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Quedar(se) / Verse + Participio

Instead of using the verb ser to form the passive, the construction quedar + participio is commonly used with a similar meaning. 

While ser focuses on the action performed by an unnamed agent, quedar focuses on the resulting state following an event –a distinction that English often fails to make. 

Quedar is often best translated as "ended up" or "was left".

La casa quedó destruida — The house was destroyed/left destroyed

El conductor quedó herido en el accidente — The driver was injured/ended up injured

El problema ha quedado resuelto — The problem has been solved

 

Comparación

Fue sorprendido por el atracador — He was surprised by the attacker [Focus on the action]

Quedó sorprendido por el atraco — He was surprised by the attack [Focus on the resulting state following a previous action]

 

La puerta fue cerrada — The door was closed [Someone closed it; focus on the action perfomed by an unnamed agent]

La puerta estaba cerrada — The door was closed [A state; not open]

La puerta quedó cerrada — The door was (left) closed [Focus on the resulting state following a previous action]

 

Quedar is commonly used with participles such as detenido, dicho, and prohibido, often instead of estar+participio, to express the action and resulting state of the action.

Queda usted detenido — You are under arrest [You are being arrested and will remain in that state]

¡Queda dicho! — We've/you've been warned! [It has been said, and the message remains valid]

Queda prohibido reproducir cualquier parte de esta obra — It is forbidden to reproduce any part of this work [From this moment on it is forbidden]

 

As discussed previously, quedar and quedarse are used like ponerse, volverse and hacerse to denote state changes.

Quedar (non-pronominal form) is used more in formal/written styles and in Latin America, and it tends to focus on the resulting state rather than the change viewed in its entirety. This difference may be explained by the so-called se aspectual - read more.

Después de aquel accidente, la puerta quedó cerrada —  After that accident, the door was (left) closed [Focus on the resulting state; suggests it remained closed for some time or forever]

→Al salir del trabajo la puerta se quedó cerrada — Upon leaving work the door was closed [Focus on the state change and the resulting state; viewed as an entire event; the door closed and was left that way]

 

La niña quedó atrapada en el pozo — The girl was/became stuck in the well [Focus on the resulting state]

→La niña se quedó atrapada en el pozo — The girl got stuck in the well [Focus on the state change and the resulting state; viewed as an entire event]

 

El empleado quedó sorprendido por la actitud de su jefe — The employee was surprised by his boss's attitude [Focus on the resulting state; more formal]

→El empleado se quedó sorprendido por la actitud de su jefe — The employee was surprised by his boss's attitude [Focus on the state change and the resulting state; viewed as an entire event: se sorprendió y estuvo sorprendido durante un tiempo]

 

¿Estás satisfecho? — Are you satisfied? [Focus on the person's state at that time]

→¿Has quedado satisfecho con la respuesta? Are you satisfied with the answer? [Focus on the resulting state following a previous event]

→¿Te has quedado satisfecho con la respuesta? — Are you satisfied with the answer? [Focus on the state change and resulting state; viewed as an entire event]

 

La casa quedó vacía  — The house was left empty [Resulting state; a partir de ese momento estuvo vacía durante x tiempo/para siempre)

→La casa se quedó vacía — The house emptied [Change of state; se vació y permaneció así]

 

Similarly, Spanish frequently uses verse+participio instead of the verb ser (or estar) when forming a passive-like structure.

Verse is particularly common with participles that denote resulting state changes (e.g. transformado, trastocado, ampliado, etc.), especially those where someone finds themselves benefiting or losing out from something (beneficiado, compensado, engañado, humillado, etc.). The use of verse denotes the manifestation or visible presence of said state.

The other main use of verse is with participles that denote obligation, influence, and states in which one is forced to act (obligado, tentado, forzado, etc. - similar to 'to find oneself' in English).1-2

Al poco tiempo nos rodearon los soldados enemigos [Focus on the action]

Al poco rato nos vimos rodeados de soldados enemigos We were soon surrounded by enemy troops [Focus on state change and resulting state]

 

Es una novela sobre un hombre que está envuelto en una trama peligrosa 

Es una novela sobre un hombre que se ve envuelto en una trama peligrosa — It's a novel about a man who is/finds himself caught up in a dangerous plot

 

Jackie se vio obligada a tomar medidas — Jackie was forced to take measures

Jackie, al morir su marido, se ve atrapada en un bucle de contradicciones — Jackie, upon the death of her husband, found herself trapped in a cycle of contradictions

 

En La Prensa

El vehículo se salió de la vía, dio varias vueltas de campana y el joven, único ocupante, quedó atrapado debajo del coche Cadena SER-Mar 7, 2017

Un bebé de un año de edad que se quedó atrapado en el interior de un automóvil con el motor encendido, fue rescatado por elementos de la ... El Diario de Juárez-8 nov. 2017

Cuando voy al Centro Médico quedo asustado de cuanta gente puede haber allí. La Voz de Asturias-Oct 9, 2016

"Otro que muerde el polvo en un carrera y que aseguraba que iba a menos de 50 Km/h y quedó aplastado contra un poste telefónico" Cuatro-Feb 16, 2017

Las Cofradías, los empresarios y el Ayuntamiento hemos hecho un esfuerzo tremendo que se ha visto compensado con el aumento del número de visitantes» La Opinión de Murcia-Apr 18, 2017

Se trata del tercer encuentro consecutivo en el que los carbayones se vieron obligados a retocar su defensa por lesión. La Nueva España-12 hours ago

 

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