Learning the Spanish Language — Project Day 46

Adjective pronouns

Replace nouns omitted, because they are

  • Understood
  • Irrelevant
  • Unnecessary


  • Before verb — subject pronouns
  • After verb — object pronouns

So that answers a question I've asked myself several times during this project. More like English than I'd suspected. So the problematic adjectives and prepositions must be of another kind.

English equivalents

  • The big one
  • Somebody

Qualitative Adjective Pronouns

Describing some characteristic of the missing noun. Most frequently used in English when we put 'one' at the end of the statement, e.g. "I chose the tall one" — "Elegí al alto".

It keeps the gender and number and the relevant article — of the omitted noun. And represents the complete meaning of the omitted noun, within the sentence.

I committed 3/10 errors of substance on the exercises. While they were down to poor attention rather than poor comprehension, that's an unnacceptable error rate.

Obviously, there were the usual incidental errors of accent. The two worrying incidental errors were

  • Forgot that preferir was an 'ir' verb
  • Forgot that 'pensar' implies 'to plan' — creer 'to think'

Neither are errors I'm likely to make often — since they are similar to Italian. But worth noting and watching out for — to prevent the occasional innattention error becoming a habit.

Direct and Indirect Object Pronouns

Are not a big problem for me, but during today's Pimsleur lesson, I did find myself mixing up the indirect forms for 'usted' — i.e. being uncertain when to use 'le' rather than 'lo' or 'a'. Another comparatively rare stumble to keep an eye on.


I did a couple of ridiculously easy 'Practice Makes Perfect Vocabulary' exercises — and still managed to get one wrong. Although only because the solution wanted "€50,00" rather than "€50" — which really isn't a real-world case.

I'm trying these vocabulary exercises, simply because I ran out of preposition exercises. I suspect that I'll keep doing them as an 'option', but replace the preposition exercises with general grammar exercises in the task list.

Knowing How To — 'saber'

When you follow a form of saber by an infinitive of a verb describing an action, 'saber' alone conveys the sense of 'know how' — so you'd say "sé cantar", "sabemos esquiar", etc. Adding 'cómo' would be unecessary and ungrammatical.

As often, I got all the substantive questions in my exercises right, but made some noteworthy incidental errors:

  • Missed some emphasis from the English original — 'muy'
  • Spelled 'bailar' with two Ls
  • Forgot the gender of puerta

Repeating Ambiguous Indirect Objects

Today's Language Transfer exercises employed several examples of the kind of potentially ambiguous indirect objects discussed yesterday — e.g. "le gusta" could be referring to 'el', 'ella' or 'usted'. Which gave me an opportunity to further practice expressions like "se lo dimos, a ellas" or "le gusta, a ella", etc.

Handy, but I know that I'm going to need to practice this a lot more, before it becomes even half-way comfortable.


A really good day, enabled by

  • Good night's sleep
  • Bright sunlight
  • Pleasant cycling

Learning Tasks Checklist

Task M T W T F S S
Word/phrase aural+oral
Sentence aural+oral
Socratic aural+oral
Verb exercises
Pronoun exercises
Preposition exercises
Physical exercise
Non-subbed video
Subbed video
Research lang. learning
List 'issues'
Prepare materials

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