The verb llevar

4
votes

I was looking up all the different meanings to the word llevar and found in my Merriam-Webster's dictionary that it's also used as an auxiliary verb: to have.
The example given in the dictionary is this:
Llevo mucho tiempo buscándolo: I've been looking for it for a long time.

I would like to know can this word be used just like the other auxiliary verb: haber or only in special cases with some grammatical rule'

8379 views
updated ENE 28, 2010
posted by Cherub1

4 Answers

4
votes

the verb llever as an auxiliary is used like in English the tense present perfect continuous.

This is true but does not mean that the English "has/have been doing ..." can always be expressed in Spanish by "llevar + gerundio". There is an additional restriction on the Spanish usage (that does not exist for English) i.e. there also needs to be an expression of "measure of time". In the English translation this will almost always take the pattern "have been doing X for 'time-expression'".

The measure/duration can be quite precise ("LLevo 23 minutos estudiando.") or quite vague ("Llevas mucho tiempo escribiendo.") but it needs to be a measure of time. Thus it's fine to say "LLevo veinte años viviendo aquí.". However the English "I've been living here since I was five years old." would be "He vivido (or just "vivo") aquí desde que tenía cinco años." ("llevar" won't work here).

updated ABR 5, 2013
posted by samdie
Great explanation!
3
votes

Hi cherub, the verb llevar as an auxiliary is used like in English the tense present perfect continuous.

the use: llevar+gerundio

Llevo comiendo
llevo andando
llevo escribiendo
llevo vivendo

In English:
I have been eating (for...)
I have been walking...
I have been writing...
I have been living....

updated ENE 28, 2010
edited by 0057ed01
posted by 00494d19
Snagged a couple of your famous typos - "llevar" typed as "llever," and "have" as "ahve."
0
votes

Are there similar restrictions on the use of other verbs of motion or continuation with gerunds?

updated ENE 28, 2010
posted by lorenzo9
0
votes

Entiendo ahora. Gracías.

updated JUL 4, 2008
posted by Cherub1