"Elles écrivent une lettre."

Translation:They are writing a letter.

January 19, 2013

38 Comments
This discussion is locked.


https://www.duolingo.com/u83rmensch

this is down right impossibly to determine that they were reffering to "they" and not just "her/she"

January 26, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/brg71

I agree. When played at normal speed, I can maybe hear an s on the end of elle. But when played slowly, it clearly says elle.

February 2, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/styagi2

You can tell because she says elles ecrivent, with the -ve sound at the end, rather than elle ecrit, with the -it sound.

February 12, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/dvalenca

and the s of elles come together with the é of écrivent...

March 3, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/Mswen

I could not hear the -vent at the end. i started writing elles because the lesson had been about plural, but I changed it back to singular.

September 10, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE

You can hear a "v" sound at the end. http://fr.forvo.com/word/%C3%A9crivent/#fr

April 4, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/booradlus

Because when you pronounce the words individually, you don't pronounce the liaison.

February 8, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE

It's normal, because without a liaison, "elles" sounds like "elle". At normal speed, you have the liaisons and not only the isolated word. "Ecrit" (elle écrit) and "Ecrivent" (elles écrivent) are not pronounced the same! Elle écrit = ay-lay-kree Elles écrivent = ayl-zay-kreev. Pay attention to the final "v" sound, very soft and quick, and the "zay" sound in the middle.

April 4, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/ataltane

What do you think about the pronunciation "ele zekriv"? I mean, that's what I hear here: elles has two syllables. From school French, I thought it was pronounced just like elle except with the possibility of s-liaison. Are both right?

March 7, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/mere_des_chats

Both are not right. What you learned in school is correct. Elles is only one syllable: /el/ without liaison or /elz/ with liaison. The /elez/ pronunciation sometimes heard on the audio is wrong.

January 12, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/afsita

she is pronouncing the 's' at the end of 'elles' because the next word 'écrivent' begins with a vowel. if this were singular, there would be no liason with the 's'. also, she then pronounces the 'v' en 'écrivent'. when you want to say "elle écrit une lettre", it sounds like "el ecree oon lettr", but if it's "elles ecrivent une lettre" then it sounds like "elsecreev oon lettr". i really hope that made sense!

March 7, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE

It's true, the only thing is "une" is not prononced "oon.

April 4, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/Marcus776115

Elles ecrivent une lettre is thay write a letter not thay are writing a letter

December 2, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/n6zs
  • 1719

It may be translated either way. Both are correct.

October 18, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/MissVonNoxious

When it asks for they, I never know whether its masculine or feminine :(

April 20, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE

You can write either the masculine or the feminine for the exercice when there is no clue. Both are accepted, and both have to. One time use the feminine, and the other, use the masculine, to get used to.

April 4, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/cherylfoxx

listening slowly, there are only five syllables, but at normal speed there are 6.

November 6, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/Wunel

When I hear it at normal speed I hear 5 syllables, "el-ez-eh-kreev-une-let" and possibly a 6th if the -re of lettre is a syllable, I can't quite tell.

November 7, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE

Normally "ayl-zay-kree-vuhn-laytr"= 5 syllabes, some people make a "tre" sound in "lettre" longer than other, there's always difference in the way people pronounce words or sentence.

April 4, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/aowstin

Does anyone know how to pronounce écrivent? I can pronounce most of the French R's, but this one makes me sound weird.

December 30, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/BeckiWittman

What... Isn't "They write a letter" and "They are writing a letter" the same phrase in French?

February 8, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/n6zs
  • 1719

Yes, it is the same in French.

October 18, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Gail.D1

They...does not indicate the feminine.. They could be masculine... They could be male and female.

January 16, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/mere_des_chats

What you don't seem to realize is while you may have had the English to French exercise, in which "they" can indeed be elles or ils, many of us got the French to English exercise.

For the latter, the sentence we were asked to translate was elles écrivent une lettre. Of course the correct translation is "they are writing a letter" but there are people who were confused about why elles could not be replaced by another feminine plural word. That is what the discussion along those lines is about.

No one disputes that "they" in English could mean males, females or a mixture of both.

January 17, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/gankhan

can anyone explain why "The women are writing a letter" wrong.

January 30, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/mere_des_chats

There is no les femmes in the sentence so how can it be "the women"? The translation for elles is "they" in reference to a feminine plural noun. And so for all we know, they could be little girls or cartoon cows.

January 30, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/liaschlaudy

isnt elles the girls?

November 14, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf

"elles" is "they"

"the girls" is "les filles"

November 14, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/EmmaDore1

Why is it elles, not ils for "they" in this instance?

March 15, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf

Of course, both "ils" and "elles" are accepted, if the rest of the sentence is correct.

March 15, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/NatBuggins

I thought "elles" was for girls? How come it was "they" not "she"?

August 11, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf

he = il

she = elle

they = ils or elles

August 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/psychokilljoy6

Can I use "Ils" too in this sentence? If not, what's the difference between "Elles" and "Ils"?...

August 23, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/mere_des_chats

If translating from English yes. The two words mean "they". Elles means "they" are all female. Ils means "they" are all male or a mixture of both.

August 23, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/DanielVald313340

Why is not pronounced the ent on writing? Ecriv or ecrivant?

October 16, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/mere_des_chats

Because that's just how the language is; the last "ent" of verbs for the 3rd Person Plural conjugation is never pronounced. Here are some examples: http://www.languageguide.org/french/grammar/conjugations/

October 17, 2017
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