"Je suis née là."
Translation:I was born here.
Just how language works sometimes. Common usage seems to have made the word somewhat of an enantiosemy (énantiosémie) like apprendre which can mean "to teach" and "to learn".
In English, we have auto-antonyms (a.k.a contranyms) too: when you remove dirt particles from furniture you are said to be dusting; yet when you add sugar particles to some pastry by sprinkling it on, that too is dusting. Another example on a contronym (alternate spelling): in the US, a bill is both an invoice that has to be paid and a monetary note that can be used to make payments.
Isn't language fun?
I'm pretty sure I saw "Je suis né something" right before this card. What's the difference between né and née? Masculin and feminine?
Yes, the difference is gender. A man or boy would say "je suis né..." and a woman or girl would say "je suis née...".
Do all of these conjugations end in -é or -ée? Is there a difference in pronounciation?
I think that in English, "to be born" is a one-time event, hence the use of simple past "was born"
Haha, right, unless you are 'born again'... Thanks Sitesurf, I know I can always count on you!
I do not understand what makes this a past tense , is it the fact that the "suis " is in front of the nee or what my verb tales only give "suis" as a present tense, why not j'ai ete??
There are 2 answers to your question.
French grammar: "naître" and "mourir" are "être" verbs and their respective past participles are also adjectives.
- je suis né(e) = "être" in present + adjective "né(e)"
- je suis né(e) = "naître" in compound past: "suis" is the auxiliary conjugated in present and "né(e)" is the past participle.
With the same characteristics:
- ils sont morts = they are dead
- ils sont morts = they died
In English "to be born" and "to die" are working differently:
- he was born in 2002 = il est né en 2002
- he is born alive = il est né vivant
- he died in 2002 = il est mort en 2002
- he is dead now = il est mort maintenant
Sorry for being a bit thick, but why isn't it 'naquis' for the past tense please?
"Je naquis" is in passé simple, a tense that Duolingo does not teach because it has become rare and it is practically never used in speech.
It has to do with the list of (so-called) verbs of movement, which include "monter" (to go up), descendre (to go down), tomber (to fall), naitre (to be born), and mourir (to die). These all take être as the auxiliary verb in compound tenses. So it may take continued exposure to this to recognize it as a past tense. https://www.thoughtco.com/etre-verbs-french-auxiliary-verbs-1368843
Doesn't this mean "i am born there" like in English present passive tense? and shouldn't it be "j'étais née là" for "i was born there"?
No, these expressions do not match in terms of tenses from one language to the other.
Hi sitesurf. Just realised you're a moderator now. Hope they reward you for all your hard work. I was just wondering would "j'étais née là" sound strange to a French speaker and if not what would it mean?
J'étais né(e) là would be used in a relative clause following a main clause in past tense (so as to respect the time sequence):
- je lui dis que je suis né(e) là (present)
- je lui ai dit que j'étais né(e) là.
Why would DL have a man's voice read the sentence for a "type what you heard" exercise, and then correct me when i enter «Je suis nè là» telling me I was almost right but that what I really heard him saying was «Je suis nèe là»? Is the earlier comment by mere_des_chats wrong? Do men really write «Je suis nèe» in France? If not, should DL not use a woman's voice for this sentence?
The voices here just speak out the sentences we write for them. For the same sentence, you can get the man's or the woman's voice, it's random.
In that case, how would I have known that «Je suis nè là» was only "almost right" and that I was really expected to give «Je suis nèe là»? Is there really an audible difference between the two?
"né" and "née" are perfect homophones.
In such a case, Duolingo applies a specific filter to enable both translations, because we (mods) cannot enter a translation as correct if it does not match the written version of the original sentence.
This sentence was duly reported as a homophone a long time ago, and it is now supposed to benefit from the filter. If it is not working, please let me know and I'll report it again.
I am glad to hear that the two versions are homophones, as I have always understood them to be.
I can send you the screen shot that I took if you really need it, but no, it's not working as you expected it to. As I reported in the original post, DL told me that the masculine version was "almost right," and that I should have entered the feminine version.
Just wanted to mention that sometimes if you post something Duo was not expecting, it gets thrown off and ends up pointing out the wrong thing as the mistake. Could it be that the accent grave instead of accent aigu on the "e" threw it off?
@Sitesurf - The mistake is mine, as confirmed by taking a magnifying glass to my screen shot. The resolution is so tiny that my old eyes were unable to distinguish between the options for an e with an accent and I clicked on an accent grave when I thought I was clicking on a accent aigu (and the mistake was propagated by copy and paste into the discussion posts). Apologies for the confusion (and thanks to mere_des_chats for picking up on the discrepancy): nothing to fix on your end. I can only imagine the challenges facing optical character recognition programmers trying to make software distinguish between these tiny marks. :-)
I think there is a misspelling in the options. The text correctly says 'born there' but the option card says 'here'.
There is no misspelling, but "là" is often used to mean "ici" in French.
Therefore "né là" can be translated to "born here" or "born there".
If you use Google Images and look up passé composé, you will find several fun and helpful diagrams on which verbs take "être." I like the mountain myself. Good luck!
The exercises you are doing are on passé composé. Before starting a section on the Duolingo tree, it helps to access the site on a computer so you can read the Tips and Notes which introduce the subject covered by the exercises you're about to start. There you would have learned about this usage of the verb être to refer to something that happened in the past. Here is a link to those Tips (You will need to scroll down past the lessons to read them): https://www.duolingo.com/skill/fr/Verbs%3A-Compound-Past.
Oh mon dieu !! I just realized that the French consider "ici" to be masculine and "là" to be feminine! Is there a native that can share in this epiphany or bust it?