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Super_moi. Technically: yes.
Comment ça va? = how = you can use an adverb bien/mal.
ça va? = yes or no question.
But the usage can be different.
-Comment ça va?
-ça va! (I didn't use an adverb)
-Oui! Je vais bien! (I used an adverb)
And it's perfectly proper and common.
As a grammar connoisseur, I don't see them as completely interchangeable. Hear me out, though. When speaking informally to friends or adults you know well, you would say something like, "Hi! How's it going?" more often than a greeting like, "Hello, how are you?" in a conversation with a more respected elder.
They're basically the same, but you wouldn't walk into a dinner party and start off saying "Hi! How's it going?" to the first stranger you meet.
I say "how goes it" occasionally, but it's slang, as far as I know. I've never actually researched the phrase.
Bonjour is directly translated as "good day," as bon means "good" and jour means "day" in English. The phrase doesn't really mean "hello," to my knowledge.
The way I think of it as a greeting is by imagining an old western movie where two cowboys meet in the town square. One tips their hat and says, "Good day, sir."
That's rather elaborate, but how I imagine it in order to separate the difference of meaning ("hello" and "good day") and translation ("good day").
"Salut" is more an informal "hello" or "hi". Bonjour is the standard "hello" and may be used all during the day. The phrase "how are you" may be expressed in several ways: comment ça va ? Comment allez-vous ? or simply "Ça va ?" spoken as a question. The response "Ça va bien" means "I'm doing fine".
First, ca va (accent omitted) is not an idiom by any means. An idiom is defined as "a group of words established by usage as having a meaning not deducible from those of the individual words," which is commonly seen in examples such as "It's raining cats and dogs!" and "Don't make a mountain out of a molehill."
There is no "you" in ca va (accent omitted), as the phrase is translated to mean "Is it going?" when asked as a question, and "It's going." when used as a response to the former. Comment ca va? (accent omitted) asks, "How's it going?" rather than "How are you doing?" in English.
If you were intending to ask if the person is doing well, you would say Comment vas-tu? instead of the phrase used here.
Hope this helped! If you need any more help, let me know and I can break it down for you.
There is a broad range of expressions for "comment ça va" and its variations. As such, it is not translated literally.
- How are you?
- How's it going?
- How are you doing?
- How's everything?
- and in Australia... "How are you going?" I know it sounds strange, but it is not strange to them.
There's no "ç" in "comme ci".
"comme ci, comme ça" (also: couci-couça) is very used in French courses, but not much in real life, it's an old expression, not very used nowadays in my opinion.
If you want to remember "comment" is "how", memorize this sentence: "How is your comment?"
Bonjour is a general daytime greeting which can be translated as hello, good morning, good day, or good afternoon.
In real life you'd use context and tone to translate the feeling of the greeting more accurately, but duo does not have that. If you're ever unsure, translating as "hello" will always work.
daniel- I don't understand why you say that about Quebec. We have the same parts of the day as in France. We say bonjour all day. Duo also says that bon matin is used in Quebec only, instead of bonjour. I don't know anybody who says that around me. Sometimes, I hear it on tv or from persons who aren't natives, but this is a big mistake, nobody should say that.
It does sound like its spelled. The ç makes the c sound like s before a o and u. Otherwise it would sound like k and that wasnt what they wanted. So yes it does sound like sa va but that's their way of spelling it. So any c before an e or i sounds like s and any c before a o or u sounds like k. Ç is always an s sound and only comes before an a o or u.