ir de perlas - A España le iría de perlas la guillotina

ptak30

Senior Member
My question concerns the construction of sentences using ir de perlas (and ir de perilla(s) which is not in the WR dictionary though venir de perillas is?). I came across ir de perlas in Perez-Reverte's Cabo Trafalgar. -
"A España le iría de perlas la guillotina, opina"
A loose translation would be " A Spanish guillotine would be great, he thought". It's a Frenchman's thoughts concerning Spanish aristocrats in the combined navy. I'm not sure that I could explain the function of the le in the phrase - though it sounds right.
It looks to me like the way a sentence with the verb gustar would be constructed. I would be grateful if someone would confirm this - or put me right :)
 
  • loudspeaker

    Senior Member
    British English
    Me ( a mí) está de perlas...me viene de perlas... it comes just right or it suits me perfectly.

    Les ( a ellos) parece de perlas....it all seems splendid to them.

    'It looks to me like the way a sentence with the verb gustar would be constructed.' :thumbsup:
     
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    blasita

    Senior Member
    Spain. Left six years ago
    Hello Ptak.

    Yes, le is correct and fine there.

    A España le (IO duplicated) iría de perlas la guillotina (subject). Yes, de perlas means 'muy bien/muy oportuno', and this expression is very often used with 'venir' but can go together with other verbs (e.g. also parecer).

    Example: Me ha venido de perlas esa semana de vacaciones en la playa. Me = ¿a quién le ha venido de perlas? A mí. You could also use de perilla/-s: same meaning ('me ha venido muy bien') and grammatical structure.

    Hope this helps. Saludos.
     

    ptak30

    Senior Member
    Hi blasita and loudspeaker
    Thank you both for your help. I've not been able to find a satisfying explanation of the duplicate indirect object in Spanish as yet - I'm still looking.
    I usually just accept that the duplicate is right for certain verbs and can be omitted for others - and try to learn by listening and reading. I'm glad that you both have confirmed the way that "ir de perlas" is actually used.
    In some of the examples I would have used the duplicate e g A mí me ha venido de perlas etc treating it somewhat like me toca a mí. Would that sound wrong?
    Regards
     

    blasita

    Senior Member
    Spain. Left six years ago
    Hi blasita and loudspeaker
    Thank you both for your help. I've not been able to find a satisfying explanation of the duplicate indirect object in Spanish as yet - I'm still looking.
    Ptak, duplicating the indirect object in Spanish is commonplace (especially in spoken language) and always possible.

    This may be of help (it's in Spanish):
    En el caso del complemento indirecto, la coaparición del pronombre átono es normalmente opcional y suele ser lo más frecuente, especialmente en la lengua oral [...] En general, suele ser necesaria la duplicación en los verbos cuyo complemento indirecto designa, no al destinatario de la acción, sino al que la experimenta, como ocurre con los llamados verbos de «afección» (psíquica o física), como molestar, divertir, interesar, cansar, etc., y con muchos otros, como parecer, resultar, convenir, etc.: Le molestó a tu padre que no vinieras; Le ha cansado a la abuela el paseo; Le pareció bien al jefe nuestro plan; No le conviene al niño comer tantos dulces. [...]
    More here: DPD.

    Regards.
     

    elprofe

    Senior Member
    Spanish (Spain)
    No, you can duplicate the indirect object by putting both "a mí" and "me", but it sounds as if you were emphasizing that it has been you who has found it useful, suggesting that others may not find it useful/of help...
     

    blasita

    Senior Member
    Spain. Left six years ago
    Ah, OK, I think I understand. As Elprofe says, in your last sentence 'a mí' is optional and emphatic.

    I think I understand now your question: in "A España le iría de perlas ...", you cannot omit the pronoun because the complement (A España) precedes the verb, so you would not say "A España iría de perlas ...":
    Si el complemento tónico no es un pronombre personal y aparece antepuesto al verbo, también es obligatoria la coaparición del pronombre átono, tanto si el complemento es directo como indirecto: A tu hermano lo vi en el cine (no *A tu hermano vi en el cine); La tarta la llevo yo (no *La tarta llevo yo); A mi madre le he dicho la verdad (no *A mi madre he dicho la verdad); A Juan le han denegado la beca (no *A Juan han denegado la beca). Deben diferenciarse estas construcciones, con el complemento tónico antepuesto y coaparición del pronombre átono, de aquellas en que la anteposición del complemento es enfática, contrastiva, en las que no coaparece el pronombre átono: Un libro te daré, y no dos (y no *Un libro te lo daré, y no dos).
     
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