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used to / accustomed to????

Discussion in 'Spanish-English Grammar / Gramática Español-Inglés' started by euge, Jun 11, 2005.

  1. euge Senior Member

    Spanish
    We generally teach "used to" for habits in tha past but yesterday, i saw "accustomed to" in a text

    I have always thought that accustomed was a spanglish but now i see that it is part of the language. Which is the difference with used to?

    thanks!
     
  2. VenusEnvy

    VenusEnvy Senior Member

    Maryland, USA
    English, United States
    Yes, "accustomed to" is definitely not Spanglish. I can tell you that "used to" is more informal than its counterpart. I can't think of many examples where you would use one and not the other. They are synonyms.
     
  3. charmedboi82 Senior Member

    USA, English
    I would say the main difference beside the one that Venus already gave is the fact that they're not equal constructions as you said them. The complete constructions are:

    used to:
    to be accustomed to:

    I used to go to the beach during the summer.
    I was accustomed to going to the beach during the summer.

    In the above, the 'was' HAS TO be present for the sentence to make sense. For me, 'accustomed' seems as though you had to "train yourself" to do it and carries with it a greater chance that you no longer do the action that you were accustomed to. Like Venus said, 'accustomed to' is much more formal than 'used to'; therefore, 'used to' is much more common.
     
  4. euge Senior Member

    Spanish
    thanks!!!!!!!
     
  5. Edwin

    Edwin Senior Member

    Tampa, Florida, USA
    USA / Native Language: English
    Pero sí se puede decir:

    I was used to going to the beach during the summer.
    I was accustomed to going to the beach during the summer.

     
  6. panjandrum

    panjandrum PongoMod

    Belfast, Ireland
    English-Ireland (top end)
    I used to go to the beach in the summer.
    I could imagine reading the second sentence (with accustomed) in Dickens or Austen, but it does not seem like modern usage.
     
  7. VenusEnvy

    VenusEnvy Senior Member

    Maryland, USA
    English, United States
    "I was used to walking to the beach every summer."

    What's wrong with that sentence?

    Ex. As an adult, I walk everywhere I go. I suppose it's because when I was younger, I was used to walking to the beach every summer.
     
  8. panjandrum

    panjandrum PongoMod

    Belfast, Ireland
    English-Ireland (top end)
    The change from going to walking makes a difference. It shifts the emphasis from the beach to the way you got there.
    There is nothing wrong with the sentence, but this is not a construction I would use, or expect to see used.
    Alternatives that would seem more natural, to me, include:
    "... I walked to the beach every summer.
    ... I always walked to the beach in the summer."
     
  9. Edwin

    Edwin Senior Member

    Tampa, Florida, USA
    USA / Native Language: English
    :cross: is in the ears of the hearer. :)

    Panjandrum, you can distinguish the two sentences if you wish, but to me they have the same meaning and I believe they are both grammatically correct. I agree that they are not particularly natural. I probably would never say either of them. There are plenty of thing that are grammatically correct that are not natural for one English speaker or the other. But, I believe that a :cross: means incorrect not unnatural.
     
  10. charmedboi82 Senior Member

    USA, English
    What makes you feel my sentence was wrong?
     
  11. panjandrum

    panjandrum PongoMod

    Belfast, Ireland
    English-Ireland (top end)
    It could very well be a matter of usage, but to me "I was used to ....." is as alien as "I will am going to ...".
    "I used to go..." does not, for me, carry the meaning of "I was accustomed to going...".
     
  12. Edwin

    Edwin Senior Member

    Tampa, Florida, USA
    USA / Native Language: English
    ''I used to go'' doesn't mean the same thing as ''I was used to going'' to me either.

    How about the sentence

    "I've grown used to your face.''

    as an alternative version of the My Fair Lady line

    ''I've grown accustomed to your face.''

    If that doesn't sound natural to you, it must be a geographical matter. ''Used to'' as a substitute for ''accustomed to'' is something I've heard and said all my life . In fact, ''accustomed to'' sounds quite formal to me.

    Some examples from the web illustrating this use of ''used to'':

    I was used to such work. I had done this in 1928.

    On the TV news I was used to them showing a photo of a person's face in the corner of the screen with the name of that person underneath.

    I was used to having this guy around, ya know?

    It was a totally different environment here to what I was used to. However, I do feel that life is much better in England than in India

    y mucho más se puede encontrar si buscas ''I was used to'' con Google.

    Incluso, encontré lo siguiente sobre este mismo tema:


     
  13. charmedboi82 Senior Member

    USA, English
    Edwin, until I just reread your post, I didn't quite realize the difference that exists.

    'to be accustomed to/to be used to' they're pretty much equal
    'to use to' very distinct from the two above.

    Thanks!
     
  14. Edwin

    Edwin Senior Member

    Tampa, Florida, USA
    USA / Native Language: English
    I think for the part in red you meant to say ''used to be" as in ''I/he/she/they/you used to be''. Note that in this case ''use'' is only used in the past tense as stated in this definition from Dictionary.com (one of the many definitions of the verb use.)
    Used in the past tense followed by to in order to indicate a former state, habitual practice, or custom: Mail service used to be faster.
     
  15. charmedboi82 Senior Member

    USA, English
    Something like that, :). I changed it. Don't ever copy and paste!
     
  16. panjandrum

    panjandrum PongoMod

    Belfast, Ireland
    English-Ireland (top end)
    Edwin: Today, I find nothing unusual in the examples in your long post #12.
    Perhaps it is because I have become used to them:) And I agree with your comments.

    The "I was used to going to the beach...." sentence still feels clunky to me (a technical grammatical term meaning that if I heard this sentence I would have to pause for a moment to note the atypical usage before moving on).

    That may be a disruption in my brain due to a perceived (not actual) tense clash - caused by starting with "I was..." - clearly past - and then including "...going to..." which could be part of something future, but clearly isn't in this case.

    I rather suspect that I am now talking drivel
     
  17. steph.lewis Junior Member

    near London, UK
    English, UK
    Ay ay ay!! :rolleyes:

    How can it be wrong?
    "I found it hard to get used to the new city"
    "When I was little I was used to having lots of toys to play with; now I haven't got any"

    Or if you want to be really complex: "I never used to get used to new people quickly, whereas now I'm a real social animal" :p

    How is that alien?? "To be used to" and "I used to do something" are 2 completely different constructions, are they not?!
     
  18. germinal

    germinal Senior Member

    Bradford, England
    England English


    To my ear there is nothing wrong with either of these sentences and both have exactly the same meaning: I was habituated to going to the beach during the summer. :)

    Germinal.


    .

     

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