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Pasado continuo en Español

Buenas noches,
alguien me puede explicar, cuándo se usa que forma del verbo "estar" en el pasado continuo (se llama así?)? Me cunfunde cuando es imperfecto ("estaba") o indefinido ("estuve"). Yo siempre uso la primera forma, pero he escuchado ambas.
Gracias y saludos!

For learning: Spanish
Base language: Spanish
Category: Language

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    * I'm writing in English so that you find easier to understand. If you prefer me to write in Spanish, please let me know.

    Hello, MariDieMissy, nice to meet you!

    The difference is easy to understand.

    When you use "I was walking" you're telling an action that happened in the past but at that time was not yet finished. That was happening.

    But when you use "I was walking", you are telling something that happened in the past and already concluded. That already happened.

    In English is used the same tense for these two Spanish verb tenses, but in Spanish there is that subtle difference.

    I sincerely hope this helps.

    Best wishes.

     

    estaba caminando por la calle, cuando ví a mi hermano

    ¿Cómo estaba la comida? estaba buenísima

    estuve allí a las cinco

    estuve en Roma del año 2002 a 2005

     

    You already know the two forms, so I am assuming you want more information as to what is the difference between them.

    It is very simple. Spanish verbs have a perfective and an imperfective form in past. This means that the action was being performed (imperfective) or it had been finished (perfective).

    Yo estaba cantando cuando tú llegaste
    (I was singing when you arrived)
    This is called crossed actions, one is being performed (imperfective) when the other action took place (perfective)

    Ella y yo estábamos hablando en el parque y veíamos a la gente pasar
    (She and I were talking in the park and we saw people pass by)
    This is called simultaneous actions, both must be in imperfective.

    Estuve cinco minutos en la calle y luego entré
    (I was on the street 5 minutes and then I came in)
    In this case both actions are complete and they are consecutive not simultaneous, in this case both verbs will always be in perfective)

    I hope this helps.

    Aqui no existe el pasado o presente continuo, solo es el verbo estar con el verbo siguiente en gerundio (terminación en ando - iendo)
    Con respecto a "estaba corriendo" tiene una acercación más al presente que "estuve corriendo".
    Espero que te sirva mi explicación

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