Temporary Nexus: Definition and Examples

The Temporary links Are connectors that allow to join subordinate clauses giving them meaning to be related. In using temporal nexus we are joining major clauses to subordinate clauses over time.

The links are words or morphemes whose function is to join words or sentences. They are called exocentric constructs to the syntactic constructions that are united by a nexus. Temporal links are very typical in literature

There are two types of nexus, the coordinating nexus and the subordinating nexus. Coordinating links are those that join words or sentences of the same category. There are four types of coordinating nexuses: copulative, disjunctive, adversative and illusory.

The subordinating nexus are those that subordinate a proposition not important to the main proposition. There are three types of subordination: substantive subordination, adjective subordination, and adverbial subordination.

The nexuses of substantive subordination are those that use conjunctions that, the, that, the fact that, if; Interrogative pronouns what, what, how, when... for example"the fact that you smoke is bad"

Adjective subordination nexuses use relative pronouns, such as"the tobacco you gave me, it's very bad"

Adverbial subordination nexuses use adverbs to establish the order of subordination.

We can distinguish between temporal, local, modal and comparative, within circumstantial subordination, and causal and consecutive in logical subordination.

Characteristics of temporary links

Temporary links are used to connect subordinate clauses through adjectives, to locate and sort chronologically.

We can distinguish three kinds of temporal nexuses: those of anteriority, those of simultaneity and those of posteriority.

Those of precedence mark the chronological order of the previous events that we subordinate to the main sentence.

The simultaneity marks the time in which two simultaneous events occur. And those of posteriority mark the immediate succession of the prayer subordinated to the main prayer.

Within literary texts we can find a large number of elements that provide temporal information, but they are not always related to nexuses, but sometimes they fulfill a syntactic function as a circumstantial complement of time.

Temporary links are also used as structuring of information within a text. They can introduce an enumeration, indicate the last fact, discursive computers of the enumeration, etc.

Temporary Nexus: Definition and Examples Image via anep.edu.uy.

In the following table we can see all the temporary links that can be used in the Spanish lexicon.

Examples of temporary links

Within subordinate clauses:

1-My grandmother was asleep when my Uncle Juan arrived.

2-It started to rain when I got home.

3-Before we knew it, I had already left.

4-After the people left, he told me his secret.

5-As soon as you finish the task you can go to play.

6-He is always with me when I need him.

7-When I go, you come.

8-Let me know when you're ready.

9-I dyed my hair when I got a divorce.

10-I picked up the house when I arrived on a trip.

In literary texts it is necessary to distinguish those that are temporary nexuses of circumstantial complement of time:

Example 1

Word by word, absorbed by the sordid dilemma of the heroes, letting go to the images that were arranged and acquired color and movement, witnessed the last meeting in the mountain hut. First The woman entered, suspicious; now The lover arrived, his face hurt by the jab of a branch.

Extracted from the work of Cortázar, Continuity of Parks.

In this case, First and now are temporary nexus, however last is a circumstantial complement of time.


She jerked back and walked away, not looking back until she reached the crest of the last blade. So He turned his hat in his right hand. And that was what latest That the friends saw, when when lowering the hill the figure disappeared.

Extracted from the work of Stelardo, Don Julio .


Carlos Argentino pretended to be astonished at what he did not know about the installation of light (which he undoubtedly already knew) and told me with some severity:

-Mal of your degree you will have to recognize that this place is compared with the most coveted ones of Flowers.

He re-read me, after , Four or five pages of the poem. (...) He bitterly denounced the critics; then , More benign, equated those persons"who do not have precious metals nor steam presses, mills and sulfuric acids for the minting of treasures, but which may indicate to others the treasure site".

Extracted from the work of Borges, The Aleph .


When The cronopios travel, find the hotels full, the trains have already left, it rains cries, and the taxis do not want to take them or charge soaring prices.

The cronopios are not discouraged because they firmly believe that these things happen to all of them, and at bedtime they say to one another:"The beautiful city, the most beautiful city."

And they dream all night that there are big parties in the city and that they are invited. The next day They rise up very happy, and that is how the cronopios travel.

Extracted from the work of Cortázar, Travels .


  1. CHOMSKY, Noam; OTERO, Carlos P. Aspects of the theory of syntax. Aguilar, 1976.
  2. GILI GAYA, Samuel, et al. Superior course of Spanish syntax. 1970.
  3. BOSQUE, Ignacio; GUTIÉRREZ-REXACH, Javier.Foundations of formal syntax. Editions Akal, 2009.
  4. HERNÁNDEZ, Guillermo; YAGÜE, Lourdes; SÁNCHEZ, José Luis. Castilian language and literature. General Spanish Society of Bookshop, 1995.
  6. OSMA, Carmen Chirivella. Castilian language and literature.
  7. RAYA, UNA, et al. Castilian language and Literature. 2007.

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