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Spanish 101A

Spanish 101B

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Some verbs have changes in meaning when they are conjugated in the Preterite vs. the Present Tense.

This is because the Preterite Past Tense handles completed actions only. Therefore, it has to somehow make the verb's present tense meaning into an event.

For example, Querer means "to Want". "Wanting" is a description of a state we are in. Wanting or liking something is a feeling. So when we make that "wanting" into action, it becomes "tried". See some of the other feelings changed into action below:



Present tense

Preterite tense

Querer Quiero "I want.." Quise "I tried to.."
No Querer  No quiero "I don't want.." No quise "I refused to.."
Conocer Conozco
"I know someone /some place"
"I met someone (first time)"
Saber Sé  "I know a fact.." Supe  "I found out.., discovered"
Poder Puedo  "I can, am able to" Pude  "I succeeded to, managed to.."
No Poder No puedo "I can't, I'm not able..." No pude "I failed to.."