Les garçons mangent vs. Le garçon mange

I wrote "Le garçon mange due pomme rouge" instead of "Les garçons mangent ...". I don't see a way of knowing this from the context and the voice sounds exactly the same for both. Am I hearing it correctly or is there some minor pronunciation difference?

May 31, 2012


Like simonthemime said, "Les" sounds a bit different from "Le"... The sound "Le" makes doesn't exist in English, it's kinda like "Leu"... I suggest listening to difference on Google Translate (Click on the speaker on the left):|en|Les%20gar%C3%A7ons%20mangent%2C%20Le%20gar%C3%A7on%20mange.%0A%0ALes%2C%20Le

June 2, 2012

"Les" sounds open "e".

"Le" sound closed "e".

I'm a Spanish native speaker. The "e" in "les" sound like the spanish "e".

In the Spanish language we don't have the sound "e" like in French "le". When I speak French, to say the "e" sound in "le", I try to close my mouth like when I say "o" in Spanish but my throat says "e".

"Les": my mouth says "e" and my throat says "e". "Le": my mouth says "o" and my trotah says "e".

November 25, 2012

Thanks man I am a native spanish speaker too... didn't got it until now, thanks again.

May 10, 2013

Le is more of a "luh" sound, and les is more of a "lay" sound. EDIT: Also, I forgot to mention the liaison and other rule just for your knowledge. If the following word after "les" begins with a vowel, the 's' in "les" is pronounced as a 'z' (applies to any word I'm pretty sure). If the word after de, du, le, or la begins with a vowel, then for "du, du", you put d', and for "le, la", you put l', e.g, "l'eau", "d'eau". That might help you figure out what the lady voice is saying.

June 15, 2012

I also think that the version you should be using is given away in the context of the entire lesson... usually, you'll be given several exercises that use the same words or even the exact same sentence.

June 18, 2012

there is a very simple explanation. E in final position is never pronounced in French, you just don't hear anything, just /l/ for le, or /d/ for de. But if you have plural les, des, then you hear it and it is what's transcribed in English as [ɛ], the vowel in "met", or in "bread". hope this helps :)

August 29, 2012

@ Demeno - excellent and confirms what I hear daily in my village here in France - however, the automated voice here does not make that distinction, and I have tried it with slow as well. Apparently not everybody have the same auditory range and ear-learning capability, it might be something for duolingo to take into consideration if their algorithms have not already highlighted that there is an increased failure rate with this type of question.

July 7, 2012

Shoulda wrote de la or du, ain't now "due"

December 26, 2012

Le is pronounced "luh" and les is pronounced "lay". There should be a distinct audible difference.

February 7, 2013

When you they les you mouth forms a smile at the end and for le your mouth is like an o

February 14, 2013

That is all in the ears. You have to really listen to how it begins. As many have mentioned it resides within "Le" vs "Les". Le sounds more like "Luh" (Think of Mario Lemieux) and Les sounds like "lay" (Lay potato chips).

March 28, 2013

You have to listen closely to hear whether it is "Les" or "Le" because they are not quite the same. Hitting the slower button would help.

May 19, 2013

"le" and "les" before the noun are the key. They mark singular and plural. This is like the English conjugations "I eat" and "They eat." The verb form is the same but is marked by the subject in his example.

July 3, 2013

Eu também não consigo ouvir o "S", mas acredito que a frase correta é: Le garçom mange due pommes rouges.

September 8, 2013

O 'e' de Les é fechado (algo como lê), já o de Le é tipo um 'a' fechado, algo como lâ

December 25, 2013
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