HomeQ&ADo I need to say yo, tu, el/ella,...ect. in front of every sentence?

Do I need to say yo, tu, el/ella,...ect. in front of every sentence?

1
vote

Example: I told the children my name: translation: Yo hable los niños mi llamo. Would the yo in front be right? Or does it just sound silly? I'm not sure half of my class does it, the other half doesn't.

38407 views
updated NOV 26, 2009
posted by MeLlamoSarah
Les dije mi nombre a los niños. - samdie, OCT 28, 2009

5 Answers

5
votes

Using Personal Pronouns

....................Personal Pronouns....................



Singular          Plural
1st Pers   Yo      Nosotros , Nosotras
2nd Pers Tú , Vos,      Vosotros, Vosotras,
3rd Pers Usted, Él , Ella      Ustedes, Ellos, Ellas

This information was taken from "Info Spanish Translation Blog" at this Web Site. Read it carefully and you will see that it is not only unnecessary to use personal pronouns frequently, it is also grammatically incorrect to use them except for emphasis or clarity of meaning.


One important difference between English and Spanish is in the use of personal pronouns. While in English we use them very often, this is not the case in Spanish. There is a reason for this. Let's take a look at conjugation for a common verb, like "say" ("decir" in Spanish):


I say................................|.................Yo digo
You say...........................|.................Tú dices
He/she says.....................|.................Él/ella/usted dice
We say............................|.................Nosotros decimos
You say...........................|.................Vosotros decís
They/You (plural) say........|................Ellos/ellas/ustedes dicen


 

It becomes clear that personal pronouns are essential in English in order to specify which person is "saying" something or performing any other action. However, in Spanish we can easily stick to:

Digo - Dices - Dice - Decimos - Decís - Dicen

 

Since all of these verb forms are different in writing and pronunciation, we really do not need the pronouns to specify the person performing the action. Every verb form already provides this information.

 

This is why in Spanish we rarely use personal pronouns in a text or in oral speech. We do use them for emphasis, or when the context may lead to confusion if we didn't use a personal pronoun. However, most of the time, the verb form alone is enough (and more than this is considered poor, unnatural style.)
{In my view, there is possibly (sometimes) doubt when using the 3rd person singular and 3rd person plural as to who is the person being spoken about and in those tenses it may be necessary to use the personal pronouns.}

 

English example:I think they noticed that we didn't attend.Personal pronouns:3

 

Spanish translation: Creo que se dieron cuenta de que no asistimos. Personal pronouns: 0!

 

The alternative translation with all personal pronouns "Yo creo que ellos se dieron cuenta de que nosotros no asistimos", even though grammatically correct, is really a pain to read or hear, and is anything but natural in Spanish...


  I thought this was a pretty full but concise explanation. I hope it helps you to understand this issue.

updated NOV 26, 2009
edited by Moe
posted by Moe
wonderful post, Moe:) - 00494d19, OCT 28, 2009
Great answer!! - --Mariana--, OCT 28, 2009
1
vote

Hi Sarah, I can give you a good piece of advice:

Forget about subject pronouns in Spanish!

Have a look at this thread, this has been discussed beforewink

updated OCT 28, 2009
posted by 00494d19
0
votes

Two things.

  1. You can choose to use the pronoun if you wish, but it is NOT absolutely necessary if you clearly show the proper verb tense. For example, you said, "Yo hablé...." That's fine, but so is, "Hablé a los niños..."

  2. Your example isn't fully correct. "Mi llamo" isn't my name. Since llamar is a verb, meaning "to call", be careful not to mix it up with other words. Mi nombre, is my name. Also, there's a few grammatical errors in there, but I'm not going to focus on those, as you didn't ask about it.

updated OCT 27, 2009
edited by Anagnorisis
posted by Anagnorisis
0
votes

Short answer is no. By the way, the preterit (simple past) is hablé (notice the accent). Using the first person preterit past, "yo" is implied or known, you don't have to speak it.

updated OCT 27, 2009
posted by Jack-OBrien
0
votes

It is not necessary to use them if it is clear in the context of the sentence. You want to avoid using them excessively.

updated OCT 27, 2009
posted by luhzon89
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