HomeQ&A"Keep quite and stay still."

"Keep quite and stay still."

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Background: While hiking with a friend who speaks Spanish we came upon a really big bobcat. I said "Mira allá" and pointed (not knowing the Spanish word for bobcat). I then said "Estaré silencio y permaneces" (wanting to say "keep quite and stay still") -- my friend gave me a strange look but understood. We got to observe the bobcat and take photos -- telescopic lenses (inexpensive), for about 1 to 1-1/2 minutes. I had time to ponder what I had said: "Estaré silencio y permaneces".

Since I do not pre-translate in my head when I speak Spanish I constantly make lots of mistakes (this one stayed with me).

Question 1.) Is the use of "estar" even correct here -- "estaré" or "estés".

Question 2.) Should I have said "Mantengas silencio y no se movia." or "Mantengas silencio y permanezcas."? Please porvide a good Spanish translation and in English as well for this command to a friend.

Como siempre mil gracias.

4477 views
updated FEB 17, 2009
posted by Daniel

10 Answers

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James Santiago said:

OK, thanks. I forgot that quieto and quiet can be false cognates.

In Latin, quies quietis meant stillness or rest, and its derivates have similar meanings, inquietus (restless), quiesco (not to move, to rest), quietus (still, inactive, calm), requies (-->requiem: rest). It was also used to mean quiet, in the sense that, if nothing moves, there is no sound either. English stuck to this last particular nuance, discarding the main one altogether. However, you have "quiescent", that keeps the main original Latin meaning, and of course, "tranquility" (trans + quies), which is a fusion of all those ideas, i.e. no noise, no (violent) motion.

The Indo-European root is 'qw(e)i-, meaning rest.

updated FEB 17, 2009
posted by lazarus1907
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James, estarse quieto means: to keep still, not moving, nothing to do with sound.

OK, thanks. I forgot that quieto and quiet can be false cognates.

updated FEB 17, 2009
posted by 00bacfba
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James Santiago said:

lazarus1907 said:

¡Cállate y estate quieto! (this sounds more bossy)

But does this convey the idea of "stay still"? "Stay still" is literally "No te muevas," and it has to do with motion, not sound. Of course, staying still usually also entails being quiet, but stillness is more a question of motion. And the idea here is "Don't make any sounds that the bobcat might hear, or any movements that the bobcat might see."

James, estarse quieto means: to keep still, not moving, nothing to do with sound.

still (parado)

' ¡estate quieto, -a! -> keep still!
' ¡quieto, -a ahí! -> don't move!

updated FEB 17, 2009
posted by 00494d19
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lazarus1907 said:

¡Cállate y estate quieto! (this sounds more bossy)

But does this convey the idea of "stay still"? "Stay still" is literally "No te muevas," and it has to do with motion, not sound. Of course, staying still usually also entails being quiet, but stillness is more a question of motion. And the idea here is "Don't make any sounds that the bobcat might hear, or any movements that the bobcat might see."

updated FEB 17, 2009
posted by 00bacfba
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Yea I know -- but that is just fine.

Heidita said:

jeje, claro que no! Estate...that's it.Pues sí, me gusta más así.Daniel I said it the other way round.

>

updated FEB 16, 2009
posted by Daniel
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jeje, claro que no! Estate...that's it.

Pues sí, me gusta más así.

Daniel I said it the other way round.

updated FEB 16, 2009
posted by 00494d19
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¡Cállate y estate quieto! (this sounds more bossy)

By the way, no accent on "estate".

updated FEB 16, 2009
posted by lazarus1907
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I like this one: "Estáte quieto y en silencio." It sounds like what might be said on a TV wildlife program -- which is what I wanted.

Heidita said:

It should be "keep quiet".Estaré silencio y permaneces

updated FEB 16, 2009
posted by Daniel
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It should be "keep quiet".

Estaré silencio y permaneces

updated FEB 16, 2009
posted by 00494d19
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Question 1.) Is the use of "estar" even correct here -- "estaré" or "estés".

quedate quieto is a better option.
Question 2.) Should I have said "Mantengas silencio y no se movia." or "Mantengas silencio y permanezcas."?

quedate callado is a better option
o
no hagas ruido
o
silencio
o
quedate quieto y callado.......keep still and quiet
there are more, but I got tired

PS I just know some one is going to write, callate la boca which is wrong, it should be cierra la boca which means close your mouth.

updated FEB 16, 2009
posted by 00769608
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