"Je bois du lait."

Translation:I drink milk.

February 2, 2013

71 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/dena_hawkins

why is it du and not de

December 22, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
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"je bois du lait" means I am drinking some milk, ie an undefined quantity of something I cannot count.

In French, there is a specific construction for that: preposition "de" + definite article "le/la"

-masculine: du lait (contraction of de+le)

-feminine: de la soupe

-masculine: de l'alcool (elision of "le" because alcool starts with a vowel)

  • feminine: de l'eau (elision "la" because eau starts with a vowel)
December 22, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/KhamariCotton

I LOVE YA

April 29, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/KhamariCotton

Sitesurf I love ya

April 29, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Susan836179

Me too i love ya Sitesurf

July 12, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Maitreyee.K

explained very nicely

October 30, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/ice71784

Man , it was struggling with this , thank you

July 22, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/soheyl.moheb

thanks, it helped a lot ;-)

November 26, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/visheshvvs

ThankYou

June 25, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/keem109302

Thank you

February 25, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/AymanMouhc

Thank u

January 26, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE
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"de" is simply a particle meaning "of", or "from", it's not the use there.

You have to put the partitive article, and it's always de+ definite article.

There's an exception with "du" (because it's the contraction of de+le) and with "des" (because it's the contraction of de+les)

Remember: "de" alone is a particle, not an article, to mean the partitive article, you need the whole block "de"+definite article, or the contracted forms.

May 26, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
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"de" is a preposition (like "pour", "à", "sans"...) to link elements of a sentence together.

"de" is called "a particle" (une particule) when used in aristocrats' family names: Edmond de Rothschild, for example (= Van in Dutch and Von in German).

July 9, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/Rysid

you're always so helpful! thanks! PS heres a lingot

July 8, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/KhamariCotton

I eat milk xD XD

April 29, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/so_normal

In filling the blank in "Je bois __ lait: wouldn't it also be correct to say "I drink the milk/ Je bois le lait" as well as using "du lait"? Aren't both technically correct?"

April 29, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
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Did you really get a "fill-in the blank" exercise with "je bois ___ lait"?

April 29, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/so_normal

Yup. It was a bit confusing when it marked me wrong.

April 29, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Whitney435982

Yeah i did too

April 29, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/NellaLaBella

Why is "je bois le lait" incorrect? "I drink the milk in the morning" is proper grammar. All this time they make us say irregular stuff like "she eat the apple" no "s" yet I drink the milk is wrong? Hmmm

May 19, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/ricathyjoyce

i wrote i drink milk but should it be i drink some milk

January 7, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE
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Yes. "I drink some milk" or "I drink milk", both mean an indefinite quantity of milk, and have the same French translation = "Je bois du lait".

The "some" is optional in English, but it can help you to translate the French partitive, de la, du, des, etc...

May 26, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/SamishiiKaku
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'du' is 'some' when placed in front of 'of the'

April 19, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE
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"Du" is some each time you mean an indefinite quantity (nothing to do with "of the", because it's not the way it has to translate)

May 26, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE
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The pronounciation of "lait" here is wrong. It has to sound like a "è" and not a "è".

http://fr.forvo.com/word/lait/
The right pronounciation is /lɛ/ and not /le/. I'll report.

May 26, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/deniscastellas

No change thus far.

December 13, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/AhmedDoha

why "i am drinking the milk" wrong

May 7, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/AnnaShamsili

What is the difference between du and de la?

December 23, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/Serenmyst

Du is masculine. De la is feminine

February 20, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE
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Yes. Because "du" is indeed the mandatory contraction of "de"+"le", so it's masculine.

May 26, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/kellyrahardjaa

Why not du le lait?

May 29, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
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"du" already means "de le" (which is not used for phonetic reasons).

May 30, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/Tigeroic
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"I drink the milk" ? It's not correct.

June 3, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/TerriWanji

It asked me to fill in the blank and I said je bois le lait. Instead of du lait. How is that wrong? I drink the milk.

April 25, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/savannahsally

i got it spelled right, i just forgot to put a space in between de and lait. oops :)

October 8, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/LottieFountain

I put mil instead of milk by accident and it didn't say typo it said wonrg

March 27, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Autumn-Palace

Agreed!

April 24, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/pinkydec28

What does 'du' mean? And when should we use it?

August 8, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Brayden

I drink children xD

August 25, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/alphabet03

Can someone give me a 13 year olds answer for when to use du, de, etc? I dont know what definitive articles, particles, etc are. It would truly help me a lot if someone could explain all these things to me in a way I can understand it.

March 6, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
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Have you read the Tips and Notes in the lesson?

March 7, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/toffee1141

Could it also mean 'I am drinking the milk'?

March 12, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
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the milk = le lait

Whenever the English sentence has "the", the French sentence will use "le", "la", "l' " or "les" depending on the noun used:

  • the milk = le lait (masculine singular)
  • the beer = la bière (feminine singular)
  • the water = l'eau (feminine singular, noun starting with a vowel sound)
  • the alcohol = l'alcool (masculine singular, noun starting with a vowel sound)
  • the drinks and the glasses = les boissons (feminine plural) et les verres (masculine plural)
March 13, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/toffee1141

Thank you!

March 21, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/NoOneLovesMe

I was tired and put I am drinking coffee which is true.

March 23, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/NoOneLovesMe

True but wrong. Lol Je bois de la cafe. :)

March 23, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/grolix

This is a past tense and it should be drank not drink.

April 11, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
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No, it is not a past tense.

Past tenses would be, for example:

  • j'ai bu (compound past)
  • je buvais (imperfect)
  • j'avais bu (pluperfect)
April 11, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Avivah4

PERCE_NIEG and Sitesurf, you are SO HELPFUL!!! : )

June 4, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Bhouse113

Why is "Je bois le lait" incorrect?

July 30, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
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"le" is the translation for "the".

"du" is a partitive article that is required when the English meaning is "some" in front of a masculine mass noun.

August 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/a_bikas96

De+ le =du

August 24, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Ruthienan

I drink = bois; he drinks = boit?

February 2, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
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je bois, tu bois, il/elle/on boit, nous buvons, vous buvez, ils/elles boivent

February 2, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/Lechuza-chouette
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"I am having milk" sounds close enough to me. Unless the speaker is Cleopatra and her "bains de lait d'ânesse".

June 11, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE
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Yes. The translation "drinking milk" can be "having milk" in English, since this expression mean "to drink", but in French, "having" is only to own, so it's easier and maybe more simple to translate "boire" with "drink", but it's correct.

May 26, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/pleiadian_

So what would "Je bois lait." mean - that I drink milk in general? Or is that incorrect grammar?

October 12, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
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"je bois lait" is incorrect because you need an article of some kind: either "le lait" (definite) or "du lait" (partitive)

October 12, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE
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You always have to put article in French. Here, the partitive is to mean you have an indefinite quantity of milk ("du")

May 26, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/tiamckinney1

I believe that that is incorrect grammer but I could definitely be wrong Sooo...

February 6, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/PERCE_NEIGE
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No, you're right. Always put an article in French before nouns.

May 26, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/Avivah4

If this helps, your welcome. If any of you know Spanish, then you'll see that French sounds like Spanish

June 4, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Tatyana841142

what is it then

June 10, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/HadiHarese

Why is (du) Not (le) ?

August 6, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
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"le lait" is like "the milk": specific, for something already mentioned or on the table at the time you speak.

"du lait" is partitive, which means that "some milk" is considered, in an undetermined quantity or a mass thing.

August 7, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/binty2

I did not understand it

August 10, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/paulineemm2

Thanks @sitesurf...

September 12, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/chevremignonne

Why is "je bois le lait" wrong if i happen to be talking about me generally drinking milk? Wouldn't "le" be used as opposed to "du"?

October 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
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To move from "je bois du lait" to "je bois le lait", you would need some more context, like: "je bois le lait comme la bière, dans un verre".

October 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/chevremignonne

So if i were to ask someone if they drink milk generally, its still "du"?

October 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
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Yes, because every time you do, it is still "some milk" as an "unknow amount of a mass thing".

October 29, 2017
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