a little of “than”, a little of “that”

Mucha gente confude than y that. Las dos se traducen como que, pero sus usos son muy distintos.

Than se usa para comparaciones:

I’m taller than my brother. (Soy más alto que mi hermano.)
I’m taller that my brother.

That se usa en frases como estas:

Where is the wine that was on the table? (¿Dónde está el vino que estaba en la mesa?)

Muchas veces es opcional:

The books (that) he uses are very old. (Los libros que usa son muy viejos.)

She said (that) she didn’t know. (Dijo que no sabía.)

Ejercicios

Traduce estas frases al inglés:

1. Un kilo de patatas cuesta menos que un kilo de tomates.
2. El coche que está en el garage no es suyo.
3. Compró una casa que todavía estaba en obras.
4. Cómo estudias es más importante que cuanto estudias.
5. Me dijiste que estabas ocupada.
6. Londres es más caro que París.

Respuestas:

1. A kilo of potatoes costs less than a kilo of tomatoes.
2. The car that’s in the garage isn’t his.
3. She bought a house that’s still under construction.
4. How you study is more important than how much you study.
5. You told me (that) you were busy.
6. London is more expensive than Paris.

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Posted by Zac on Dec 1, 2008 in Exercises, Grammar |

6 Comments

Nayran
Dec 17, 2008 at 3:45 pm

Frase 4>>
The way you study its more important than the time you spend studiying
(Seri correcta?¿)


 
zacht111
Dec 18, 2008 at 12:20 am

Si, está muy bien, sobre todo to uso de “spend”. Igual esta sería un poquito mejor:

The way you study is more important than how much time you spend studying.

Zac


 
Dave
Jan 5, 2009 at 4:32 pm

There is an ambiguity in Nayran’s proposed translation: “the time you spend studying” means, to my ear, what time of day you study, cuándo, instead of how much. That phrasing seems to imply that a careful time budget has been prepared and one is carefully considering the question, should I study after breakfast or before bedtime?

“time” is fairly implied in “how much you study” just like “food” is implied in “how much you eat” or “money” is implied in “how much does this cost?”

“how much” is important because the distinction between “how” and “how much” which of course is invisible here because “how” is hiding behind its synonym “the way” but in general there is a whole class of debatable advice on living of the form

How you X is more important than how much you X

which of course represents the universal tension between quality and quantity, the contemplation of which has driven many men (especially editors) mad.

I am thrilled that Zac’s Spanish is apparently now better than his English 🙂

Dave (Zac’s cousin, en los Estados Unidos de América)

http://translate.google.com/translate_t?hl=en#es|en|C%C3%B3mo%20estudias%20es%20m%C3%A1s%20importante%20que%20cuanto%20estudias. doesn’t do well at all!


 
zacht111
Jan 5, 2009 at 9:47 pm

Thanks for the comment, David, and good to hear from you!
You make some interesting points, but I must say I have some doubts about what you say about “the time you spend studying”.

I think what you mean is that you can say “I spend the morning studying”, for example, and that that tells you when and not how much time. I would argue that it tells you both, but imprecisely. For example , if you spend ten minutes studying in the morning you can’t claim to “spend the morning studying”. “Spending the morning” implies spending most, if not the whole, morning doing something, just as if you say “he spends his money on drinking and hookers” it means he spends the lion’s share on those two things.

Yes, that eternal tension between quantity and quality. . . I personally tend to lean on the “less is more” side of things, but one of the most important things when learning a language is the sheer number of hours you put in.

See you! Zach

I


 
cristina
Feb 14, 2010 at 11:44 pm

hola!!

disculpa he descubiero tu blog y ya estoy comenzando ha entender varias cosas que daba por sentando y te podría hacer una sugerencia….los audios que has colocado en tus entradas será que puedas recopilarlas en una carpeta zip?? cada 3 o 6 meses o por año, es que en la anterior lección desee bajar el audio de las palabras y no pude, me gustaria poder bajarlas y así escucharlas mientras viajo en bus o estoy realizando otras actividades, gracias y sólo es una sugerencia.

maravilloso tu esfuerzo!!
que tengas mucho éxito en todo lo que te emprendas!!


 
Pedro
Nov 8, 2010 at 4:48 pm

muy educativo, Gracias


 

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