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Edna's avatar

Can "que" ever translate to "it" or does "que" only translate to "that"?

Asked by Edna (86points) July 10th, 2021
9 responses
“Great Question” (1points)

As flutherother pointed out in the answer section of my previously posted question about the meaning of the word fuñenga, Google translate says “que fuñenga” means “let it go.” I copied and pasted “que fuñenga” in Google translate myself and flutherother was right. If Google translate is correct that “que fuñenga” means “let it go,” does “que” translate to “it” or does “que” only translate to “that”? If “que” only translates to “that,” should Google translate have translated “que fuñenga” as “let that go”? Note: “qué” (because of the accent on the e) means “what” and “que” (because there is no accent on the e) means “that” and according to, “it” and “that” are grammatically used interchangeably in English

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Zaku's avatar

Que can translate to “that,” “than,” “who”, “whom”, “which”, “what”, or “and” in English.

I don’t see a way to make que mean “it”.


I think the translation of “que fuñenga” to “let it go” is not a literal word for word translation, but a suggestion of an equivalent English expression.

The Cambridge dictionary has no idea what “fuñenga” means.

See also this:

Sounds like it is sort of like “how crappy” or something.

Yeahright's avatar

I don’t care what Google says, ¡qué fuñenga! cannot mean let it go. Google is good but not entirely exact.

As I said before in the other thread, it most likely means What a drag/crap!

When you start your analysis with a false assumption, the rest of your analysis will lead you to faulty associations and misleading conclusions.

Most of the time, translations cannot be literal, that means word by word because you will end up with something crazy. Good translation is about understanding the expression you want to translate and look for the equivalent in the other language that best fits, even if it doesn’t match word by word. What really matters is to convey the meaning so that it communicates the same meaning in both languages.

Yeahright's avatar

To address some of your questions:

1. It does not have a direct equivalent in Spanish all the time. If it is used as the subject of the sentence, it is not translated: it rains = llueve.
2. It translates as la or lo if it is used as the object of the sentence: I bought it = lo compré.
3. Yes, both it and that can most of the time be used interchangeably in English. (Which has nothing to do with your ¡qué fuñenga! expression.)
4. That in English can act as a connecting word (it’s a relative pronoun) The book that you read. or can act as it (object pronoun) I read it or I read that.
5. que without an accent can be translated as that or what (you are wrong when you say that que w/o an accent only translates as that because it translates to what as well).
6. que meaning that usually connects two structures (conjunction)—not the case here.
7. que without an accent can mean what as in what I like is pizza = lo que me gusta es la pizza
8. qué with an accent is a question word as in What do you like? = ¿Qué te gusta?
9. None of the above applies to your ¡qué fuñenga! expression which is called an interjection or exclamatory idiom/sentence (expressions of strong emotion that carry exclamation points).
10. There is a rule for exclamatory sentences that requires the use of qué with an accent, as in What a nice surprise! = ¡Qué linda sorpresa!
11. Therefore, to conclude, ¡qué fuñenga! falls in to point 10, and that is why it carries qué with an accent.

*Points 3 and 4 highlight the fact that the more you know the structure of your native language the better equipped you are to understand how other languages operate by comparison and contrast.

Edna's avatar

My Elementary School taught that at the beginning of the sentence you always capitalize the first letter of the first word of the sentence and you always end the sentence with a period. Next, when rock is singular you say “rock sits” and when rock is plural you say “rocks sit.” Next they taught contractions, what a verb is, what a noun is, and what an adjective is. Next they taught the differences among there, their, and they’re, the differences among too, to, and two, the differences between for and four, and the differences between were and we’re. Next they expose you to English vocabulary and they assign books to read. I don’t know when I learned when to use “difference between” versus “difference among”, I believe it was High School. Spanish was an eye opener when I first learned it because there was so much grammar structure, I realized my English teachers in Elementary School fail miserably in comparison to my Spanish instructors in High School. I remember looking up online when English grammar was no longer being taught in Elementary School, and it turns out the intensive English grammar curriculum stopped in the 1960s or 70s. I have so much to learn about English grammar too because you and my mom are right: I have nothing to compare Spanish grammar with.
@Yeahright Do you mind helping me with my English grammar questions whenever I have any? I don’t have any right now, but when I do, can you help?

Yeahright's avatar

@Edna Yes, absolutely.
I am here for the summer and will always answer your questions for English or Spanish until the end of July. I see you have all it takes to continue advancing in both languages. You pay attention to detail and you seem very methodical and keep track of all the materials/structures you have covered and that is great because in learning it is essential to have a studying system in place to be able to retain as much information as possible.

JLeslie's avatar

My English skills improved tremendously when I started studying Spanish in 7th grade. All of a sudden I became much more aware of all parts of a sentence.

Knowing more languages expands the mind in more ways than people anticipate including understanding culture and how language influences culture. I’m way off the point of the Q, but the answers above made me think of it. I just went to a philosophical discussion on that very topic. Very interesting.

Edna's avatar

@Yeahright Thank you so much

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