# "The length is about one meter ten."

January 8, 2013

## 48 CommentsThis discussion is locked.

what is "one meter ten" in English? i don't understand the expression

one point ten meters = 1.1m = 1 meter and 10 centimeters = 110 centimeters.

And that is just the point, isn't it? How it is said in English: 1.1 meters.

Usually in the imperial system I use 6 foot 2, but as you say, for the metric system we tend to just say 1.1 meters.

In Australia the above phrasing "one metre ten" is equally or even more frequently heard than "one point ten metres".

[deactivated user]

Is this similar to how some (many?) English speaking countries outside North America say "half eight" instead of "half-past eight" for 8:30?

I've not heard that expression in Australia. We are likely to say 'Half past eight' or 'Eight thirty' But Australia is big, so maybe in other states....

I'm in Australia too and I hear and say 'half eight' all the time!

why is the d' required in this sentence? I see that in the sentence construction "Il y a environ", there is no d'

The basic construction is "une longueur de + measurement". (a length of + ...)

So, since "de" is compulsory but placed in front of a word starting with a vowel (environ), you have to use the apostrophe.

Sitesurf, is the de in this case considered partitive or preposition. Thanks in advance.

"de" is a preposition, like "of".

But Duolingo's "correct" version gives "de un"!!!

Oooops?

It is a holiday, so I decided to go with a wild card as well as the correct answer. "La longueur est d'un kilomètre dix à peu près". What is wrong with this construction, please? I can only think that the d'un my be forbidden.

It is a kilomètre not a mètre! Yes? I wish Duo would not do this!

Do what?

By the way, except for the word "kilomètre", your construction was perfect!

That word, compulsory, drove me nuts in France. I found this explanation just now if anyone is interested: "Necessary suggests that you need something based on the internal logic of the situation. A dentist is necessary if you've broken a tooth. Is it necessary to make so much noise? Yes it's necessary! I've broken a tooth! Required suggests that a rule or procedure is operating. Compulsory elevates the statement out of the personal realm and into a higher, systemic level of requirement. Primary education is compulsory in Kenya. But we would not say I've broken a tooth! A dentist is compulsory!"

One of the other choices (in the multiple choice version of this exercise) is "d'autour" rather than "d'environ". Is this a legitimate usage? If so, how does the meaning differ?

"d'autour is wrong" Aternatively to "d'environ" you could find "d'à peu près"

Dear Sitesurf, why not "d'un" but "de un"?

Shouldn't it be like "l'un" ?

Yes, "environ/à peu près d'un mètre" is the correct spelling... I changed it in the system. Thanks.

[deactivated user]

I wrote that too. As a Native French speaker I thought it worked and I still can't figure out why it doesn't to be honest

I would like to know when to use the verb "faire" and "être" when it comes to measurement. I always seem to be getting it wrong thanks

If you use a noun of measurement, use the verb être:

• la longueur / la largeur / la température / le poids / la profondeur / la surface / l'angle est de...

If you use the noun of the object measured, use the verb faire:

• l'île / le pont... fait X de long / de large
• la mer fait X de profondeur / de température
• le jardin fait X de surface
• etc...

If like a numpty and you said it wrong by mistake, French natives would be able to know what I mean still? Or would it have a different meaning by itself?

They'd know what you meant.

Perfect explanation. Thank you.

Thank you! So very clear. Here's hoping that someday there will be tips in the categories and this will be part of the tips for this section. Looking forward to those little light bulbs.

I typed est environ d'un instead of est d'environ un. Which one is more common? Or are they about the same? Or do they add slightly different emphases

"...est environ d'un mètre..." would also work?

I wrote "La longueur est environ d'un mètre dix." This was accepted, but it told me I missed a space between d' and un! I am reluctant to draw any conclusions from that.

Am surprised they don't use SI units (metres or millimetres).

We do: "un mètre dix" is short for "un mètre et dix centimètres".

Justin is correct that a centimetre is not a standard SI unit. It is a one hundredth of a metre which is an SI unit (the metre, not the centimetre!) and the other measurements are supposed to be in powers of thousands (10^6, 10^3, 10^-3, 10^-6, etc.) However, in everyday life in countries like France and Australia centimetres are preferred over millimetres because they are easier to visualise. In the construction industry, millimetres are used because they need extra precision. If your wall is out by a millimetre it is easy to fix, if it's out by a centimetre it's a big gap (or overlap) to correct!

Centi- and milli- are official prefixes to the base units, which form other units. The centimeter isn't any less of a unit, it just isn't a base unit nor is a millimeter. There is no rule that the base units are supposed be demarcated by thousandths, they just are above one-hundred/below one-hundredth. The rule is that they are all powers of 10, and they will be used according to the ability to measure/precision necessary/habit. Five decaliters would work just as well as 500 milliliters or 0.5 liters as they are the same amount, but it just isn't the usual way of labeling.

In recipes, you can find "millilitres", "centilitres" and "décilitres" and in other professional fields some measures are more popular than others, depending on how precise you need to be or how often you use them : un décamètre in construction; un double-décimètre at school; un quintal (100 kg) de céréales in agriculture, etc.

It makes a lot of sense but Americans are mentally stuck on feet, inches, pounds....for recipes in baking, my spouse (a baker by hobby) uses grams and liters...and gets very exacting reliable results.

Don't forget the major exception: the kilogram is the SI base unit, not the gram.

But big enough for a mouse, right?

In English metric, in Australia, we don't "mix" our units, we just say 110cm or 1.1m. Equally with weights, we would say 1.4 kilos (kilos meaning kilograms always), never 1kg 400g, we might say 1400g occassionally.

"La longueur est environ d' un mètre dix." Why is there a space between the apostrophe and un?

There should not be one.

Duo just marked me "almost correct" for NOT including a space after d' and offered as correct "La longueur est environ d' un mètre dix". When is d'+ space used?

It's never used. You can't write « de » before a vowel, so you have to replace both the "e" and the space with an apostrophe. *« d' un » is incorrect. « d'un » is correct.

This is the first time in the course that I've seen "environ" come before the amount instead of after (e.g., "dans un mois environ"). Is there a rule for where to place "environ", or is it a matter of style?

I think it is a matter of emphasis, whether you want to stress the measure or approximation.

I just noticed the inclusion of d' in d'environ or d'a peu pres. Interesting. We do the same (with the verb to be) in It has a length of about one metre thirty.

Duolingo told me "La longueur est environ d'un metre dix" (except with the correct accent, because I can't type those on this keyboard) was otherwise correct but needed a space so it would read "d' un"; what gives?