thou, you, you guys and all that stuff

From: Che
Message: 8893
Date: 2001-08-31

It seems to be quite a usual feature, doesn't it?
Tu (2nd sing) -> tu cantas
Usted (3rd sing) -> usted canta (note that the true meaning is "your grace", it is, an "it" 3rd person)
Vos (2nd plural) -> vos cantáis
Vosotros (2nd plural) -> vosotros cantáis
Ustedes (3rd plural) -> ustedes cantan (note the same but in plural, "they")
(there's no a pronominal form for the plural of vos)
In peninsular spanish, the "voseo" feature is no longer existing, having been substituted by the "usted" use.
Note that verbal conjugation always is concordant to the pronoun and refers to an "direct interlocutor" dispite of it's gramatical form (as in portuguese, catalan, french...)
Note as well that "usted/-es" is a modern invention, not much older than 150 years, so the traditional polite form is "vos", for both singular and plural, a confusing use that has recently driven the americans to a plenty of mixed solutions: "vos" sing. "ustedes" plural; "usted" sing "ustedes" plural; "vos"/"vosotros", etc. It's quite a complicated question, as there are different solutions depending on what country are we talking about as well as on the context.
----- Original Message -----
From: João S. Lopes Filho
Sent: Friday, August 31, 2001 3:59 PM
Subject: Re: [tied] -lh- / you

In Portuguese there's a exact equivalent for Spanish "usted"

vossa merce^ > vosmece^ > voce^ (coloquially in many parts of Brazil >oce^ >
ce^ )

In Brazilian Portuguese vos (2nd plural) is already obsolete, substituted by
voce^s. The 2nd singular, tu, was virtually substituted by voce^. But the
use of "tu" is kept in Southernmost Brazil, a feature of the so called
"gaucho" accent.

Joao S Lopes

----- Original Message -----
From: <tgpedersen@...>
To: <>
Sent: Friday, August 31, 2001 8:54 AM
Subject: Re: [tied] -lh-

> --- In cybalist@..., "Che DeBarna" <almogaver69@...> wrote:
> > I was sure it had to happen somewhere in Brazil! Thanks for the
> info.
> Then... mmm... I've got my own theory about Latin American Spanish,
> which I believe to reflect a different thing that an "andalusian"
> dialect. How much has Andalusia been Castillian before the (re)
> discovery of America? Is this period long enough for "andalusian" to
> become so different to "regular" Castillian? I don't think so... I'd
> rather think seriously about basque influence (no, it's not that I'm
> obsessed about basque, it's just that in my opinion it has always
> been unfairly ignored). Just notice that the most of
> the "conquistadores" where either directly basque-born or sons of
> those basques (more specifically: bizkaians) who migrated towards the
> south (that includes Extremadura) searching for a job in what was
> their specialty: the sea. Standing there as an evidence is the fact
> that the most common family name in the whole Spain is "García", but
> not the original Bizkaian one, but the southern! In my opinion,
> basque sailors and "conquistadores" are responsible for the special
> american "s", identical to basque "z" and of the famous
> american "voseo", it is, the substitution of the second person
> singular pronoun "tu" by "vos", which is gramatically equivalent to
> the 2nd plural "vosotros" (like English thou>you). It is something
> that happened by the same time in basque "hi" ("thou") is replaced
> by "zu" ("you"). The difference with English is that this kept "you"
> for both sing. and plural, while basque created a regular plural
> for "zu">"zuek" and american spanish used its original "vosotros".
> Dutch has, as far as I can see, calqued Spanish: 2nd pl. <je> "ye" >
> 2nd sg; new 2nd pl. <je lie> ("you folks")> <jullie>; even <Uwe
> genade> "your Grace" > <U> cf. Spanish <vuestra merced> > <Usted>.
> You might argue that English has the same construction <you guys> for
> 2nd pl.
> At least that puts it in the same time frame.
> Torsten
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