Marcel Proust ?When we have passed..., the soul of the **child we were**
I am confused about how to translate this passage from Marcel Proust "...When we have passed a certain age, the soul of the ''child we were'' The child we were: is this a case where the imperfect tense is appropriate (el alma del niño éramos) or is this a preterite tense (el alma del niño fuimos)? It seems like it should be imperfect because this isn't a case of a "completed action." Also, the translator on this site (which I think is helpful only in giving clues to translation) suggests "el alma del niño que se". What is que se'? Of course, I know the original text is in French not English. But I don't know French.
Yes, in Enlish they would be the same but in Spanish I have been learning that there is a difference in the verb form depending upon whether the action in the past is completed or not. I checked the Spanish version of First Corinithians 13 (famous passage about "when I was a child, I spake as a child...)
I Corintios 13:11 ^
Cuando yo ''era'' niño, hablaba como niño, pensaba como niño, juzgaba como niño, mas cuando ya fuí hombre hecho, dejé lo que era de niño.
Hmmm, this translation uses the imperfect form (era) so I guess that is the best form'''?
Any other ideas from Spanish speakers out there?
p.s. the kitty cat is multilingual and he helps me with my spanish!
el alma del nino que eramos or el alma del nino que fuimos are the same translation
que se means were
from verb to be
nice kittie cat by the way!