"Si cette guitare n'était pas si chère, je pourrais l'acheter."

Translation:If that guitar was not that expensive, I could buy it.

January 2, 2013

22 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/ericdavis

the proper English here would be: If that guitar WERE not that expensive.........the subjunctive in English is required after if and wish

July 25, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/milesnagopaleen

I think that, were you to open a modern descriptive, as opposed to prescriptive grammar of the English language, you would find that the preterite form "was" is now common usage. For example In "A Student's Guide to English Grammar" by Huddleston and Pullum describes this use of "were" as "an untidy relic of an earlier system".

May 15, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/jack.erz

For some reason, almost everyone on Duolingo is a huge prescriptivist :(

August 27, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/Unreadable

What if it's just a conditional? I.e. we're considering two possiblities: the guitar actually was expensive or actually wasn't, and concluding that it's the latter: the guitar really was not that expensive (as opposed to us only wishing for that). And in that case, yeah, I could buy it (where "could" just expresses less certainty that I'll follow through on my plan to buy it).

September 10, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/Elizabeth870279

Thank you! Makes me cringe to read it. It is soooo incorrect.

May 5, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/iLawrence

Surely 'dear' is the same as expensive. It's certainly the word I would rather use.

January 2, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf

In that case, I am not sure you would be understood. "dear" is "chère" when it comes to sentiments: "dear friends" = "chères amies"

January 2, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/ronjudd

don't be silly now, look at the context.

April 17, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/Alice_M_G

In UK English 'dear' is used to mean expensive

June 11, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/henrydwatson

'Dear' in English means 'valuable'/'expensive' that's why we use 'my dearest friends' and 'that necklace is dear'. It's actually FROM French that we do this as 'cher' is used for the same things.

July 29, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/LeandroNun13

In Brazil " meu caro amigo" = my dear friend" and "carro caro"= expensive car".

June 20, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/jellyroll47

Dear = expensive in UK English

April 1, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/pbviolette

Agree with ericdavis. Subjunctive rare in English, but it is required here.

March 9, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/milesnagopaleen

The correct English (at least British English) is "If that guitar was not SO expensive, I could buy it."

May 15, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/landmannnn

Are you sure?

May 16, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/milesnagopaleen

Fairly sure but not 100% to be honest. (1) "The guitar was not that expensive" is fine but "If the guitar was not that expensive.." seems dubious to me.
When in doubt, I tend to try a few different sentences with the same syntactic structures. (2) The sentence was that difficult I couldn't translate it - dubious (3)The sentence was that difficult that I couldn't translate it - even more dubious (4) The sentence was so difficult I couldn't translate it- fine (5) The sentence was so difficult that I couldn't translate it- fine (6) If the sentence was not that difficult I could translate it - dubious (7) If the sentence was not so difficult I could translate it - fine I checked in the "Longman Grammar of Written and Spoken English" ( a corpus-based grammar) and although it does say that "that" can be used as a degree adverb (as in (1)), I could find no reference to it being used as such in sentences like (2), (3) or (6).

May 17, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/landmannnn

To me there is a subtle difference between "not so expensive" and "not that expensive". Not enough to keep me awake at night though. Enought of that, off to learn some more french!

May 17, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/milesnagopaleen

Well, that's cleared that up then :)

May 17, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/bgeiler

This seems the most natural way to put it to me, and I'm an American...

June 13, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/pbviolette

If that (or this) guitar weren’t so expensive, I could buy it.

June 13, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/juanbflores

Should be "If that guitar was not so expensive, I could buy it".

October 19, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/AnnaTall

even better (accepted) If that guitar weren't that expensive...

October 12, 2013
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