Apostrophes

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2LeftFeet

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Dec 1, 2006
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I have 2 questions. In Spanish are apostrophes normally used? I know that they are used in the DR and here lies question #2.

When they are used ---when are they used? Are they only used with certain words? Which words are they or are they too many to note.

Tu 'ta bien-----Tu esta bien?----
Pa' adelante---Para adelante---

Thanks
 

Ivanita

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Dec 25, 2006
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No, seeing as Spanish doesn't use hardly any contractions, there aren't apostophes. The examples you gave are examples of cut off words with apostrophes indicating where the word was cut off. Like in English, "chillin' ", "holdin' ", ect.
 

Chirimoya

Moderator - East Coast & Headline News
Dec 9, 2002
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And my pet hate - the contrived D' - especially when it's D'something that begins with a consonant.
 

Hillbilly

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Jan 1, 2002
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D'Chiri's Comida for instance???????????????????????????????AAARRRRGGGHHHH!

Talk about Loanings!!

Love,

HB
 

Marianopolita

Moderator Spanish Forum
Dec 26, 2003
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Colloquial Speech-

2LF-

These are good questions and the response by Ivanita is excellent. To add to what was said in post #2 apostrophes are not used in Spanish and they are considered a property of informal speech. Having said that there are no rules per se however, as stated above they are placed where the word is cut off. Even though there are no formal rules where the apostrophe goes it still must be logical and follow certain phonetic patterns of the language.

The example you provided pa? adelante would be best phonetically as pa' lante. Other examples include pa' lla, pa' ti, que vengan to'. There are so many and these colloquial forms are not exclusive to the DR, these are colloquialisms that exist in the Spanish language. If you want more examples just look at the titles of salsa, merengue and bachata songs. Make a list and observe the patterns.


-LDG.
 

Marianopolita

Moderator Spanish Forum
Dec 26, 2003
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Colloquial Speech con't-

2LF-

I have a passion for tropical music therefore it was easy for me to browse through my music collection and select some sample titles of songs to show you the usage of colloquial speech specific to your examples in the Spanish language.

Un poquito de to'- Paulito FG - S
Pa'l a?o que viene- Son de Cali- S
Pa' la playa -Pochy y su Cocoband- M
Pa' tra y Pa' lante - Pochy y su Cocoband- M
Pa' la calle- Los Toros Band- M
Fuego con to' - Rikarena- M
Pa' rato- Rikarena- M
Pa'l bailador- Joe Arroyo- S
Cari?o por "to lo lao"- Manol? Manol?- M
Salsa pa' los triunfadores- Orquesta Tabaco y Ron-S
Guaguanc? pa'l que sabe- Quinto Mayor- S
T? no sabes na'- Quinto Mayor- S

Code-

S= Salsa
M= Merengue

In formal Spanish studies colloquialisms and informal speech are topics discussed in specialized fields such as sociolinguistics, dialectology and philology. However, on an informal level you can make your own observations about these aspects of the language. You will also note that similar word short forms occur with verbs as well and not only with the parts of speech given in the examples above.

These examples of colloquialisms or informal speech are inherent in the Spanish language. They are used by speakers of all levels of society although education and the socioeconomic level of an individual do play a factor in the degree of usage by a speaker, socioethinic group or speech community. The more exposure you have to Spanish used in all facets, the more you will see examples of colloquial speech such as these and other colloquial aspects of the language.

In formal Spanish such as essays, textbooks, newspaper articles etc. you will not see these forms unless they are used as examples. However, in day to day speech, TV shows, novels (speech of the characters portrayed), songs etc. you will definitely hear and see a broad array of informal speech and especially the examples referenced above. It's what I call the "live" version of Spanish which is a vital and fundamental part of language acquisition. As important as the formal study of Spanish is for grammar purposes when the average person speaks the textbook remains on the shelf. This is not to say people don't speak well as a result, however, this is to reiterate that informal speech is just as much a part of Spanish as informal speech is in any language. This is how you can have some fun too as you learn in stages.

IMO sometimes these colloquial patterns are used in the written language to catch one's attention. A few months ago while reading a Panamanian newspaper the heading was what drew my attention to the article- "To' pa' ti y na' pa' m? ". Chances are if the heading had been written in formal Spanish I would not have read it but the informal speech used in the heading caught my attention which was most likely the desired effect by the journalist.

Another example is the suppressed [d] of the past participle ending -ado and in other parts of speech. Using songs again as an example you will hear 'ao' instead of 'ado' by many speakers. In modern day Spanish analysis this usage is extremely widespread crossing all levels of speech. Examples of song titles- El hombre lleg? parao' -Pochy y su Cocoband, No est?s amargao- Celiz Cruz.

In short keep observing, don't limit your exposure. The Spanish language is broad and diverse.


-LDG.
 
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