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boit-il vs il boit

boit-il vs il boit - what's the difference? It seems always to be boit-il, but what's wrong with il boit? Thanks!

June 11, 2012



One is a question (Boit-il du vin ?; Does he drink wine?), the other is a statement (Il boit du vin.; He drinks wine.). This method of asking a question is known as inversion, and is considered to be more formal than the more commonly spoken "Est-ce qu'il boit du vin?" (Is it that he drinks wine?)


As long as you place a question mark at the end of the sentence "il boit du vin?" it is still a grammatically correct question. The context of the question is different however, as a question that follows that example would indicate great amazement, kinda like writing "il boit du vin?!?!?!?!?!". Sort of like you cannot believe he is drinking wine. Where as "boit-il du vin?", is you just being curious and wanting to find out if he drinks wine or not. Hope this helps, cheers!


When making questions in French we have to change the structure a bit, hence the boit-it? (an other form of question would be estce qu'il boit.) So the only time you use boit-il is in a question but a question could have il boit

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