"C'est la ville dont je vous parlais."

Translation:It is the city of which I was telling you.

January 15, 2013

36 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/lozfroston

for the benefit of non-native English speakers, I would also agree that you are much more likely to hear in everyday spoken english:

It's the city I told you about / It's the city which I was telling you about

In England at least... we use about at the end of sentences often.

I don't see what the fuss is about ;)

October 26, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/SwervinMervin98

It's technically incorrect to end with a preposition, such as "about". This is true for both English and French.

In spite of this, people who speak English do that in everyday language. Yet, I lost marks on a history essay just because I ended a sentence with "in."

January 7, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/mere_des_chats

That no longer holds true. That outdated theory based on Latin rules was debunked long ago.

https://grammar.yourdictionary.com/parts-of-speech/prepositions/ending-a-sentence-with-a-preposition.html

https://www.merriam-webster.com/words-at-play/prepositions-ending-a-sentence-with

https://thewritepractice.com/ending-prepositions/

http://itre.cis.upenn.edu/~myl/languagelog/archives/001702.html

And just to get under the skin of anyone who still thinks this is a rule worth following, a short story:

A father goes up to his son's bedroom, a book under his arm, ready to read him to sleep. The boy notices the book and says: 'Daddy, what did you bring that book that I don't want to be read to out of up for?'

January 7, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/deldar182

I think the english here is totally fine, but just not commonly used.

April 23, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/WarsawWill

The French is in the imperfect so I think the past continuous is more appropriate here - "It's the town/city (that) I was talking to you about."

November 14, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/smearedink

I completely agree. You can certainly tell someone "of a city." You might actually interpret it slightly differently than telling them "about a city." I'd say if you told someone "of" something, you've probably just mentioned it, whereas if you've told them "about" something, you've described it.

May 7, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/juandenil

'It's the city I told you about' avoids stilted grammar like ' of which'

April 3, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/sam.gomp

Suggested answer: "it's the city which i was speaking to you"... Not english!

December 26, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/EmilyCarro4

Was just about to point that out

August 21, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/Brenda42

The word 'about' should be at the end of the sentence

February 2, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/Brenda42

I agree it should be - It is the city that I told you about

February 1, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/gblico1

This illustrates what I think are some of the major drawbacks of Duolingo: not providing enough instruction in the intricacies and mechanics of French grammer, and translating from French to sometimes gramatically incorrect English. These show especially after one gets past the basic level and moves on to the intermediate. I am finding level 15 - Pronouns - particularly difficult, so much so that I'm thinking of giving Duolingo a rest until I acquire a greater working knowledge of French grammar elsewhere. I would nevertheless recommend Duolingo as a great language-learning tool for beginners. And, it's free!!!

January 14, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/DianaM

<Shrug> You learn by doing, you learn by making errors and having them corrected. Nothing wrong with that. It will work better, mind you, when DL gets smarter and doesn't make so many errors itself....

February 8, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/ewynne

I agree, the errors and weaknesses of this program are very evident beyond the basic level.

May 3, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/DianaM

"It is the city I was telling you about" is now accepted. Apr2014

April 7, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/Bookwormer333

Why is there still no option to write 'about' instead of the ridiculously antiquated 'of which' that is not actual English usage.....and I note that on all these French pages with a large number of comments about poor English translations the option to report the English has been taken away... Is there a 300 year-old vampire running the French pages??

February 25, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Elizabeth870279

I say “ of which “ all the time - I am American and well-educated - whatever your preference is, please do not criticize others’ preferences

February 25, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/mmematthews

When I put my mouse over the word DONT it says "whose". In this sentence, DONT means "about which" in this sentence, so this could cause confusion.

February 8, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/Knightingale122

Those are suggestions on what the word could mean.

May 3, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/hcurran

Strictly speaking, it should really be "the town about which I spoke to you" and certainly not as it is translated!

March 1, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/Muzorewi1984

I put in "it is the town which I was speaking to you about"

And was told it should be "it is the town OF which I was speaking to you about"

"of which about". What on earth? Is that some sort of weird double preposition use in English I'm not aware of? I'll report it anyway.

June 16, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/DianaM

Yeah, that's just wrong.

February 8, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/S0R0USH

How can I tell if it's parler or parlais?

Is parler pronounced as, parlehhhh and parlais more abrupt in its ending, like parluh?

January 12, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/mere_des_chats

I believe parler is [pahRlay] while parlais is [pahRleh].

January 7, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/ianrobertshaw61

Why the past tense

March 16, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/DianaM

Um....why not?

March 18, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/Wolvesbane
September 3, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/mere_des_chats

I don't think so. Dire is to say. Parler is to talk or speak. If you say something, you just utter the word(s). If you speak about something, you discuss it.

January 7, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/alex546141

Duolinguo's sentence is exactly how i translate by my nonenglish mind

November 22, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/10Vo8Cvs

Couldn't the present tense be logical? "This is the city I am telling you about"???

December 12, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/mere_des_chats

That would be c'est la ville dont je vous parle.

Please pay attention to the conjugated tense of the verb. The one used here is the first person l'imparfait form of parler (parlais) not le présent (parle).

December 12, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/teleduncan

... And I'm just sitting here wondering why it's dont and not que /o\

January 18, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/SwervinMervin98

"Parler de" means "to speak/tell of" or "to talk/speak/tell about".

"Of" and "About" are both English prepositions. "De" is a French preposition. In both English and French, it is incorrect to end a sentence with a preposition (even though many English people do so anyway).

Rather than: "It is the city which I was telling you of." It should be: "It is the city of which I was telling you."

Likewise, you NEVER say: "C'est la ville que je vous parlais de." But instead, it's: "C'est la ville dont je vous parlais."

("De" merges with "que" to form "dont".

"que" = "which/that" "dont" = "of which/about which")

January 18, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Elizabeth870279

"De" merges with "que" to form "dont". No kidding? really? I get that lorsque is lors que and pourquoi is from pour quoi, and there are others like this, but really is that where dont comes from?

January 19, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/SwervinMervin98

I mean... I guess I didn't mean that too literally. My point is, "dont" acts as the replacement for both "que" and "de", because we can't have "de", at the end of the sentence. And we can't just simply remove "de", because we want to say "telling [you] of", not "telling [you]".

January 19, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Elizabeth870279

I see! But thank you because it’s a useful way for me remember it - else Dont has no associations for me other than violin etudes

January 19, 2019
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