If you read this Reference article on Ser/Estar you will see that this concept of permanent/temporary state is strongly disapproved.

If you use soltero to to classify (distinguish between divorced/married, etc.) then you use Ser.

If you are discussing a state in time then you use Estar.

updated OCT 10, 2009
posted by 0074b507
All true, and thank you for posting that. But how does that really change our answer? Wouldn't the examples given still be accurate? - Goyo, SEP 26, 2009
although i've been learning spanish for so short, i am shocked. almost every single book stresses the concept of permanent/temp. state when discussing the topis ser/estar... This is the beauty of lgs. - bomberapolaca, SEP 26, 2009
2
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This question keeps coming up and people keep making reference to the temporary/permanent distinction but there are countless counter-examples.

"ser" is mostly about "defining characteristics" (which needn't be permanent). He's a student (ser). it is most unlikely that he will be a student for the rest of his life (a permanent condition), in fact, he may graduate tomorrow. He's a youth (ser); unless he dies soon, he will eventually cease to be an adolescent but, for now, that's the kind of person he is.He's dead (estar). One does not suggest that he is likely to come back to life (because his being dead is "temporary") but, instead, that that is his condition (not the "kind of person" he is).

Some terms, such as "casado", "soltero", jubilado" can present problems because they can be used with different senses. For example, for passport/immigration purposes, the question is intended to "classify"/"categorize" you. If you're casado/soltero and you intend to get divorced/married next year, they don't care (about your plans); they simply want to define the "kind" of person that you are.

For the most part, we do not make (or, at least, don't emphasize) this distinction in English. One case in English might be between saying "He's a bachelor." instead of "He's single/unmarried". Under normal circumstances, "bachelor" would be assumed to mean "never married"/(even) "not likely to marry". "single/unmarried"/"divorced" all suggest that being single is not part of his nature (a defining characteristic) but, rather, the situation in which he finds himself and that a suitable female may be able to both convert his condition, as well as his nature into a "married person".

updated OCT 28, 2011
posted by samdie
Great explanation. - --Mariana--, SEP 26, 2009
1
vote

You see them both used for soltera or soltero.

Using "es" might seem to imply that the person's singleness is a characteristic of them, while "está" is more of a temporary condition. At least that is one way to look at those verbs that is generally true.

So a priest es soltero.

But a Hollywood actor está soltero.

updated SEP 26, 2009
posted by Goyo
big thanks to both of you. so, there IS a difference... ahora todo esta claro. - bomberapolaca, SEP 26, 2009
There IS difference in meaning, but there is not in translation into english :) "She is single." - Behemoth, SEP 26, 2009
0
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One way that someone told me to help with this problem is to think of the following:

Soy aburrido = I am boring.

Estoy aburrido = I am bored.

Él es bien vestido = He is always well dressed.

Él está bien vestido = He is well dressed (just now)

Él es un borracho. = He is a drunkard

Está borracho. = He is drunk.

updated FEB 23, 2012
edited by ian-hill
posted by ian-hill
Perfect...I love something easy to remember! - --Mariana--, SEP 26, 2009
How about a vote Marianne - por favor. - ian-hill, SEP 26, 2009
Perfecto exept that you have spelled aburrido wrong. - kenwilliams, SEP 26, 2009
Gracias Ken - I can't even claim it was a typo. - ian-hill, SEP 26, 2009
0
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Try to get hold of "Spanish Verbs: Ser and Estar by Juan & Susan Serrano" It explains the differences very well and is an excellent reference book. I have just started using it.

updated FEB 23, 2012
posted by 00a50c57
0
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So should it be soy casado or estoy casado, soy soltero or estoy soltero soy jubilado or estoy jubilado etc.? By the way where is Lazras these days I have not seen a post from him for ages?

updated SEP 26, 2009
posted by kenwilliams
I think he quit the forum. Sorry to say. - ian-hill, SEP 26, 2009
Yes, he did. - --Mariana--, SEP 26, 2009
0
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Soltera does not mean she is alone it means she is single i.e. not married to say she is alone you say está sola he is alone está solo.

updated SEP 26, 2009
posted by kenwilliams
0
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Ser is a thing you are. Yo soy El Moreno That's what I am. When they see me, they know that's Chris, es El Moreno. The Black Guy. No es un moreno, pero es El Moreno. Not a random black guy, but The Black Guy. Now...it could never be anything else, and it will not change, therefore Ser is what you use. Estar would be Ahi esta El Moreno, y esta afuera. There is The Black Guy and he is stationed out side. But I might be esta over there or esta upstairs or esta in the bathroom. Esta changes, Ser generally doesn't. wink Your example, es soltera, would be to say, she is soltera, by her very nature, she is alone and will continue to be alone hasta forever. Esta soltera is she is alone now. Tomorrow, no se. But in this moment, she's alone.

updated SEP 26, 2009
edited by ChamacoMalo
posted by ChamacoMalo
0
votes

ser is used for describing what a person is "like". such as tall, short, fat, thin, blonde, mean, nice, friendly, also where a person is from ex. ¿De donde eres? Soy de los Estados Unidos. estar is used to describe emotion and location. such as if a person is happy, angry, excited, annoyed. If you want to say you're at school, you would say "estoy en la escuela" not "soy en la escuela". it can describe how someone is, if they're sick, healthy, stressed, depressed, if they're doing well, which are basically answers to the question ¿Cómo estas?

Hope this helps! LOL

updated SEP 26, 2009
posted by HPfanRinnie
0
votes

i hope this helps. I was told that Ser is used to describe how something is that cant change, "Soy walter" since my name is walter that wont change or that im male wont change Estar is used more with feelings or situations that can change, "Estoy feliz" thats something that can change i might be happy one minute or furious that next or even sick. but it also depends on how you use the expression, Está soltera, literaly means is single but its more about something that can change, Es soltera also means is single but would probably be more used if you were talling someone your the only person in your family that wont change. i hope this helps.

updated SEP 26, 2009
posted by walterdud777
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