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"Quand mes parents vous disaient-ils ça?"

Translation:When did my parents tell you that?

January 27, 2013

12 Comments


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

what does "ils" refer to here? the "parents" or "that"?


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

'ils' means 'they'. The phrase 'ils disaient' (they said) is inverted here, because the sentence is a question, to form 'disaient-ils'. 'Vous' placed before the verb ('disaient') means 'to you'. 'Ça' means that. So piecing it all together LITERALLY makes "when my parents to you said-they that?', or 'when did my parents tell you that?


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

isn't "ils" kind of redundant if "mes parents" is mentioned already?


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

It indeed looks redundant vs the English construction, but that is the rule.


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

there is another form to avoid redundancy: "quand est-ce que mes parents vous disaient ça ?" (pls note there is a T liaison between 'quand' and 'est-ce')


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

It's often used for emphasis, to make sure he knows about MY PARENTS saying things... http://french.about.com/od/pronunciation/a/tonicaccent.htm


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

"Quand" should be said with a nasal sound and sounds more like "comment" here especially the slower version and both are equally likely to be said


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

Just lost a heart because they didn't accept "When did my relatives tell you this?", Marked "relatives" as wrong, even though that's in the possible translations.


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

In French, "mes parents" are Mom and Dad.

"parents" as "relatives" is without possessive adjective.

See the parallel with "la fille" = the girl and "ma fille" = my daughter


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

Aha, that's interesting! Thanks!

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