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"Ne parlez pas de travail : nous sommes en vacances !"

Translation:Do not talk about work: we are on holiday!

January 12, 2013



Is there a reason why 'Ne parle pas de travail...' is not accepted?


Was this your question: http://i.imgur.com/I1wZ11m.jpg ?

There are several complaints above about "parlez" being the only accepted answer for this question. I'm fairly sure "parle", "parlons", and "parlez" should all be accepted here since there is no English to guide you.


"Parle" should also be accepted - there is no way of telling whether the speaker is talking to one person or a group. Furthermore, if they are on holiday together it's reasonable to assume they wouldn't be using "vous" - so if it's one person it has to be "Ne parle pas..."


I agree ... I just put ne parle pas but thought ne parlez pas was equally valid. I wondered why there were mulitple valid options.


Why wouldn't "parles" be accepted?


In imperative, the 2nd person singular -s disappears in 1st group verbs (infinitive ending in -er), unless there is "en" or "y" attached to it, in which case you have to use the -s.

  • parle ! (1st group: no -s) = speak!
  • parles-en ! = talk about it!
  • va ! = go
  • vas-y ! = go (there)!


Shouldn't the first half be "Ne parlons pas de travail" or, the second half should be "vous êtes en vacances"?

I was marked incorrect for answering "parlons" (on the drop down), but the sentence seems like there is a subject-disagreement between the first and second half.


The sentence is fine. "Ne parlons pas de travail" would translate more as "Let us not talk about work."
"Ne parlez pas de travail" is more like a general command/order towards other people. If you were talking to one person it would be "Ne parle pas..." Several..."Ne parlez pas" A group including yourself "Ne parlons pas..."
So if you were talking to two colleagues from work that you bumped into at a restaurant and they started talking to you and your wife about something at work, you'd respond "Ne parlez pas de travail: nous sommes en vacances!" - "Don't talk about work, we're on vacation!" At least that's my take on it, maybe a native speaker has a better explanation.


No better explanation, yours is perfect!


I was more checking to make sure: "Ne parlons pas de travail: nous sommes en vacances" is correct.

I was given:

"Ne [----------] pas de travail: nous sommes en vacances"

And my options were various conjugations of parler, so I chose "parlons" because I think the sentence: "Let's not talk about work: we're on vacataion" makes sense.


I had the same thing. And I agree that both seem to work.


I would probably use a comma here, or maybe a semi-colon. Why do French use colons so often?


Colons are used to introduce an explanation or a development of the first part. In this sentence, the punctuation sign replaces "car, parce que, puisque..."


Yes, all forms should be accepted


is somebody tell me what's wrong with my answer "don't talk about job, we are on vacation!" i don't get why it wasn't accepted....


The English word "job" needs an article (eg "a", "the", "that", "your" etc) but in the French sentence we are NOT given an article. So it's obviously better to use the word "work" (for "travail") , because it doesn't NEED an article.

It's always "a job" or "your job" etc, (which specifies whose/which job), but with "work", you can just say "work" on its own, which is far more vague. (It could be anyone's work, or just "work in general".)

Hope that helps!


yes it was very helpful! thank you. I always have some problems with the articles.


All of them should be right and accepted


Why not "...parlez pas DU travail?" If i wanted to say "don't talk about spiders," would i not say "ne parlez pas DES araignées?"


"Ne parlez pas du travail" = Do not speak of/about the work.


I see. But like I said, if I instructed you not to talk about spiders generally, wouldn't we use the definite article "ne parlez pas des (de+les) araignées?" Or would we say "ne parlez pas d'araignées?" Thank you sitesurf.


Talking about work as a general concept or spiders as a whole category can be said "Ne parlez pas de (de+du) travail" and "Ne parlez pas d'araignées (de+des)", respectively.

Talking about your job or about specific spiders can be said "Ne parlez pas du (de+le) travail" and "Ne parlez pas des (de+les) araignées", respectively.

However, there is an overlap and out of context, "le travail" and "les araignées" can also be generalizations and as a consequence, "don't speak about work in general/spiders in general" can be said "ne parlez pas du (de+le) travail/des (de+les) araignées".


Thank you, Sitesurf, for taking the time to address our questions. It is truly appreciated!


Why is "Ne parles pas de travaille" incorrect?


In the imperative for "tu", 1st group verbs (infinitive ending in -er) and a few others (offrir, ouvrir...) lose the -s unless "en" or "y" are appended.

  • Ne parle pas ! = Don't speak!
  • Parles-en ! = Speak about it!
  • Parles-y ! = Speak there!


Both parlons and parlez are correct. snafu.


"parlons" is "let's talk" (we) while "parlez" is "talk" (you)


But why wouldn't one also say "ne parlons pas"?


That's what both quiche84, and myself were commenting on, and I think ronjudd was saying. For the multiple choice drop-down conjugation both "parlez" and "parlons" should be accepted.

Sitesurf is pointing out the differences in their meaning. So if you get this as a translation question, only one is correct. "Ne parlons pas de travail" is "Let's not talk about work", and "Ne parlez pas de travail" is "Don't talk about work."

I reported (a while back) that "parlons" should be accepted for drop-down, but it sounds like it hasn't been fixed yet.


No, I don't agree: you cannot expect that the drop-down menu gives you wrong hints: "mangez" is not interchangeable with "mangeons". The sentence here is clear: the speaker is inviting someone or several persons to stop talking about work. That command does not include the speaker himself or he would have said "Ne parlons pas.../ Let's not talk...".


OK, I had to practice my imperatives about about 6 times before I hit the question again, but I finally got it!

Here is a screenshot of the picture everyone is complaining about:


As the question is, pretty much any imperative form of "parler" should be accepted, but to an English speaker, "parlons" feels the most natural from the second clause (nous sommes...), but this is marked as incorrect.

I hope that clears stuff up!


Let's put it this way: In English you could say either "Don't talk about work, we are on vacation." or "Let's not talk about work, we are on vacation." The latter is at least, if not more, commonly heard.

If you wanted to say, "Let's not talk about work, we are on vacation" is there some reason why "Ne parlons pas de travail : nous sommes en vacances" would not be a good translation? If not, than it should be clearly be an acceptable answer to the question patlaf posted a screenshot of.

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