posted by Corinne .
I don't understand why some verbes pronominaux use s'y instead of se. What is the function of the y? And how does it change the meaning?
It's always best to give a complete of what you see, or have seen. "y" is the pronoun referring to things or places. It generally replaces "à + noun" but may also replace other prepositions of position, such as "chez, dans, en, sous, or sur + noun."
In English "y" most commonly means "to it (them), in it (them), on it (them), and there (when the place has already been mentioned). Sometimes the equivalent is not even expressed in English.
Another pronoun usually studied with "y" is "en" but I don't know if you have done that.
The "e" in a verbe pronominal (me, te, se) drops the "e" when "y" or "en" is added.
Hopefully, this is what you need. Feel free to ask again with examples, if it is not.
Sra (aka Mme)