Since I first came across the usage in this example 2 months ago I have been exposed to the notion of French use of le/ la to mean all examples of something which is the way way that Duo determines la to have been used in this phrase.
English: I like the soup (meaning the soup on the table, menu etc.)
French: J'aime la soupe. (very specific, the soup on the table, menu etc.)
There is another way to speak of soup which is to say: I like soup, any soup, all soup where there is no soup on the table, in fact there isn't any soup anywhere really but just the general idea of soup. Since French requires an article for most nouns and they don't have a general type article they have decided to use le/ la with a different meaning to serve that function.
I like soup (all soup, the idea of soup). Note the lack of an article makes it general.
J'aime la soupe. (all soup, the idea of soup). French requires an article. Absent anything else. la.
How can you tell which use is intended? Context.
Without any context, as this phrase is, you can't.
Why does Duo take the heart away if we can't be sure? I can't speak for Duo but I can tell you that the consequence of losing a heart for me was to spend a lot of time in the comments section reading explanations, following suggested links and doing my own research to arrive at my current understanding (for whatever that is worth).
Had Duo taken my use of la to be specific and thus included in the translation, as being correct I would have been that much longer before discovering that there is another widespread, different use of la/ le.
I agree! I get frustrated when I'm wrong because that's natural...most of us do, BUT the lesson in the end is completely worth the loss of a heart. Thank you for your comment.
I've noticed a certain pattern: when Duo offers me an alternative valid answer I suspect something and check the comments, because they only seem to do it when your answer is not the one they intended!
So because of Duo's pernickety nature, you understood the language better earlier?
French for your second case (sans article in English) would be de la soupe. The de makes it into the partitive case which is used for the general case.
What you say is correct in general but not in this case or those that are similar to it. You cannot use du/de la in direct connection to an appreciation verb. You can use du/de la with an action verb in conjunction with an appreciation verb but not when expressing only appreciation.
J'aime la soupe = correct
J'aime de la soupe = appreciation verb plus de la = incorrect.
J'aime boire de la soupe = correct
Thanks! The lightbulb has gone off! So for ex: manger de la soupe but aimer/adorer la soupe. What are some other common verbs that require only the definite article le/la/les when referring to the general case? Thank you.
Verbs that express appreciation.
I guess the French notion is that if you like/appreciate something, you either do or you don't. No, sort of like. If you want to quantify or limit your appreciation, you use a different construction. ....I like certain chocolates, I like particular wines...... Otherwise, you like them all or just the one you are talking about. General or specific but not du/de la/some.
Does the "la" here sound to anyone else like "les"? I mean it's obviously not "les" because no one says "I like soups," and in the slowed down version the "la" is very clear, but still. Sped up it sounds like "les".
The "a" sound is not very clear, but it's often the case when you talk quickly in French. As a native, I heard "la", even if it's pronunced softly.
At normal speed that's how it sounded to me. Of course since I was sure I heard it right the first time I didn't play it on slow, so I got it wrong. (would have either way... I kinda forgot to hit the 's' at the end... I failed all over that.)
Why can you drop the la in this sentence? My loving the soup that comes with the meal, la soupe is different from my loving soup in general soupe.
you can't drop the "la." for a general like of a thing, you always need the definite article. "j'aime la soupe" means "i like soup," in the most general sense of the word "soup." If you wanted to say you like the soup from this particular meal, you would say "j'aime cette soupe," meaning "i like this soup." all of the words in french referring to like/dislike (aimer, adorer, detester, etc.) require a definite article to express general like/dislike of a thing.
You're right. You can say "J'aime cette soupe", but if your mum made a special soup for you, and you say "Maman, j'aime la soupe", it would be easy to understand you don't talk about soup in general, but a particular soup, a definite one, your mum's soup. You won't say "J'ai aimé cette soupe" to your mother, but simply "J'ai aimé la soupe!" (implied: the soup you made this evening)
Thanks - a real-life example and what one would say at that point helps enormously.
Umm, why do you use 'J'ai' in your statement in the end here?
Sorry if the usage is really obvious, but so far I have learnt that 'J'ai' means 'I have'. Why does 'J'ai aimé la soupe! la soupe !' correspond to 'J'aimé la soupe!' here?
I'm sorry I didn't make self clear. I don't mean to drop the la from the French. I mean why does Duo drop the la when translating it to English.
Cette seems too specific for what I'm getting at. I like the Navy is different from I like this Navy. I'm surprised to read what you say when suggesting that when the French are asked if they want the salad or the soup they would respond with I want this soup even if they didn't know what the soup was.
Oh, Duo didn't drop the "la" for me, so maybe that's where I got confused.
No, I'm referring to the translation at the top of this page. Duo requires I love soup and rejects I love the soup. It's one thing to drop la from the title of a book or whatever because in English it wouldn't be there. But in this case la actually carries meaning.
Oh! Yes, in that case I agree with you, both translations should be acceptable...
What Northernguy said is now fixed. Both translations "I like the soup" and "I like soup" is accepted. It's fine, because it can have the two meaning in French, without a context.
Hi there - this same question has been answered many times in this discussion. Just read the comments above yours (only about 6 or 7 up. ThanKwee has explained it really well, with a very useful link to a comment by Remy. :)
I don't like the soup I love soup I need the soup so why is I love the soup not accepted
How do you know when j'aime is "to like" rather than "to love"? It seems as if it is both sometimes, but then it is incorrect at other times
I translated this as i love soup..im at level 3 and i thought aime was to love
This sentence is racist towards the other races of soup and the culture of the soup race. My left cousin is a soup, and was very displeased when the soup saw this question. I am very irate, along with my left cousin.
Hi kevin8m. I was thinking the exact same thing! wow! I love people that think like you! keep on Jammin!!!
I thought "j'aime" mean "I like" and "J'adore" meant "I love" but it accepted both for I like....
"J'aime" can be "I like" or "I love", depending on the context.
When you say "aimer" with a person, it's "to love" in general. J'aime ce garçon = I love this boy. When you use "aimer" with object, it's "to like". J'aime le chocolat = I like chocolate.
"Adorer" is another thing, it's always stronger than "aimer".
"Love" is too strong a word for describing appreciation for "soup" as concerns the verb "aimer". "Aimer" only means "love" when referring to people or pets . If you want to say that you love the soup, you would say "J'adore la soupe". See here for a thorough explanation. http://www.duolingo.com/comment/736970
i wrote i love soup. but i got it wrong. j'aime mean i love and i like. some one help
When i first learnt j'aime in the initial lessons, it meant i like/love... Howcome translating it as 'i love' here is incorrect?
Actually I just found the discussion - after a google search - it is two comments up from your post!! ThanKwee explained it clearly and posted a link to one of Remy's posts, which is also worth reading. It is always a good idea to read the whole comments section before posting a question, because often the question has been asked (and answered) before. You can always post a thank you or give an up-vote to the person who gave the answer so they know it has helped :)
This was on another forum somewhere - if I remember correctly, if they "love" the soup, they say j'adore la soupe, whereas with people, aimer can mean love....I think... I will try and find the other discussion and post a link here for you.
Hi - Have a look at the comments just a bit further up from your comment. ThanKwee has answered this with a link to some comments from Remy on this subject. It is a good idea to read the whole discussion before posting a question. It may well have been answered already :)
Yes, that's incorrect. The contraction is mandatory. Read here to learn more about contractions in French. http://french.about.com/library/pronunciation/bl-contractions.htm
its a contraction so that the sentance flows so it would be j'aime not je aime because j'aime flows smother with this sentance rather than je aime
Why when I put "I love the soup" does it translate wrong? The correct translation comes up as "I like." Why is this so?
I'm unsure why yours and Sabina Dobrin's comments were voted down. That's precisely the reason I went into comments. Because previously, in "J'aime le chat" it accepted "I love the cat" hence inconsistency in the programming here.
What is the difference between jaime and j'aime and how do you know to use one or the other?
It is hard to say the words je and aime close together without them running into each other. This is called a vowel collision, where the last letter of one word is a vowel which is then followed by a vowel as the first letter of the next word. To avoid the collision, some words are contracted by placing an apostrophe to show the deletion of the unnecessary vowel, much as it is done in English.
I am going to = I"m going to. The difference is that in French you must contract to avoid the collision. In English it is optional.
In this case it is:
Je aime = vowel collision which must be contracted
Je aime is contracted to J'aime
Jaime does not have the apostrophe and is incorrect.
English isn't (is not) has the apostrophe to show the deleted vowel.
isnt (is not) does not have the apostrophe and is incorrect.
Other words have the same vowel collision and use the apostrophe to join them together. Some other vowel collisions are handled in a different way because of special circumstances.
I had I typo. instead of writing 'I like the soup' I mistakenly wrote 'I lime the soup'. this should be a typo, right?
I have found that if the "typo word" exists in the target language, it is not usually marked as a typo, and you lose a heart. This is because DL has no way of knowing whether you actually think that aimer means to lime, as in lime the lawn in the summer, or lime the walls or catch something with birdlime etc.
If the word you type accidentally (with a typo) doesn't exist, then usually it will be counted as a typo and you won't lose a heart (eg perhaps if you had written I libe/lile the soup, it would have been a typo.
I thought that "J'aime la soupe." could translate to "I would like the soup." (I typed the contraction "I'd like the soup." Is this wrong, and if so can someone explain it?
If anyone does German, is that like the difference between "Ich mag ... (I like)" and "Ich möchte ... (I would like)"?
I like the soup = liking the soup as it is
I would like the soup =
- I like the soup when, under some circumstances that are not yet specified. Eg: I like the soup if it just had more salt.
2, I want the soup at a time not yet specified. Eg; I want the soup now.
My question is more based around the context of saying that you want something. Is it ok to say "J'aime le soupe." to indicate that you want the soup? I ask because you can do that in many languages.
Right. I see what you were getting at. In English, in the right context, saying that you like the soup is an indication that would like to have it. You are offered a choice, one of which is soup, and you respond with .....I like the soup.
That is a social custom type of speech for which I do not have the answer. It is a good question though! It seems likely that it would be true in French as well but maybe not. I hope a native French speaker can answer it.
Its weird how they say in the meaning bow for "aime" that it means both like and love, but when I put "i love the soup" , I get it wrong. Some one tell me why please.
is there a certain context I am missing in this phrase? Why wouldn't both be correct? Merci
The different uses of la/le/les and how they apply to this sentence have already been covered forty of fifty times on this page. If after reading those comments you are still unsure, then it would be good to raise the issues that confuse you about the translation.
I believe it's like Italian in that articles "generalize" the noun. So, it could mean "I Like the soup" Or "I Like soup," depending on context. Feel free to correct, guys.
I put I love the soup and Duolingo said it was wrong! I do get frustrated by it sometimes.
Please help, what is the difference between love and like in French. I'm not sure if I was incorrect, but I thought j'aime meant love, but my answer was incorrect.
I accidentally wrote down "I like soupe" (without a pronoun) and it said it was correct. Is that true?
Shouldnt it be j'adore la soup since you are not speaking about a person?
But what if "I" like the SANDWICH M_O_R_E?!?!? Would that matter? I think this is a very opinionated question! Anyone else? Why is the CORRECT ANSWER: "J'aime la soupe" (English: I like soup) and why is "J'aime la sandwich" WRONG or INCORRECT????? Please help!!! -Thanks and Hope to hear from s_o_m_e_o_n_e soon!!
J'aime la soup and la baguette have the same la before it (it should be more specific
aime is the verb to like or to love, could be translated as I love the soup
How do you spell love in French because I thought it was I love soup not I like soup
Why is "I love soup" unacceptable... Earlier they corrected me when I said "like" and told me it should be "love", but now when I use "love", they correct me... I'm confused
aimer with inanimate objects = like/enjoy
aimer with people = love
aimer bien with people = like
When do we use like and when do we use love since both of them mean the same in french
why is j'aime i like in this context because on one other exercise it said jaime was i love?
Wow. The dates must be awkward... "So your a cheerleader?" "....." And the weddings.. "I do!" "...." "You may kiss the bride." "How?"