https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Craig-Humps

Relative pronoun: qui

I understand that the relative pronoun qui is used to refer to the subject, however, I'm a little confused by the following:

J'habite dans un appartement qui est assez bruyant. (I live in an apartment which is quite noisy.)

My grammer knowledge is a little rusty, but as far as I can tell, the subject here is Je (I) and dans un appartement (in an apartment) is a prepositional phrase and qui appears to refer to the object of the preposition: un appartement. So in essence we get.

J'habite dans un appartement. L'appartement est assez bruyant (I live in an apartment. The apartment is quite noisy).

So, becuase l'appartement is the subject of the second sentence we use qui to refer to it . Is this the correct analysis of the phrase?

Also, if I wanted to use a relative pronoun to refer to the entire phrase would I use lequel instead. So, is:

I live in an apartment, which is quite noisy (I live in an apartment. Living in an apartment is quite noisy)

equivalent to:

J'habite dans un appartement lequel est assez bruyant

Thanks for any help

May 15, 2016

8 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jrikhal

qui is used to refer to the subject

The rule is: qui is the relative pronoun to use when the relative pronoun is the subject of the subordinate clause.

So

So, becuase l'appartement is the subject of the second sentence we use qui to refer to it . Is this the correct analysis of the phrase?

Yes, that's why it's "J'habite dans un appartement qui est assez bruyant.". Because, as you showed in

J'habite dans un appartement. L'appartement est assez bruyant (I live in an apartment. The apartment is quite noisy).

the subject of "est assez bruyant" is the relative pronoun (which refers to the "appartement").

I live in an apartment, which is quite noisy (I live in an apartment. Living in an apartment is quite noisy)

-> Je vis dans un appartement, ce qui est assez bruyant.
But this sounds a little strange in FR because "living" in itself can't really be "bruyant". the place where you live can be "bruyant", but the concept of living in itself doesn't.

May 15, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Craig-Humps

Thanks a lot for the explanation. It's totally clear now.

May 18, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/aistobe

I think you can say L'appartement dans lequel j'habite... est assez bruyant.

But in the example L'appartement est assez bruyant is a dependant clause and would use qui.

EDIT: sorry for all the edits. I'm just having my coffee, now.

May 15, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kangourex

Yes he can. :)

May 15, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Craig-Humps

Ah, that makes sense. After having a re-read of some articles, lequel comes after the preposition (not the prepositional phrase) so I can't just replace qui with lequel, but need to reconstruct the sentence in the way you have. :)

May 15, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/hivemindx

I think your analysis is correct. The rule of thumb I use is that if the pronoun is followed immediately by a conjugated verb (which probably means it's the subject) then use "qui" otherwise use "que". So it would always be "qui est" in this type of sentence.

I think your second sentence using "lequel" is definitely correct if it were two separate sentences. It might still be grammatically correct but it looks funny to me as one single sentence.

May 15, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Craig-Humps

Thanks for the response, I like to understand why things are constructed the way they are, but it's much more practical to get a real feel for the correct construction, so your explanation really helps.

May 15, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kangourex

"J'habite dans un appartement lequel est assez bruyant" is not French.

"J'habite dans appartement qui est assez bruyant" To know the subject, "qui est assez bruyant ?" "L'appartement".

"L'appartement dans lequel j'habite est assez bruyant"

"L'appartement où j'habite est assez bruyant"

If it was "you" the subject :

  • "J'habite dans un appartement et je suis assez bruyant" "Qui est assez bruyant ?" "Je"

  • "J'habite et suis assez bruyant dans un appartement"

May 15, 2016
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