Lezioni spagnolo


Requerir, Carecer: Meaning needed, meaning lacking

Desde que el hombre apareció como tal sobre la faz de la Tierra... ha requerido, y por cierto, aún requiere, de diversas fuentes de energía que le sirvan de combustible.

[Captions 1/4-5 , Cocinas Peruanas > cortometraje]


We begin this cortometraje ("short film") about the dangers of unventilated cooking in Peru with the basic needs of man. "Since man appeared as he is on the face of the Earth, he has required, and by the way still requires, diverse sources of energy to serve as fuel."

Above, the verb requerir ("to require" or "to need") is followed by the preposition de. This is common only in Latin America, notes HarperCollins' Spanish Unabridged Dictionary. Meanwhile, the Spanish spoken in Spain for the most part uses requerir as a transitive verb followed by a direct object, meaning no preposition is requerido ("required"). For example, in Spain you'd likely hear:

Esto requiere cierto cuidado

"This requires some care"

A little later in the short film, we encounter a verb that's always followed by de and then an indirect object:

sus viviendas... que en su mayoría, carecen de ventilación

[Captions 12-13 , Cocinas Peruanas > cortometraje]

Carecer [de algo] means "to lack [something]." Above, the narrator is speaking of "their homes... that for the majority, lack ventilation." The use of the preposition de is required here, regardless of which continent the speaker is standing on. If it were missing, you would have to say the sentence lacks something (la frase carece de algo).


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