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Linguaholic

Subjunctive or indicative?


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Hello,

Sorry if this question sounds stupid, but I'm fairly new to the language. I'm trying to say something like this

"I think it is ridiculous that cats are more popular than dogs".

As far as I'm concerned I think "creer que" uses indicative but "es ridiculo que" uses subjunctive... So the question is because it's "creer que" I should use the indicative, or should it be subjunctive as it is my own subjective opinion?

Thanks

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Hmm... that's an interesting question. I may be wrong but here is what I think:

"Creo que es ridículo que los gatos sean más populares que los perros".

To say the same in a different way, but to use infinitive you'd need a trick,

"Creo que es ridículo pensar que los gatos son más populares que los perros".

I think these are ok, but hopefully someone else can confirm it too.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I second those translations! I would actually prefer to use the second one (substituting 'pensar' for the second 'que'), because I think it flows more naturally. It's also a fun way to play with the difference between the verb 'creer' and 'pensar,' which are often confused with one another.

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  • 2 months later...

      You should use the subjunctive because it is own subjective opinion and bacause the verb "creer" requires almost always use subjuntive after it. Subjuntive express uncertainty, unreality invalidity. Just because "creer" is one verb that expresses subjectivity requires the following verb to be in subjuntive.

 

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  • 1 month later...
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I think Paolo is correct with "Creo que es ridículo que los gatos sean más populares que los perros."

You are correct that "creer que" does take the indicative, and that's why it is "Creo que es ridículo..." and not "Creo que sea ridículo..." Then of course, "es rídculo que" takes the subjunctive with "es ridículo que los gatos sean...".

"Creer que" has a subordinate verb in the indicative ("es") and "es ridículo que" has a subordinate verb in the subjunctive ("sea").

This wasn't a stupid question at all--it was very perceptive.  :)

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