HomeQ&Aliteral meaning of "tal vez"

literal meaning of "tal vez"

1
vote

I understand the word (or, is it a phrase?) means "perhaps" or "maybe" but I am wondering, just out of curiosity, what these two words literally mean if they are separated, and how, etymologically, do they eventually become "maybe" ?

tal = such

vez = time

such time?

:D I know we are supposed to just accept and not over-analyze etymological roots, but I'm just curious, so this question is just for fun. :D

Gracias.

29828 views
updated JUL 13, 2016
posted by miloszdom
It's perfectly alright to try to discover the history of the word. It enriches the learning experience. "Such time" sounds a plausible reason how the phrase has evolved to mean "perhaps". Can you come over ? Answer : such time as when I am free. Perhaps - Kingsley244, JUL 13, 2016

8 Answers

3
votes

Here's a good one for you: "No tiene nada que ver contigo" It has nothing to do with you. What is that "ver" doing in there? Most things about Spanish are easy but this is the hardest part...some phrases just make no sense when broken down. How about this one: "Por sentado no doy" which means something like "I don't assume". Of course, none of my mexican friends have ever heard the second phrase but everyone on the internet has, right guys? shock

updated OCT 19, 2009
posted by jeezzle
Quite right. - ChamacoMalo, OCT 18, 2009
Now they're the things i write down..things you might hear on the telly..but not understand at first blush... - nonombre, OCT 19, 2009
3
votes

My Spanish teacher told me to stop trying to translate everything literally, or my head would explode. So I stopped.

updated OCT 18, 2009
posted by Jack-OBrien
How does your head feel now? - nizhoni1, OCT 18, 2009
1
vote

Haha you said this was just for fun, so it's a fine question. I have curiosities about English words and roots all the time, and it's my native tongue. All it does is enrich your knowledge of a language. I don't see a problem in thinking too much.

updated OCT 8, 2013
posted by Fiona_HierbaHelada
1
vote

You teacher is quite right. English and Spanish are different. Taking out the trash is sacando la basura, but there are instances where the words don't quite fit. It's the same, just the way of describing it is different. Example....in English...I am 43 years old (don't tell anyone), in spanish, I have 43 years. Same thing...different way of describing it. wink

updated OCT 18, 2009
posted by ChamacoMalo
0
votes

Couple more in the same vein, just for fun. Not an answer obviously. Never looked up the literal translation

Tal para cual - two of a kind Con tal qué - provided that (when followed by a subjunctive)

updated OCT 8, 2013
posted by dennywells
0
votes

Why don't you ask yourself what "per" and "haps" mean?

updated OCT 7, 2013
posted by Slider
0
votes

You are thinking too much...it means maybe. wink

updated AGO 22, 2013
posted by ChamacoMalo
pues..quizas ;-P - picopelicano, AGO 22, 2013
0
votes

Just for comparison the meaning of

"so" vs "so so"

"yes" vs "yes yes"

wink

updated OCT 18, 2009
posted by Behemoth
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