HomeQ&ATi vs. Usted When and where?

Ti vs. Usted When and where?

1
vote

According to what I've read on www.spanishdict.com Ti and Usted both mean "You" (denotation). But are these word really interchangeable (different connotations maybe)? If not, where and when would you use either one?

16435 views
updated FEB 24, 2011
posted by KingParraC

8 Answers

1
vote

ti, tú, and usted are all personal pronouns meaning you.

Tú and usted can be used as subject pronouns.

Ti can only be used as the object of a prepositional phrase..

usted can be used as an object of the prepositional phrase.

ti and tú are only used for you informally, while usted is used for you formal

Spanish has other personal pronouns meaning you such as te, vos. vosotros, vosotras, and ustedes.

This chart might help put them into prospective.

updated FEB 24, 2011
edited by 0074b507
posted by 0074b507
Spelling correction: This chart might help put them into perspective. - Intense, FEB 24, 2011
2
votes

Thank you everyone, you were very helpful. It seems like I didn't understand some of the underlying issues (formal/informal, etc) when I posted this. You cleared things up tremendously. Next time I will do some background research before posting a question like this, too. @megan5 I will be sure not to call my older relatives "tu" when I first meet them. (they are old fashioned)!!

¡Gracias!

updated JUL 13, 2010
posted by KingParraC
Haha, excellent. (Or your Spanish boss right). - margaretbl, JUL 12, 2010
2
votes

"Ti" and "Usted" definitely do mean "you", but there is a huge difference between them. And, you may be confusing "Ti" with "Tu" and/or "Tú", so just in case, "tú" is a subject pronoun, "tu" is a possessive pronoun and "ti" is an object pronoun. English uses the same word for "you"-subject and "you"-object, but in Spanish they are different.

Tú is the subject of the sentence: "Tú tienes un perro" (you have a dog)

Tu is a possessive pronoun: "tu casa" (your house)

Tí means that you are the object in a sentence, and is usually preceded by a preposition. "a tí"(to you) "para tí"(for you) "por tí"(by you)

"Usted" is a 'polite/formal' personal pronoun, used instead of "tú" (informal).

updated JUL 13, 2010
posted by Jack-OBrien
2
votes

Just want to clarify viajerpo's (correct) answer, based on my understanding. I'm an English speaker though, so I'm not 100% certain still of when to use which.

Tú is friendly, meaning, that when you are speaking to people that are your friends, your younger (and maybe older) siblings, and people who generally are younger than you, you can use tú. I'm not sure about the family members thing. Maybe a native can clarify that. However, I do know that my Spanish teacher got slapped in the face when he referred to his mother in the tú form. ha.

Usted is formal, meaning that in an type of formal setting, you need to use this address. When you meet someone for the first time, address them as usted. Also when you are speaking to someone older than you, a boss or employ (aka: any business situation), someone who is in a higher status than you in any social situation. Often, it is safe, if you are unsure, to just use usted. If the person you are addressing wants you to refer to them as tú, they will quickly tell you so. smile

On a side note, English has completely rejected our ¨tú" form - thee. I just think that that's interesting.

updated JUL 13, 2010
posted by megan5
It would depend on the parents. Some parents ask their children to refer to them as Sir and Madame. Normally tú would be used with family, hence, the term familiar. - 0074b507, JUL 12, 2010
0
votes

I've seen ti used in Ads though. Why does Budweiser say 'Esta Bud es para ti', and not usted?

updated FEB 24, 2011
posted by Pregunta
Trying to make the ad seem more personal and friendly I would imagine. [as if a Bud[dy] were saying it.] - 0074b507, FEB 24, 2011
0
votes

Likewise it can be para tí (informal- for you) or para usted (formal - for you)

¡Then again it may be para mi!

updated JUL 12, 2010
posted by aprender100
0
votes

Well don't forget 'tí' is also 'you' for example 'es para tí' 'it's for you' or ¿a ti te gusta el posole? Do you like posole?

updated JUL 12, 2010
posted by margaretbl
0
votes

Do you meann, "tu" and "Usted"?

Both mean you. tu is a friendly you. And usted is a formal you.

updated JUL 12, 2010
posted by viajero
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