Olvidar, Olvidarse, Olvidar de, Oldvidarse de

Francisco1982

Member
English - American
So, I have looked at and read about a dozen forums and even blogs concerning Olvidar and its various forms, but I still cannot find the answer to my specific question.

Are there other forms to the phrase "Se me olvidó." and can it be used as a sentence like "Se me olvidó las llaves."?, I ask because here in southern Texas I have been told by a great many that the ONLY way to use Olvidar or Olvidarse is to use it with some form of "Se.." ie. "Se le olvidó su mochila.", "¿Se te olvidaron los libros?" and so on and so forth.

I was taught in college to use Olvidarse de, "Me olvidé de poner la mesa." or "¿Te olvidaste de los papeles?", but people around here tell me not to use it that way. I would mention that all of the people I am referring to are Native Spanish Speakers, but have had little to no education in an exclusively Spanish educational setting such as a university in Mexico, Spain or South America.

Now, I believe that much of what I am being told is not incorrect, but I fear it may be non-standard constructions of Spanish. I want to know what are the most traditionally accepted uses of Olvidar? I would also like to avoid a discussion of finite grammatical distinctions like transitive and intransitive, I just want sentences/examples and explanations of correct usage especially any I have not mentioned here. Also I would love to see uses in additional verb tenses, not just in the preterite, if possible. Any clarification on this would be greatly appreciated.
 
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  • micafe

    Senior Member
    Spanish - Colombia
    Hi Francisco, welcome to the forum.. :)

    What you are asking is the different ways to say "I forgot" in Spanish, is that right? You must know that your question refers to just one of the many conjugations of "olvidar":First person singular preterite of indicative.

    There are several ways to say it, "se me olvidó" is just one of them.

    When you use "se" in your sentence, there has to be verb-noun agreement. If the noun is singular, the verb is conjugated in the third person singular. If the noun is plural, the verb must be conjugated in the third person plural.

    You say "se me olvidó el libro" (singular noun, singular conjugation) but you must say "se me olvidaron las llaves". (Plural noun, plural conjugation)

    You don't need to always use "se"; you can simply say "olvidé el libro", "olvidé las llaves".
    When the thing that's forgotten is not a noun but a verb (I'll use your example):

    "Olvidé poner la mesa" = "me olvidé de poner la mesa" = "se me olvidó poner la mesa". All these sentences mean exactly the same.

    I imagine you know that if you change subject the conjugation of the verb has to change too. Right?

    I'll give you one example and you can figure out the rest.. Ok?

    If the subject is "tú" as in "you forgot", then the verb conjugation changes to "olvidaste". The pronouns change also:

    "se te olvidó el libro", "se te olvidaron las llaves".

    "olvidaste el libro", "olvidaste las llaves".

    "Olvidaste poner la mesa" = "te olvidaste de poner la mesa" = "se te olvidó poner la mesa".

    You must do the changes using all the other subject pronouns... That's your homework for today.. :p

    I hope I helped.. :)
     

    Perrito

    Senior Member
    Estats Units, anglès
    Olvidar without the se (non-proniminal) and olvidarse are both correct. :) So, don't worry about it.

    Or, do worry about it and keep reading here, ha ha:
    The most important thing to know is that you're right, you have the right idea. They're the same. Now, it may be that these people are unfamiliar in their particular dialect with these usages, but it's standard and correct Spanish, and if you were to go to another country or area, there wouldn't be any problem at all with it.

    Ex: A) Me olvidé de las llaves (tenía que ir a la casa de la tía a recogerlas). B) Olvidé las llaves. They're exactly the same for what we're talking about. Be careful with the olvidarse you need the preposition: "de."

    The only time you don't need the "de" with olvidarse is if you forgot them in a certain location. C) Me olvidé las llaves (en el escritorio). So, the difference between A and C is that in A he forgot the general idea of the keys and C he forgot them in a place. :)idea:Let's hope a native con confirm this, but I must confess I wasn't completely sure, because they're so similar and they're all right (olvidar, olvidarse, etc.) that I had to confirm it in the DRAE entry. :idea:)

    Se me olvidaron las llaves is also fine. It almost to take guilt away from you. The keys "got forgotten" by you, whoops! Almost like they had the responsibility to remind you, and they forgot to remind you. Ha ha! It's very common in colloquial Spanish and is completely correct, as are the other two examples above.

    Hope this helps,
    Greg
     
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    Francisco1982

    Member
    English - American
    To micafe and Perrito, Awesome! That does break it down for me, thanks. I guess I just need to learn all the ways "to forget" something.
     
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    juan2937

    Banned
    Spanish
    So, I have looked at and read about a dozen forums and even blogs concerning Olvidar and its various forms, but I still cannot find the answer to my specific question.
    Are there other forms to the phrase "Se me olvidó." and can it be used as a sentence like "Se me olvidó las llaves."?, I ask because here in southern Texas I have been told by a great many that the ONLY way to use Olvidar or Olvidarse is to use it with some form of "Se.." ie. "Se le olvidó su mochila.", "¿Se te olvidaron los libros?" and so on and so forth.
    las tres formas son correctas pero gramaticalmente distintas :
    1.- Olvidar = verbo transitivo
    Olvidé las llaves (DO) en el carro/en la casa.
    2.- Pronominal olvidarse de ( forma Intransitiva) con la preposición 'de' que indica un complemento preposicional 'de las llaves'
    me olvidé de las llaves.
    3.- También se usa la construcción pronominal 'olvidársele' construcción pronominal, intransitiva olvidársele algo a alguien en la cual el sujeto es la cosa o persona olvidada y la persona que olvida se determina mediante un complemento indirecto Se le (a él) olvidó cerrar la puerta (subject), se les (a ellos) olvidó cerrar la ventana, se le olvidaron ( a mi padre) sus otros hijos, ya se te(IO) (a tí) olvidó que eres mi invitado (subject). No puedes usar la preposición 'de' antes del sujeto (dequeísmo). se te olvida de que estamos ayunando. ( dequeísmo).
    También podría usarse aquí = Se me (IO) olvidó las llaves (subject).

    I was taught in college to use Olvidarse de, "Me olvidé de poner la mesa." or "¿Te olvidaste de los papeles?", but people around here tell me not to use it that way. I would mention that all of the people I am referring to are Native Spanish Speakers, but have had little to no education in an exclusively Spanish educational setting such as a university in Mexico, Spain or South America.

    Now, I believe that much of what I am being told is not incorrect, but I fear it may be non-standard constructions of Spanish. I want to know what are the most traditionally accepted uses of Olvidar? I would also like to avoid a discussion of finite grammatical distinctions like transitive and intransitive, I just want sentences/examples and explanations of correct usage especially any I have not mentioned here. Also I would love to see uses in additional verb tenses, not just in the preterite, if possible. Any clarification on this would be greatly appreciated.
     

    Francisco1982

    Member
    English - American
    Juan2937: Muchísimas gracias por la ayuda. Eso me explica mucho. Me interesa mucho este “dequeísmo”. Me encontré que había mucha gente por estas partes que se usa “de” después de un verbo cuando no se requería. Pensaba que había alguna regla que no conocía o quizás era optativa. Nunca sabía que era una equivocación. Gracias.
     
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