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My question is only about Portuguese of Portugal.

I've done a search but barely found anything. What's the more correct, or more common, form among these:

  • ele me tem pagado
  • ele tem-me pagado
  • ele tem pagado-me

The question isn't about "pagou"-form, but "pagado".

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    Comments are not for extended discussion; this conversation has been moved to chat.
    – stafusa
    Commented Aug 8, 2022 at 15:23

2 Answers 2

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The second form is the one used and correct for European Portuguese, with a small change:

Ele tem-me pago.

The form "pagado" has fallen in disuse in Portugal, see Artefacto's good answer in a question about "pago vs pagado", complemented with Centaurus' answer for a solid understanding.


The first form, "ele me tem pagado", is Brasilian Portuguese - it uses próclise (me tem) where European Portuguese would use ênclise (tem-me).

The third form is incorrect, it's agrammatical.
I'm not 100% sure of this, but I think that the pronoun must always go with the auxiliary verb.
In this third form, it is wrongly with the main verb (pagado-*me).

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    @Schilive great suggestion, thanks!
    – ANeves
    Commented Aug 9, 2022 at 15:40
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In Portugal and in Brazil, the past participle should not have enclisis; in Portugal, it should neither have proclisis; then, the participle has no clitic pronoun. Basically, sentences as “Ele tem me visto” and “Tem pagado-me” are wrong.

But something can both be wrong and be used — figures of speech are actually intentional grammatical errors. In the Corpus do Português, there are three corpora. Searching on the three by an example of a regular participle with an eclitic pronoun (e.g., eu tenho pagado-te), I found only a few examples. Most examples could be only an error, since the past participle and the gerund have a lot in common in Portuguese, and their writings are similar enough; for example, here, with perhaps tornado-se instead of tornando-se.

But some even fewer examples were probably not a mistake, as on here. These websites also had a more colloquial language.

Therefore, the forms «tem-me pagado» and «ele não me tem pagado» seem to be the most common. The rest, that is «tem me pagado»/«tem me-pagado» and «tem pagado-me», seem to be exceptional.

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  • Alright, an answer. But you've done is some research and then have given me your conclusion based on it, as for what seems correct and incorrect to you. Right? How it really is, on practise you don't know, do you?
    – Kum
    Commented Aug 8, 2022 at 12:27
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    The form "me tem pagado" does not sound correct in the context of the question. "Ele me tem pagado" is incorrect for pt-PT. Can you include a complete example sentence for "me tem pagado" with your question? :)
    – ANeves
    Commented Aug 8, 2022 at 22:07
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    Perfect, thanks. :)
    – ANeves
    Commented Aug 9, 2022 at 15:41
  • IIUC, even in Brazil proclisis to a participle requires another verb. So you can say ele não tem me pagado as contas, but not uma vez me pagadas/pagas as contas, fiquei contente.
    – Artefacto
    Commented Aug 10, 2022 at 15:19
  • @Artefacto, I personally think «uma vez pagas as contas, fiquei contente» is fine. It sound normal to me. But I think it is non-standard.
    – Schilive
    Commented Aug 10, 2022 at 22:16

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