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  5. "Ils mettent leurs chaussures…

"Ils mettent leurs chaussures."

Translation:They are putting on their shoes.

January 7, 2013



Is "Il met leur chaussure" correct? since they pronouce the same...


No, it's not. "Il" is singular and means "he", "leur" is plural and means "their". So the combination "il" + "leur" is not possible; only the combination "ils" + "leur" is. In this sentence "leur" becomes "leurs" with an "s" at the end, because it changes with the noun: chaussures is plural.


It makes sense if he's putting their shoes on. Like a dad getting his kids ready to go outside ...

  • 2211

Either by reading "ils mettent" or listening ("il met" vs "ils mettent"), this can only be understood as "they". The "t" in "il met" is silent. You can listen to the audio and hear the "t" quite clearly in "ils meTtent" which is a clear audible clue that it is the third person plural conjugation of the verb.


The only explanation I could give for this is that the 't' on 'met' is silent, unlike the audio for this question.


Cannot see why the verb "mettre" cannot be translated as "to put", not "to put on". People can simply put their shoes somewhere, right?


They can, yes, but then I think you have to change the verb to something like poser, because it's my understanding that mettre + [un vêtement] means "to put on [an item of clothing]."


Whats the difference between leur and leurs? isnt it always plural.


think: les étudiants aiment leur professeur. ( = their language teacher); Les étudiants aiment leurs professeurs. (= their teachers of history, maths etc.). Les parents aiment leur fils/ ...leurs enfants. ( only one son/ two or more children)


No, don't understand this explanation sorry. Can you present some more explanations like "the parents love their sons / their sons." i don't understa f what the S in leurS adds


leur is singular, leurs is plural ( leur stylo > their pen leurs montres > their watches) - les enfants aiment leur père, leur mère - ils aiment leurs parents. = The children love their father, their mother, - they love their parents.


Please see below Julia


"They're putting on their boots"

No good?


Seconded. Boots are suggested as a definition and yet it is marked incorrect in the sentence.


Infuriating at times I agree. Northernguy has in other threads explained well how this happens and I'm not as eloquent as he but if I may; This is a programmed system and the drop-down usually is helpful, not just for the task in question but for future lesson's reference. On very rare occasions not one of the drop-down hints bare any relation to the task to be solved and are thus of no help. Now that is either a case for the "Report a Problem" link or it is a route to losing a heart and accessing the "Discussion" thread where excellent helpers explain what we have been seemingly unfairly confronted with. I am uncertain whether Duo intends this or whether it is actually a mistake, however does it matter so much as when we lose a heart we tend never to forget it nor the reason why and thus the lesson is learned, indelibly? So at this stage: For shoes use chaussures and for boots use Bottes and dont, as I keep doing mix chaussettes with chaussures! Bonne Chance mes amis.


Why is "They put their shoes on" incorrect?


Why isn't "wear" a correct translation?


I think because mettre is 'to put' not 'to wear' and putting on shoes is different than wearing them (in other words, they are in the act of putting on shoes)


"wear" is in the hover-list for "mettent," so it's a bit misleading.

  • 2211

There is a tiny bit of overlap with the English "wear". If you look in your closet and ask yourself, what shall I wear today, the French verb would be "mettre" (meaning "wear" in the sense of I am going to put it on). However, once you have put on the clothing, you are now wearing it. This is the verb "porter". In short, when "mettre" is used in the context of clothing, you are safe in thinking that it means "to put on". When "porter" is used in the context of clothing, you are safe in thinking that it means "to wear".


Yes that's right. The verb to wear is 'porter'.


For anyone confused

leurs means "their" indicating plurality of the situation

Therefore Il met ---becomes--- Ils mettent


I think that's actually backwards. I think the hard "t" in "meTTent" tells you that it is "mettent," rather than "met" and therefore "ils," not "il." Then logically it has to be "chaussures," not "chaussure," because if between them they own a single shoe they cannot both or all but it on at the same time, and if "chaussures," then it must be "leurs." I am struggling with French so would appreciate if a native speaker would confirm if this is correct or not.


Well done mate. No non-French speaker finds audio easy at all and to begin with, your method is the only way. A really useful post. Lingots for you.

  • 2211

You are correct, sir. Good job.


Why doesn't don work along with put on? They mean the same thing.


@MarkKauf. Very useful question. There are schools of though around this verb and I admith that I don't know to which the programmer adheres, also whether US English differs from UK English on this point but to be honest, whilst I'm well acquainted with the verb Don, I don't recall it ever being used for footwear of any sort. I seems to be preferred primarily for items of clothing. Maybe this is the reason. Your query has got me researching which is a bonus for me, thank you, have a lingot.


Considering don is a contraction of the Middle English do on it should be appropriate for shoes but without some examples of that usage I'm not positive.


Agreed Mark but I just have never come across its use for footwear and the OUD only refers to clothing both for Don and Doff.


After some research I've been able to find examples of the usage of both don and doff regarding shoes. The earliest example in the mid 19th century but also more contemporary sources. At this point I'm considering it a valid if rare usage.

  • 2211

Think about how to say it in French. If you honestly want to think it's "don", you are at liberty to do so. But why, really?


Excellent, Mark. I take your word for it so thanks for the info.


Apparently "they put their shoes on" is incorrect!


english speakers: why - they are putting dresses ON - and - He is putting ON a hat? (look at the place of ON)


This can be phrased either way with the same meaning... "they are putting on hats/dresses" and "they are putting hats/dresses on".

However, it's interesting to point out that many of us were taught never to end a sentence with a preposition. There is a famous quote (with many variations) attributed to Winston Churchill regarding this topic. After finishing a sentence with a preposition, he reportedly responded with "This is the sort of nonsense up with which I will not put." This is humorous because it correctly follows the grammar rule but sounds ridiculous to any native English speaker.


Which is why the rule for never ending a sentence in a preposition is counterfeit.


Wow! Great word! Can I use it for other items of clothing too, or is there a different verb for putting on pants, shirt, hat, glasses, earrings, etc., like in Japanese?

  • 2211

"Mettre" used in the context of any clothing means "to put on".


How do you know from the pronunciation that it's chaussure and not chaussureS?


You cannot. You have to listen to other words in the sentence or rely on context.

[deactivated user]

    i've heard chaussure, not chaussures...

    • 2211

    How can you hear "chaussure", not "chaussures"? Because they sound exactly alike. However, you can tell from other words in the sentence (the T in "mettent", for example) that the subject is plural, and reasonably infer that "chaussures" must be plural as well.


    Just curious, why is it "leurs chaussures" and not "ses chaussures?" What's the difference here?


    Because the subject is plural. If the subject were « il » or « elle », then it would have been « ses ».

    Singular subject / plural object = ses

    Plural subject / singular object = leur

    Plural subject / plural object = leurs


    Why not "they wear their shoes"?


    That would be "ils portent leurs chaussures".


    I've found that with every single verb ending in ent, the voice doesn't pronounce the ent, but I have to if I want a pass. For example, mettent. The voice example says "il met lur shosur", but I have to say "il mettent lur shosur" to pass. I'm left confused.


    Aren't we all, John? Language is supposed to aid communication so why is it so confusing, eh? I've held back here because I'm no linguist nor grammarian but you've had no response. I'll try..... As far as I've learnt, nomatter what the conjugation of the verb it's enunciation is the same. So here, the "-ent" isn't sounded. Usually all conjugations of French verbs, irrespective of their spelling are sounded the same. John, what is it that you are trying to pass? Is it the Duo audio or are you studying at school/college for an exam? Please respond to my activity rather than clutter here. Votre ami JJ.


    Oh I'm sorry I think you've picked me up wrong. I did eight years of French through school and have tutored it in the past. I've just recently felt I was slipping in it, so I took up DuoLingo here. I know that you're not meant to pronounce the "ent", but the vocal exercises force me to say "mettent" to pass the question. Since I know this is wrong, I'm unsure why DuoLingo won't accept the correct pronunciation on these verbs.

    • 2211

    Hi, John. It's only that the "T" in "ils meTtent" is pronounced. It sounds like the English word "met". However, the "T" in "il met" is silent. The final -ent is not pronounced on any third-person plural conjugations.


    Dude I'm aware. I'm saying that these voice questions are forcing me to pronounce the -ent, even though I know I shouldn't, because I'll be marked wrong otherwise. I know I'm not supposed to pronounce the -ent. But I'm marked wrong if I don't. It's a problem with the software, not with my understanding.

    • 2211

    Well, alright then. So we are aware that we do not pronounce the -ent ending as if "mettent" has two syllables, but we do pronounce the second T, which makes it sound like "MET". Regarding the voice recognition application, it is well known that there are issues with it. Neither you nor I can do anything about it. If it is troublesome, turn it off in your profile settings. But please don't turn your angst against me. I'm trying to help you.


    Maybe many of the comments here are based on the female voice. I just listened to the male voice and I think the key to getting this correct is to listen to the pronunciation of 'mettent'. You can clearly hear the 'ent', especially on the slowed version. I have not heard the female version. To those who are using an android version or other more compact version, you may not have the 'slowed' feature, which I have found extremely useful. (I have used all versions). Also, as an aside, I must say that the android version, for example, is a lot easier than the full version.


    Why is they are putting on their shoes wrong


    Actually Brianna, two tings: 1) they both mean the same thing. 2) "on" is a preposition and there is a school of thought which says that in English one should never end a sentence with a preposition and so Duo is grammatically wrong with their translation to English but as Neverfox says it's easy to ridicule that rule.Sir Winston Churchill made a really laughable sentence illustrating how silly it can sound to avoid ending a sentence with "with" ( a preposition). "Sir, this is something up with I shall not put!"


    I thought that "to put on" is a reflexive verb, "se mettre." Without the reflexive pronoun "se", I thought that this sentence meant "placing the shoes somewhere", but not "putting them on." Apparently I was wrong.


    How about "Ils mettent leur chaussure."


    I had the audio version of this question and I typed "Ils mettent leurs chaussures" and it was marked wrong, it said because I used the plural chaussures instead of the singular chaussure. An error I presume?


    I was marked wrong for using "chaussures" and told it should have been singular.


    I wrote Ils mettent leur chaussures. It was marked wrong (which it is) because it should have said Ils mettent leurs chaussures. But the explanation given is wrong: "You used the plural "chaussures" here, instead of the singular "chaussure". Ils mettent leurs chaussures".


    Why is.... leurs chaussures used here but when you say "They are taking off their coats" it is.... leur manteau ? I am quite confused now.


    Why it doesnt pop up the translation together ?any more


    Please explain why is "They are putting on their shoes." translated to "Ils mettent leurs chaussures." (plural) BUT "They are taking off their coats." is translated to "Ils enlèvent leur manteau" (singular) Has it something to do with the fact that each person has two shoes. Would "They are taking off their shirts." for instance then be translated to "Ils enlèvent leur chemise." and "They are taking off their socks." be translated to "Ils enlèvent leurs chaussettes."??


    In some contexts with leur ou leurs, an ambiguity persists: the singular indicates that what is possessed is unique for each one or is possessed in common, and the plural indicates either that each one has several things, that each one has a thing, which does several things in total. In cases where there should be no ambiguity, you have to use chacun or chaque:

    ★ - Ils ont payé leur facture. (Ils avaient une seule facture pour tous ou une facture chacun.) = They paid their bill. (They had one bill for everyone or one bill each.)

    ★ - Ils ont payé leurs factures. (Chacun avait plusieurs factures ou chacun avait la sienne.)= They paid their bills. (Everyone had several bills or each had his own.)

    Chacun a payé sa facture. (aucune ambiguïté) = Everyone paid their bill. (no ambiguity)

    Chacun a payé ses factures. (aucune ambiguïté) = Everyone paid their bills. (no ambiguity)

    "They are putting on their shoes." = "Ils mettent leurs chaussures." – we always put on two shoes…

    "They are taking off their coats." = "Ils enlèvent leur manteau" or Ils enlèvent leurs manteaux = we know that Chacun has his own Manteau, no ambiguity

    "They are taking off their shirts." = "Ils enlèvent leur chemise." ou leurs chemises, but we know everyone has his own shirt…

    "They are taking off their socks." = "Ils enlèvent leurs chaussettes." Plural is better, because each one has two…

    fonte: http://www.ladictee.fr/grammaire/truc_astuce_grammaire/leur_ou_leurs_avec_un_s_ou_non.html


    "they put their shoes"

    Not good? I mean, we say it like this in English sometimes..


    With clothing, mettre means "put on" or "slip into." If you wanted to talk about putting the shoes somewhere, you might use poser to avoid confusion.


    I don't think it would be correct to simply say "They put their shoes." It begs the question, they put their shoes WHERE? It sounds more natural to say "They put their shoes on" or "They put on their shoes." :)


    Regarding "leur chaussure" and "leurs chaussures": We have had "Les hommes mangent une fraise" before. So it could have been just one shoe. In duolingo, you can't infer anything, unfortunately. That being said, I've read the other posts in this discussion (Very helpful. Thanks, George and the others.) and understand how to find the correct translation. It just bugs me that you have to listen for a tiny "t"-sound in one word to know how to spell three other words in the sentence. (I can't seem to use reply for a comment but only for the discussion)


    Why is it shoes, but not socks? What is the difference?


    Hi Marija. Chaussures=Shoes. chaussettes=socks.


    i wrote they put on their shoes!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! and it was correct


    I am confused. Isn't mettre in this context a reflexive verb? So shouldn't it be "ils les mettent leurs chaussures"


    In your example, "les" is not a reflexive pronoun, but a direct object pronoun, and would thus replace "leurs chaussures." If it was already known that "their shoes" were being talked about, "Ils les mettent" would be fine, but not "Ils les mettent leurs chaussures."


    I don't see how I'm supposed to hear the difference. BS!


    I assume you mean the difference between singular and plural. The way to distinguish is to listen for the possessive pronoun. If just one person is putting on his/her shoes, it would be "ses chaussures", "ses" being the plural form of "his/her" in French. If MANY people were putting on THEIR shoes, it would be "leurs chaussures" (as in the exercise). That would tell you that the subject is plural. And you know it's "leurs" and not "leur" because more often than not, people put on more than one shoe. ;)

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