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  5. "Nous mangeons une pomme."

"Nous mangeons une pomme."

Translation:We are eating an apple.

January 7, 2013

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That makes a lot of sense... a group crowded around one apple eating it..


Well, you know what people say about the sizes of french dishes...


You mean you never cut up an apple and put it out for the children to eat? It is just a snack after all.


I know you are all into learning, but man, 9 languages?... Keep going buddy... Double thumbs up...

  • 2071

I have seen this phrasing fairly often using a plural subject and a singular object in French to indicate that (in English) it actually referred to plural objects, i.e., "we are (all) eating an apple" (one apple for each of us). This may seem a shocking leap for those in early stages of learning, especially since Duolingo begins by being quite specific about translating singular and plural words. Though it is by no means a proof of this, the terms "leur chapeau" (their hat) and "leurs chapeaux" (their hats) are used with about equal frequency today. Rather than suggest that multiple people are sharing a hat, it indicates to me that this kind of expression is idiomatic. Although some may find it to be ambiguous, it would not cause an uproar. Another example is "Nous avons oublié notre parapluie" which would likely have the sense of "each one of us has forgotten our (own) umbrella. Or a teacher addressing her students, "S'il vous plaît, prenez un crayon". Each student is to take out a pencil. What is your take on this?


Yes, there are many expressions with "leur" including "à leur tour" which means "chacun son tour".


When plural is used "leurs pommes", then the speaker is talking about the group of "them" as a group rather than individually.

"leur pomme" can indicate possession of each of the group individually "each of their own apples" or "each of his or her own apple" (I don't think Duolingo is accepting these yet, correct me if I am wrong.) It can also mean that they are sharing an apple which is possible when cut up. My grandmother would call the slices "des bateaux" as she placed each slice to rock on its peel.

The best resource:

Another thing to keep in mind is that in the negative "I never wear hats.", the English is in plural but the French would be singular "Je ne porte jamais de chapeau." "Chapeau bas!" can mean "Take off your hat!" or "Take off your hats!" and is an expression which means "Bravo! Well done!" (We should take off our hats to you.) http://french.about.com/cs/vocabulary/g/chapeau.htm http://www.larousse.fr/dictionnaires/francais/chapeau/14674/locution http://www.larousse.fr/dictionnaires/francais/chapeau/14674/citation Umbrella expressions: http://dictionnaire.reverso.net/francais-definition/parapluie

Yet, French is quite able to specify each: http://www.larousse.fr/dictionnaires/anglais-francais/each/577495?q=each+of+them#831225

  • 2071

Merci bien !


It is funny but many of the same ambiguities are shared by both French and English. A teacher might say "We are eating an apple" and, as in French, we make a considered choice of likely meaning,- we guess. Are they each eating their own apple, or is one apple serving them all? In both languages only context clarifies this sentence. Shared language history, I guess.


I've definitely shared an apple with a person before. Cut it in half. Give the half to the other person. There. We are eating an apple.

Display some common sense, maybe?


Yes :facepalm: I don't understand why people imagine a crowd for this one. I've already shared an apple with someone too, but maybe some people never had this experience in their whole life, wow.


Ménage à trois et un pomme grande!!


"pomme" is feminine and "grande" for things is placed before the noun to mean big; so : "une grande pomme".

(For people "un grand homme" is "a great man" and "un homme grand" is "a tall man".)

Please scroll down at the links to this site for all the information. http://french.about.com/od/grammar/a/articles_3.htm http://0.tqn.com/d/french/1/S/d/L/3/articles.jpg http://french.about.com/od/grammar/a/adjectives_4.htm


I don't think that's what he was getting at...


Yes, but "pomme" is still feminine. http://dictionnaire.reverso.net/francais-anglais/Un%20pomme%20grande The only expressions that I could find with "pomme" that were masculine are based on other nouns that are masculine that simply use pomme as an adjective to specify which kind of: "le menu pomme" which is "the start menu" and "un vide pomme" which is an "apple corer". There might be others, but that is all I found.

Here are some expressions: http://www.expressio.fr/search.php?q=pommelang=


Yet, I think that the sense that he was going for is expressed well in the French encyclopedia: https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pomme


Mangent / Mangeons??? Difference??


So the verb is manger, to eat. The root is mang to which we add "e" for je (I) , "es" for tu(you ) "ez" for vous (you formal or you all), "e" for on, il, or elle (he, she one... kinda like in old English someone would say "when one looks on the world they see naught but beauty" except the French actually use this form), "ent" for elles or ils (they masculine and feminine) and "ons" for nous (we)

These conjugations apply to any verb ending in "er". And example would be jouer-to play. Je joue, tu joues, il joue, elle joue, on joue, elles jouent, ils jouent, nous jouons, vous jouez.

It should also be noted that any conjugation ending in (e) (es) or (ent) are pronounced excactly the same, as are ils and elles to il and elle. (Ez) is a bit different, as is (ons). Mange, manges, and mangent are all pronounced 'mahnj" while mangez is 'mahnjay', and mangont is pronounced 'mahnjoh' you kinda start to say the 'n' but don't follow through.

It should be said that I am 13 and taking French 1 and therefore by no means an expert, but I'm 99.9% certain this information is accurate.


If you hover your mouse cursor over the verb, there is a drop down menu. Click "conjugate" and you'll have your answer.


First vs third person, I believe.


Yes, first and third person plural: nous mangeons (1st person plural) and ils/elles mangent (3rd person plural).


the difference between manges mangeons and mangez? ;_;


They all derive from the verb manger (eat), and are different conjugations of the verb, depending on who is doing the action. Respectively: second person singular, first person plural and second person plural.

I eat = Je mange (1st person singular)

You eat = Tu manges (2nd person singular)

He/she eats = Il/elle mange (3rd person singular)

We eat = Nous mangeons (1st person plural)

You eat = Vous mangez (2nd person plural)

They eat = Ils/elles mangent (3rd person plural)


Thank you for this, now I can finally conjugate my verbs strait :)


You're welcome! Careful with the irregular verbs, though! :) There are other regular conjugations besides e/es/e/ons/ez/ent as well, such as: http://french.about.com/od/grammar/a/reverbs_regular.htm


Can someone explain when the final "s" in a word is dropped, as it is in this example, and when it's pronounced with the beginning of the next word (when the first letter is a vowel)? I thought this would be something like "noo mahnzhawn soon pum". Is it because the s in mangeons isn't preceeded by a vowel?


Usually, you do not pronounce the ending consonants and vowels. the only time you do is if the word ends with the letters -c -r -f -l (or the way i like to remember it is "careful"). When the ending of a word is a consonant and the beginning of the next word is a vowel, then you pronounce the consonant sound when it is usually just not pronounced. This is called a "liason." Does this answer your question?


Good tips, but your (c, r, f, l) is wrong. I think you didn't mention it's not a rule, these consonants only CAN be pronounced/mute.

• • Most of the time final "c", as other final letter is MUTE especially if there's a consonnant before the "c". --Examples of mute "c", le marc de café (the coffee marc), le porc (the pig)... ---Some exceptions with pronounced "c": donc (then), fisc (tax authorities)... • The "c" is only prononced (and not always) when it is preceed by a vowel, i.e, if you have a vowel + a "c" at a end of a word, it's often pronounced. Pronounced "c": ---Examples of pronounced "c", le pic (the pick/the peak), le sac (the bag)... ---Some exceptions with mute "c": le croc (the fang)

• • For "r", it shouldn't be in this rule, because final "r" is always preceeded with a wovel in French, and so, is never really mute, but is pronounced 2 ways (when you say it's mute, in reality it combines with the "e" to create a new sound). With any wovel, the "r" is always pronounced the regular way, but with "e", it can be pronounced 2 ways. • "er" makes the new sound "é", like in the verbs, ex: aimer, (to like/love), jouer (to play), marcher (to walk) etc....

•• For "l" It can be either pronounced or mute. (but it's scarce) Most of the time the "l" is pronounced, but by example in "fusil" (rifle), the "l" is mute.

•• For "f" Most of the time the "f" is pronounced. But in "cerf" (deer), it's mute, for "clef" (key), it's not really mute, because it makes the sound "è" in combinaison with the "e". You forgot some consonnants that can be mute or pronounced, like "t".

Some links for the mute final consonants training: -http://www.francaisfacile.com/exercices/exercice-francais-2/exercice-francais-81294.php -http://monsu.desiderio.free.fr/curiosites/g-muet.html -http://bv.alloprof.qc.ca/francais/la-langue/les-lettres-muettes.aspx (be careful, that they means here is the letters CAN be mute) -http://bdl.oqlf.gouv.qc.ca/bdl/gabarit_bdl.asp?id=3738


Can UNE POMME mean "one apple" as well as "an apple" or "the apple"?


Hi quite-contrary. Une pomme= one apple or an apple. The apple is La pomme.


Aren't "les pomme" and "les pommes" pronounced the same? I think both answers should both be right.


"les pomme" is incorrect. les=plural; pomme=singular.


Liason between "mangeons" and "une"?


Yes, there should be a liason.
Check here for a better pronunciation:


yes, but take the good habit to make the liaisons even when it's optional, the forbidden liaisons are scarce, so you will be almost always right.


Attention! Instead, say: you will almost always be right. yes indeed, it's a split infinitive, but there are many situations where NOT splitting the infinitive results in very awkward phrasing. If there is actually a rule, I don't know it. However, "almost always" is an adverbial phrase that modifies "will." Too bad students are no longer required to diagram sentences. ;-)


Oleron3, you have not yet split an infinitive. "to diagram" is the only infinitive that you have and it is not split. I bet students would appreciate "to no longer diagram sentences" but that is totally not what you meant as you were describing "required". Adverb placement between the different parts of the verb are an entirely different matter. It is even more common. One could also say "You almost always will be right." Perce_Neige was describing "right". Adverbs can describe adjectives. You are also right that the adverb could also describe the verb.
http://esl.about.com/od/grammarstructures/a/adverb_placement.htm http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/English_adverbs#Adverbs

http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/words/split-infinitives http://www.quickanddirtytips.com/education/grammar/split-infinitives?page=all

http://www.dailywritingtips.com/what-is-a-split-infinitive/ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Split_infinitive



Mea culpa, allintolearning. You are correct that there were no split infinitives. However, I am not a classroom teacher of English, so I simply did the best I could to explain word sequence in verb phrases. I do think younger native speakers of English could benefit if they would investigate the art of diagraming sentences. btw, "Snowdrop" offered to help others with French if others would help Snowdrop with English. That really was my only intent. I should have taken the time to find an actual rule. Thanks for adding some helpful information.


PERCE_NEIGE, I saw that you added your pronunciation of "Nous mangeons" to forvo, but why not add the full sentence: "Nous mangeons une pomme." to hear that liason. http://www.forvo.com/word/nous_mangeons/#fr http://www.forvo.com/search-fr/mangeons/


A quick chart at the beginning of each new introduced verb on how to conjugate would be nice thanks.

  • 2071

Try this site. You can see the conjugation for every verb in every tense. http://www.conjugation-fr.com/


Mangeons is given as both continous and simple wh at about it

  • 2071

All the conjugations can be done in more than one way in English:

  • je mange = I eat (or) I am eating (or) I do eat
  • tu mange = you eat (or) you are eating (or) you are eating (informal)
  • il/elle mange = he/she eats (or) he/she is eating (or) he/she does eat
  • nous mangeons = we eat (or) we are eating (or) we do eat
  • vous mangez = you eat (or) you are eating (or) you do eat (plural or formal)
  • ils/elles mangent = they eat (or) they are eating (or) they do eat



When they say "une" sometimes it means "a" and sometimes it means "an", its confusing because i would put "a" on some answers and the answer is really "an" then i put "an" on some answers and the right answer is really "a"


your translations should follow english rules. there is no an/a rule in french, but in English a word which starts a vowel or vowel sounds will use "an" and a word beginning with a consonant will use "a"


why is it that for other verbs ending with 'er', the right conjugation for nous is: _ _ _ ons, but for manger, it is: mangeons? why the extra 'e'?


Without the "e" it would sound like the word "mango" with "ns" at the end. It needs to be there to keep the soft sound of the "g".
proof: http://translate.google.com/#fr/en/mangons (Click the listen button)


How do you hear the difference between mangez and mangeons?


Hi awsomejesse. Barely any difference depending who is speaking. Here is a helpful site for pronunciation: www.youtube.com/watch?v=spztukovzw Take it from there, scroll to find your requirements. Hope it helps. JJ


The video link is broken. It should be only one pronounciation, we don't speak about regional accent here, but about academical French. Mangez= the "ez" is pronounced as a "é" in "café". Mangeons: the "e" is only here to make the "g" sounds like a "j" like the second "g" in "garage". Man-jon, (with the nasal "an", and the nasal "on")


Yes, more people say the second 'g' in "garage" closer to the soft French g, perhaps because we borrowed that word. The true French j and soft g sound is between our sound in giraffe and jar (which is considered softer than the g in gold), but rolled not chopped and the sound in sh. I think that is why it is easier for us at the end of a word. Yet, this sound is also found in the 's' in pleasure and measure. Here is a site for awsomejesse:



Thanks for the correction! I will correct with "garage".


Anyway, I think it's impossible to translate pronunciation from French to English (not the same sounds), the only interest here is to give an idea, a guide for beginners or people who struggle with pronunciation. The better is too listen a lot of French audio of course, (but sometimes, only sometimes, pronounciation guide can be useful too)


Yes, my brother Jacques had trouble to say his name when he was little. He used to say it with a 'Z' sound. My mom had him practice "Jacques a un joli pyjama jaune." He learned it so well that when I was born he said his name over and over to me and it was the very first word I ever said.


Type them into www.forvo.com and listen to the different recordings!


How can you tell the manges/mange/ect. Please help


Scroll to the top of this page and work your way down. This has been answered. (Temporarily unavailable: Vocabulary, a tab at the top of Duolingo page. The infinitive form for this verb is "manger", look it up by typing it into the search box (or scroll endlessly until you find it) and you can roll your mouse over the black word, you will be shown the definitions, but if you click on the word in blue, you will be given examples of use of each version of this verb with the English translation next to it and scrolling to the bottom you will see the conjugations, which forms go with which pronouns for present tense (now) and later past and future will be added.)

If you are wondering about tu manges versus Vous mangez. The first is singular familiar form for friends and family and children. The second is plural you. and also formal singular for people you don't know, or who are older than you, above you in your job, polite, respectful form.
It is confusing if you are used to English, because we only change from "eat" when "he or she eats", but most languages change for each pronoun. In French the verb does not have the "s" at the end for "il" or "elle" (he or she), but for "tu" (singular familiar form of you) instead.

(Temporarily unavailable: Here is what DuoLingo vocabulary search shows me for manger, but I already have past tenses as well. http://www.duolingo.com/word/fr/manger/Verb)

Here is another helpful site: http://french.about.com/od/grammar/a/Introduction-To-French-Verbs.htm

Here is a French verb conjugator into which you can type the infinitive form of the verb: http://french.about.com/library/verb/bl-verbconjugator.htm

Here are a couple of dictionaries:




Just to point out: the vocabulary tab is no longer available at Duolingo. Perhaps will it come back in some form in the future.


Does the fact that "une" starts with a vowel mean that the "s" in "mangeons" is pronounced in this sentence?


This liason after the verb is an optional liason. It is used only in high register situations. Not all possible liasons are always pronounced. Some are required. Some are forbidden. Some are optional. http://french.about.com/library/pronunciation/bl-liaisons.htm http://french.about.com/library/pronunciation/bl-liaisons-o.htm


so "Nous" means you and we at the same time ?


No, Abdul. Nous only means We or Us. Tu means You and is only ever singular and informal, affectionate or familiar.. Vous means You and in singular is polite/formal but in plural ("You all") can be either polite/formal or familiar depending on context.


Definite and indefinite still confusing.


Very basically French definite articles Le, La, L' (preceding a vowel sound) and Les correspond to The in English. Indefinite French articles Un, Une correspond to A, An(preceding a vowel sound) and One in English and the plural French Des corresponds to Some in English. There's more to it than that and About.com Fr definite articles and About.com Fr indefinite articles cover the subjects fully.


first it says when i put an,it says i was worng and its a,then when I put an,it says I was wrong and had to put a,


In English "a" precedes a noun beginning with a consonant. "an" precedes a noun beginning with a vowel or vowel sound (like Honorable).


could it not be we are eating a apple?


Is there a past continuous tense and a simple past tense in French? I'm sure there is...


@Bharath171477. Yes Past Continuous is called Imparfait, Passe Compose, Etre en train de an Venir de depending what actually was happening or being done or it it is just background to the sentence. Opened up a bit of a "can of worms" there mate. I don't have the academic expertise or fluency to know how to use them let alone how the verbs conjugate but there are sites which show them and there's one which sort of teaches the subject: Love to Know Past Continuous in French. I've just browsed it and already BOTH my remaining brain cells hurt. :) (About Education.com Passe Simple has help with past simple.


Is Nous somme manges une pomme correct?


We eat an apple..pural then singular...wrong sentense


Hi ManTu. This is one of the quirks of language. The implication is that we are all of us eating one apple each. . To leave out the word Each and simply imply the true sense is common usage and acceptable. To say that we are eating our appleS implies that each of us are eating more than one apple. The same confusion arises with the use of Their in plural subject singular object structures and in singular only; as in "Whether either John or Kate arrive alone tell them that their dinner is in the oven". It's a tool used to negate the cumbersome use of Him or Her and is grammatically acceptable.


should allow 'a apple'


Hi Xx. No it shouldn't. One of the really important things with languages are articles. Duo will allow some typographical errors but not with articles. They are very important. It is "a" preceding a consonant and "an" preceding a vowel Sound. Write "a" when it should be "an" and you will be marked down. Write "le" when it should be "la" and you will be marked down and rightly so. I'm retired now but as we would say in the industry "Either you're on the bus or you're not and you've missed it. Learn how to catch the bus if you want to travel on it."...........


what's the difference between [a] and [an]


Hi Tsew, in English A is the indefinite article preceding a consonant (A Tree) An is the indefinite article preceding a vowel sound (An Apple Tree). There's a strange usage "Hotel" may be pronounced either sounding the "H" or not sounding it and we have A Hotel, sounding the "H" or An Hotel without sounding the "H". Similar with History but not everything beginning with "H" may be un-aspired.


Why is there no elision between mangeons and une?


Hi Thyago, why is one needed? Mangeons ends in an (albeit very soft) consonant negating a requirement for elision introduced to transmit one vowel sound to another, and there are exceptions to that also.


Does anyone kniw some tips to learn french outside of duolingo because ice just started gcse french and its like my class is way more advanced than i am.


Hi Thomas. There's Rosetta Stone and Babbel online and both cost money (not cheap and not necessarily better than Duo). There's Linguaphone and other audio French learning ware on the market (which also cost and are not cheap.).


cool ... but i need help

  • 2071

Please read the Tips & Notes for this series of lessons (must open in a browser). Then read the comments on this page. All the questions have been answered.


Should it be "on va mange une pomme"


No, that means "We are going to eat an apple".

  • 2071

"On" and "nous" are not always interchangeable for "we". For now, stick with "nous" when you mean "we".


why are the an's and the a being so scrutinized?


Apart from accurate translation being important, this course is also used by people learning english from french after they've done the english from french course. it's called doing the reverse tree.

  • 2071

It is only that you must translate correct French into correct English. You wouldn't accept sloppy French. And you wouldn't accept sloppy English.

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