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Flashcards in Se Deck (18):

With an accent , SÉ means “I know”
First person singular of Saber

Completely different from reflexive pronoun SE (no accent).


Indirect Object Pronoun

Reflexive Pronoun

Tells : to where an action goes
to or for whom an action goes

Reflexive Pronoun is a specialized indirect object pronoun, with the action always going back to the subject.


He / she washes his / her hair (but NOT their own)
You (formal) wash his her hair (but NOT their own)

Le lava el pelo.

He / she washes for him / her (but not their own) hair everyday.


He / She / You (formal) wash(es) his / hers / your OWN hair.

Se lava el pelo.


Two different people involved in the washing of hair. (She washes his hair)

Only one person is involved, so he / she / are washing their own hair... the action is being done to the subject.

Le lava el pelo.

Se lava el pelo.


Se is both singular and plural.
The verb determines which is used.

They wash their hair. (each is washing their own hair)

Se lavan el pelo.


Many times when the reflexive is used it is translated best by using the gerund “ing” in English.

He is washing his hair.

He is weighing himself.

He is showering or taking a shower.

Se lava el pelo.

Se pesa.

Se ducha.



Order of Object Pronouns is always Reflexive, Indirect, Direct

Since Reflexive Pronouns are an Indirect Pronoun, you would NEVER have both together.

Direct Object Pronouns are always LAST

Reflexive and Indirect are always FIRST.


He washes his hair every day.

He washes it (his hair) every day.

Se lava el pelo cada día.

Se lo lava cada día.


LA LA Rule

He washes her hair every day.

He washes it every day.

An Indirect Object starting with the letter “L” when preceding a Direct Object starting also with the letter “L”, changes to “SE”. In this case only,“Se” is not Reflexive.

Le lava el pelo cada día.

Se lo lava cada día. NOT “Le lo lava ...”


There can be much ambiguity because of the LA LA Rule.

“Se lo lava cada día”, can have many meanings.

He / she washes it himself / herself
You wash it yourself.
These are all Reflexive uses of “Se”.
Following the LA LA Rule it can also mean:

He / she washes it for him / her (not them self)
You (formal) wash it for him / her.


When will they be able to make bets?

Cuándo se podrán hacer apuestas?

When will they be able to make bets (for themselves)?


She ate the whole cake.

He eats (by or for himself)

Ella se comió el pastel entero. Note if she ate a hamburger be herself it would be:
Ella se comió la hamburguesa entera (feminine adjective ).

She ate (by herself) the whole cake.

Se come


To spend

To spend on / for ....myself, yourself, his / her self, ones self, theirselves

He spends on or for himself.



Se gasta


How much does each Spaniard spend in bars and restaurants?

Cuánto se gasta cada español en bares y restaurantes?


I bought it for him

Se lo compré.


I asked it to him.

Se lo pregunté.


I said it to him.

Se lo dije.