"Un ours"

Translation:A bear

January 15, 2013



I stand corrected! Studying both Spanish and French at the same time can be dangerous. Thanks for your input.


Spanish oso and French ours (along with Italian orso and Portuguese urso) both come from Latin ursus, so they are related. This Latin root also survives in a handful of English words such as ursine (bearlike), as well as specialized terms such as the scientific name for the bear family, Ursidae, and the well-known constellation Ursa Major, the Great Bear. Thinking about etymology can actually be really helpful for remembering foreign words. So although studying Spanish and French simultaneously can be dangerous, it can also be really helpful, since many of the words you know in Spanish have cognates in French, making the French words easier to learn, and vice versa.

The English word bear, if you're curious, is of Germanic origin, and is a cognate with German Bär, Dutch beer, Danish bjørn, and Norwegian and Swedish björn.


Very interesting, thanks.

A couple of French translations:

the bear family: la famille des ursidés

the Great Bear: la Grande Ourse (fem)


Brilliant JMBarnes. Thanks. By the way, how do you access those accents on the vowels you've used, can't find them on my keyboard.


On android you dont need to add extra languages. Holding some letters, such as a, for a short while makes a list of letters popped out.


Not on all android devices, not all the keyboard apps and not for all the languages, just some, some and some.


I said so since it worked on some android devices, including mine, which I think all of them were samsung though.


Depends on what you're using duolingo on, a computer, an android device or an ios one. Generally speaking you'd add the different languages you want (french, german, etc) to the keyboard, and then swich when needed. For some letters you have to hold another button on keyboard though, instead of tapping (assuming it's not a computer keyboard).


If English and Computer, you can use the International English Keyboard.


Very helpful.... if only you could give reliable and robust direction to how to access it


OS is the operating system, such as windows 7. Anyway assuming you're using windows 7, 8 or later, I gave the rough instructions in another question's comments, but here it is in more detail:

Open control panel, search for "input" at the top and choose "Change input methods". In the new page that opens up, pres "Options" in front of the English language, and in the new page, press "Add an input method", here you can choose any input method you want, I can suggest "United States-International", then hit add and you have it alongside your typical English input method. (You can also remove the old method in once you're back to the previous page if you get confused by having 2 methods.)

Afterwards by selecting this method, you can type é by pressing ' and then e, or ç by pressing ' and then c . The keys to remember are ' (single quotation), " (double quotation), `(at the left of the number 1 key at the top), and ^ at the top. This way you can type all the French accents easily, just takes some getting used to.


Norwegian also uses the ø in bjørn.


Interesting and in the end the 2 groups URSUS and BJÖRN come from IE but from different IE-words: (BEEHIVE) DESTROYER resp. BROWN (ANIMAL)

We have IE: RKTOS, Sanscrit: RAKSAS = destroyer (of beehives) gives ursus (Latin), ours (Fr), oso (Sp), orso (It)] as well as άρκτος (Gr, árktos)

and IE: BER = brown (animal): ancient Nordic: bernu, björn (Sw, Is), bjørn (Da, Norw) and ancient German: bero, bär (Ge) and the English bear must belong here


Is the s supposed to be pronounced? The computer does, and I fell like I remember it being pronounced when I learned it in school, but what exactly is the rule for Ss and the end of words? Thanks.


Basically S is always silent on the ends of words, except when it's totally not.

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Yes, it's pronounced in this case. There's no general rule, you just have to learn the exceptions, often they are words of foreign origin, usually English or Greek, but also Latin when the original Latin word is used.

Notable examples are fils (son), autobus, tennis, maïs (corn), oasis, os (bone; silent in plural!), mars (March/Mars), sens (sense, direction), as (ace), palmarès, pénis, herpès, biceps and many others especially medical terms.

The trickiest are tous and plus, because it depends on meaning: http://french.about.com/od/grammar/a/tout.htm http://french.about.com/library/weekly/aa101300v.htm


how would you pronounce the plural?


"ours" is singular and plural masculine, "ourse "and "ourses" are feminine

all of them are pronounced the same way OOrS


Hi Samuel. I learn every day. I asked a Moderator here what does "❤❤❤" mean and she said: "On a language learning site where innocent students as young as 9 study, "❤❤❤" means We're The Fools". I'm learning. Why do you consider yourselves so? Surely it is not foolish to come to a language learning site to progress with the rest of the world who seem to be doing really well? Please explain. Thanks in advance.


How exactly is this pronounced though - un-hourse?


How do I pornounce ours? :)


Un ours, with the S. You can also listen to deux ours ... http://el.forvo.com/search/un%20ours/


Am I the only one who has a hard time with the way the app pronounces this word? I hear "los".

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