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"casi me desmayo!" - present tense?

LuciaA2Kwiziq community member

"casi me desmayo!" - present tense?

Why is this part in present tense! Doesn't it refer to the concert - which took place yesterday? Is it used to make this part more lively, more immediate?But somehow it is strange for me to "jump"  into the present tense!

Looking forward to an explanation!

Saludos!

Lucia

Asked 3 weeks ago
SilviaKwiziq team memberCorrect answer

Hola Lucia

You've made a keen observation about the use of present tense in the phrase "¡casi me desmayo!" despite referring to a past event.

This is actually a common stylistic technique in Spanish known as the 'historical present' or "presente histórico". It's used to narrate past events with a sense of immediacy and vividness, making the story come alive as if it's happening right now. This technique can make the narration more engaging and dynamic, especially in spoken language or informal writing.

By saying "¡casi me desmayo!" instead of using a past tense, the speaker brings the emotional impact of that moment into the present, helping the listener or reader experience the intensity of the emotions as if they are part of the unfolding scene.

This approach is not uncommon in storytelling and can be a creative way to capture the listener's attention. However, it's important to use it judiciously to avoid confusion, especially in more formal or academic contexts where sticking to the correct temporal perspective is crucial.

I hope this clarifies your query! If you're looking to deepen your understanding of tenses and their stylistic uses in Spanish, you might find our resources on verbal tenses helpful. Feel free to explore more about this topic and others to enhance your language skills.

Buen finde

Silvia

 
 
 
 
ClaraC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

Hola Lucia, 

Following on from Silvia's excellent explanation, we use the 'historical present' in English also. 

I thought this might help to emphasise it's use: 

"When I think about my earliest childhood memory...

I'm 3 years old. I'm standing at the top of a street with my mother. It's a sunny day. Mum is holding my hand tightly. We walk down the street to our new house. I look up at mum and I smile with excitement..."

InmaKwiziq team member

Hola Lucía 

We've got a lesson about casi using the present. Have a look and find some other examples. 

Saludos

Inma

"casi me desmayo!" - present tense?

Why is this part in present tense! Doesn't it refer to the concert - which took place yesterday? Is it used to make this part more lively, more immediate?But somehow it is strange for me to "jump"  into the present tense!

Looking forward to an explanation!

Saludos!

Lucia

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