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Thread: Had X do Y

  1. #1
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    Had X do Y

    How would you say, "I had X do Y" as in, "I had my accountant do my taxes", or "I had my daughter do her homework"?

  2. #2
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    Re: Had X do Y

    I don't think there is an exact equivalent for " I had X do Y".
    You can ask, beg, tell, convince, command, order, force, etc., somebody to do something. So there is a whole list of verbs you could use.

  3. #3
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    Re: Had X do Y

    It's similar to "I got X to do Y". Perhaps you could use להשיג? I'm not really sure how to use the verb in this case: השגתי שרואה החשבון שלי סידר את המסים ?

  4. #4
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    Re: Had X do Y

    להשיג means to achieve, to obtain. Normally there is an effort behind achieving something. If you say השגתי שרואה החשבון שלי יסדר* את המסים it could mean
    that he could not or didn't want to do your taxes, but nevertheless you got him to do them (maybe you paid him more, or you begged him to do it or you made him an offer he could not refuse
    , etc.).
    If you had your daughter do her homework, you would not use להשיג unless you had to work really hard to get her to do them.

    * In this case you use the future, even if things happened in the past. (First you got him to, later he did the taxes).

  5. #5
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    Re: Had X do Y

    This has been going round my mind all day. I think it is fairly hard to translate well because it is a very English-specific phrase. I think the meaning is somewhere around 'I made (but not forceably) my accountant do my taxes'. I suppose it suggests that 'I asked him politely and he did it with no problems'. The closest meaning I've been able to think of is 'I used my accountant to sort out my taxes'. Could you say השתמשתי ברואה החשבון שלי כדי לסדר את המסים? Nevertheless this still adds a slightly different shade to the meaning.

  6. #6
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    Re: Had X do Y

    You can't really say that, להשתמש במישהו has a negative connotation: it means you are taking advantage, not being fair, simply "using" or even exploiting the other person.
    Last edited by anipo; 8th February 2013 at 9:34 AM.

  7. #7
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    Re: Had X do Y

    I thought it might, it has a slight connotation of that in English.

    I asked about this in the Spanish forum (http://forum.wordreference.com/showthread.php?t=2575876) and I have some people saying that it is not necessary, while others suggest the equivalent of (ביקש ממישהו משהו, (ועשה אותו. It is a slightly different meaning to "had X do Y" but that seems the closest you can get. I'm also suggesting "arrange that someone do something", which I think covers most of the subtleties of meaning in English, yet I don't know if that is acceptable in Spanish or Hebrew. Would it work?
    Last edited by airelibre; 7th February 2013 at 7:51 PM.

  8. #8
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    Re: Had X do Y

    You could say "...סידרתי שרואה החשבון שלי", but then you would have to change the next word in order to avoid repetition. This does not have to affect the meaning:
    "סידרתי שרואה החשבון יכין את המיסים שלי".

    However, "סידרתי שבתי תכין את שעורי הבית שלה" does not sound good, unless you mean you arranged, for example, that she could do her homework at a friend's house, or that she could do them now because the teacher had not wanted to accept them because she had not done them when they were due.

  9. #9
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    Re: Had X do Y

    "...סידרתי שרואה החשבון שלי" is closer to "I've made the arrangements..." and not to the simple "I arranged...". This is why it doesn't sit quite well with the second phrase:
    "סידרתי שבתי תכין את שיעורי הבית שלה".

    Regarding the previous sentence "I used my accountant to sort out my taxes", we use the verb "להיעזר".
    "נעזרתי ברואה החשבון שלי על מנת לסדר את המיסים".

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