Tener in the Preterite

Discussion in 'Spanish-English Grammar / Gramática Español-Inglés' started by GB2004, Oct 30, 2006.

  1. GB2004 Member

    USA- English
    Various publications say it means "recieved". I have noticed that in general conversation that tenía is used a lot more often than tuve or tuvo.

    But is it really a synonym for conseguir and recibir?

    The preterite indicates started and completed action...but using Tener this way doesn't seem to indicate that...
  2. kevcito Senior Member

    Yikes! Wait....yiiikkkkeeessss! :eek:

    GB2004--we need some examples/context/background. :cool:

    Tadeo--good intentions,;) but talk about massive information overload (and consequently, low relevancy... :(). It's like going to google and typing in a word: kabam! 5 "kazillion" results. haha! :D
  3. San Senior Member

    No, it is not. Tener usually means that you have something, without saying anything of the way you became the owner. Anyway, sometimes the relation is very close:

    Tengo carta = he recibido una carta.
    Tengo permiso = me han dado permiso.
    Tengo un coche nuevo = He conseguido un nuevo coche.

    You can see that it does not depend on the tense, these phases are in present. In the last sentence, there are likely hundred of regionalisms and slang to mean "conseguir": agenciarse, averiguarse, hacerse con, hacerse de, etc.
  4. geostan

    geostan Senior Member

    English Canada
    Tuve una carta = recibí una carta.

    Yes, it can mean "received" And according to the Diccionario de uso del español, this meaning is not restricted to the preterite. It gives the example: Tendrá una sorpresa. (He will get a surprise. [my translation]).

  5. GB2004 Member

    USA- English
    Great. Does it ever mean anything else?

  6. mhp Senior Member

    American English
    There is no difference in the meaning of tenía and tuve aside from the general difference between imperfect and the indefinite. Whatever meaning tener has in the present tense, it also has in the past tense.

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