HomeQ&ADo you say "matar (conj.) + a + noun" or just "matar (conj.) + noun"?

Do you say "matar (conj.) + a + noun" or just "matar (conj.) + noun"?

1
vote

For example.. Él mata mi gato. O Él mata a mi gato. Thanks!

2917 views
updated MAR 1, 2010
posted by dkurz3
and no subject pronouns please;) - 00494d19, MAR 1, 2010

2 Answers

0
votes

You will find many cases contrary to this but the rule is:

In Spanish, direct objects that are both human and specific require a special marker (the preposition a "to").

Example:

Pedro besó a Lucía. = Peter kissed Lucy. (Literally, "Peter kissed to Lucy")

Non-animate direct objects do not usually allow this marker, even if they are specific:

Pedro besó el retrato. = Peter kissed the picture.

Yet, some animate objects that are specific can optionally bear the marker:


Differential object marking (DOM) is a linguistic phenomenon that is present in more than 300 languages apart from Spanish.

updated MAR 1, 2010
edited by mediterrunio
posted by mediterrunio
0
votes

If your attitude towards the cat is very personal (like it was your friend), then I think saying "Él mató a mi gato" would sound fine. But if you are telling someone that he "just" killed a cat (any cat, one you don't really care about) you would say: "Él mató un gato." But let's wait for other opinions.

updated MAR 1, 2010
posted by Issabela
great thanks! - dkurz3, MAR 1, 2010
SpanishDict is the world's most popular Spanish-English dictionary, translation, and learning website.
© Curiosity Media Inc.