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Translating is Easy If… The Gerund in ES (II)

Translating is easy if… A series of articles I started to illustrate why “the rendition of a text into another language can be pretty easy, yet of poor quality. And that being the case, there will be fewer, if not zero, chances that the translated text will fulfil its intended communicative effects.” As part of this series, here comes The Gerund, part II.

I’ve heard (and I agree) that, in Spanish, the gerund is one of the scariest impersonal forms of the verb. Its translation from EN to ES can be a tricky business, at least in some of its occurrences, and especially, when it comes to the rendition of “including” (preposition) into Spanish. On my previous related post, I dealt with correct vs incorrect uses of the gerund. This time, my small contribution goes to further clarify how “including” can be translated into Spanish.

Simple introduction

Exceptuando, incluyendoquitando are gerunds that have their perfect equivalents in adverbial and prepositional elements, like excepto and incluso. The former are lexicalised gerunds; i.e., they have adopted a different grammatical category, in this case, that of adverbs.

So, when is it OK to use incluyendo?

According to the dictionary, incluir means 1) “to put something inside something else or within its boundaries;” or when talking about things, 2) “have something else inside.”

1. Therefore, incluyendo can be used to mean “putting something or someone in a group.” For example, “Estudié todo el manual, incluyendo la sección de arquitectura.” I’m sure some of my university classmates have some good memories associated with this sentence. 😉 “Billy consiguió un baúl y metió en él al muerto, incluyendo sus amuletos de viaje.” 

2. Also, use incluyendo with the meaning of “a thing having something else inside.” In this case, it’s the same as and could be replaced by incluso. For example, “Envió solicitud de amistad a todos, incluyendo/incluso a los contactos que no soportaba.” “Tuvieron que vender absolutamente todo, incluyendo/incluso lo que tenían puesto.” “Examinaron el hospital, incluyendo/incluso la oficina del director.

But! Sometimes, Including Should  NOT Be Incluyendo

In cases where incluyendo can be replaced by del que forma parte,” “entre ellos/ellas,” “constituido por,” “como XX,” etc., we should avoid the literal translation of “including” as incluyendo. Instead, it’s more appropriate to use any of the options I’ve just mentioned. For instance:

“Amparado en esa filosofía y en pos de una desintoxicación amateur (cero alcohol, cero comida empaquetada, etc.), me aboqué durante dos días a ingerir un colorido repertorio de jugos que prepara el cocinero crudívoro Diego Castro, incluyendo, como la leche de almendras, las pócimas violetas y los brebajes inmunológicos. (La Nación)

Thanks for being here! I hope you find this post useful. Comments? Something to add? They’ll be more than welcome, and helpful, I’m sure. 🙂

Useful links:

Incluir / Incluso / Incluido / Incluyendo


References and credits:

Real Academia Española. “Re: Consulta RAE (gramatical | formas no personales | gerundio: incluyendo).” Message to the author. 25 Aug. 2014. E-mail.

“Including.” Oxford Dictionaries. Web. Jan. 2015.

“Inclir.” Diccionario de la lengua española, 23rd ed. Web. Jan. 2015.

“Incluso.” Diccionario de la lengua española, 23rd ed. Web. Jan. 2015.

Published by Victoria Principi

Victoria Principi
Victoria Principi is a National Public Translator of English who graduated from the National University of Córdoba in Argentina. She translates, localises and reviews texts between English and Spanish, specialising in marketing and business, information and communications technology, and social sciences and humanities. She is a member of IAPTI and has been working as an independent translator since 2012. Currently, she is based in Lucca, Italy, and helps translation agencies and end clients who need to reach a Spanish-speaking audience. She is the creator of this website and the author of the blog.

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