HomeQ&AMi secretario me acompañará a menos que...

Mi secretario me acompañará a menos que...

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If I want to say "My secretary will accompany me unless he dies," I would be inclined to complete this sentence with "se muera." However, I've been taught that the subjunctive should only be used in a relative clause if the subject is different from that of the main clause. Since the subject is the secretary in both clauses, should I use the infinitive instead and just say "que morir"? That doesn't seem to make sense, and doesn't seem right to me, but this does seem to be a case where that rule about the subjects applies. What do I do in a case like this'

2299 views
updated FEB 4, 2009
posted by Brad-Gibbons

6 Answers

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Thanks, everyone!

updated FEB 4, 2009
posted by Brad-Gibbons
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hh said:

However, I've been taught that the subjunctive should only be used in a relative clause if the subject is different from that of the main clause.

Either you've been taught the wrong rule, or you've don't remember it correctly. Most likely, it was:

Given the right conditions... instead of using indicative, you have two choices: use subjunctive, or if the subject of both the main sentence and the subordinate clause are the same, use infinitive instead.

So, the rule only applies once indicative is not an option.

:

MI secretario me acompanara al menos que el se muera

Much better without that absurd "él".

updated FEB 3, 2009
posted by lazarus1907
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MI secretario me acompanara al menos que el se muera

suerte

updated FEB 3, 2009
posted by hh
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However, I've been taught that the subjunctive should only be used in a relative clause if the subject is different from that of the main clause.

Who said that'? Stunning.

Your sentence is correct.

...que morir
would not make sense.

updated FEB 2, 2009
posted by 00494d19
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I think you're incorrect, but since I can't understand your terminology I'm going to refrain from trying to give you a reason.
In my opinion "unless" is a subordinate conjunction and introduces a subordinate clause which evokes different rules from the ones that you are trying to apply.
A relative clause starts with a relative pronouns (which , who, that, what, etc.) and usually serves as an adjective modifying a noun. We don't have that here.
I suggest that you look into the subjunctives and subordinate clauses and see if you can find your answer.

You might find this interesting.

http://www.spanish.cl/Grammar/Games/A_Menos_Que_Subjuntivo.htm

updated FEB 2, 2009
posted by 0074b507
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Oh, I think I got it - that rule only applies to noun clauses. Is that right'

updated FEB 2, 2009
posted by Brad-Gibbons
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