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Table of contents Chapter 8 8.18 Gerundio in shortened subordinate clauses

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Chapter 8: Ser and Estar; Gerund and Passive voice

  8.18 Gerundio in shortened subordinate clauses
In English we often use the gerund to shorten the subordinate clause of a sentence. Exactly the same can be done in Spanish.

Teniendo dinero, la vida es más fácil Having money live is easier.
  Viviendo en el campo, no se tiene la posibilidad de ir al cine   Living in the countryside there is no possibility to go to the movies.
  Aun teniendo más dinero, no me compraría un nuevo coche   Even having more money I wouldn't buy a new care
  Levantándonos temprano, vamos a alcanzar el tren   Getting up early we are going to reach the train.

There are different options of using gerunds for shortening sentences:

  Causal clauses    
Long:
Como no tenía ganas de hacerlo, no lo hizo.

Because he did not feel like it, he did not do it.
  With gerund:
No teniendo ganas de hacerlo, no lo hizo.
 
Not feeling like it, he did not do it.

  Adversative clauses    
Long:
Aunque es rico, no es feliz.

Even though he is rich, he is not happy.
  With gerund:
Siendo rico, no es feliz.
 
Being rich, he is not happy.

  Temporal clauses    
Long:
Mientras hablaba la miraba.

While he was talking, he was looking at her.
  With gerund:
Hablando con ella la miraba.
 
While talking he was looking at her.

  Conditional clauses    
Long:
Si tuviera dinero, se compraría un coche.

If he had money, he would buy a car.
  With gerund:
Teniendo dinero, se compraría un coche.
 
Having money he would buy a car.

Relative clauses are another story, here gerunds cannot be used, because in Spanish we need to have gender and number matching. The gerund cannot do this.

  Relative clauses    
correct: el hombre wue rie cuza la calle. The man, who laughs, crosses the street.
  With gerund - wrong:
(El hombre riendo cruza la calle.)
   

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