Translation:It is necessary that his friend is informed of it.
so why is this chapter" past subjuctive", what is the difference between the "present subjuctive"?
True, there doesn't seem to be any past tense in this one, unless you count the past participle "informé" (which is being used in the present).
I think putting in a few sentences in the present passive subjunctive here in the past subjunctive section was a good idea. That helps us distinguish between the two.
I think mixing it in under the heading "past subjunctive" without any further explanation might decrease the distinction between the two more than anything.
I must agree with smearedink. I'm all for mixing it up but only after one has had a chance to see the tense demonstrated correctly. Perhaps there should be two Subjunctive Past lessons (groan!): the first containing only good examples of legitimate Subjonctif passé sentences and the second with some diversity of Present Subjunctive and other "distractors".
I groan too, 4 years later, but I think it IS confusing to put them together. Seeing the past subjunctive, I was taught that it refers to a time previous to the main clause. If the main clause is present, then the past subjunctive should translate as "has"; if the main clause is past, the past subjunctive should translate as "had," to place it in time as previous to the main clause. But those passive constructions are confusing, if not also explicitly taught, since they look so much like the active constructions, but are really occurring simultaneous with the main clause.
Evelim, you are right. There is no "past subjunctive" in that French sentence. Another English equivalent, which Duolingo should add if they have not already, is: "It is necessary that his friend be informed of it" or even "His friend has to be informed."--Larry Porter
This is one place where the English subjunctive still exists (though underutilized) and would be preferable -- ". . .that his friend be informed of it."
Yes, and it would be better to use that form here, as this stage is about the subjunctive.
I just put "his friend be informed." I feel as if saying "of it" on the end is sort of optional, and that it's not required for the sentence to make sense.
The idea is that you need to translate "en" (of it), otherwise, the sentence becomes "il faut que son ami soit informé" and you don't know "of what".
Yet the following (in my opinion incomplete) translation was accepted: "it is needed that his friend be informed"
This is one of the few places where English still sometimes uses the old subjunctive -- ". . .that his friend be informed of it."
Nice English adaptation... that Duo was not expecting, apparently (word for word for you to get familiar with the structure)
I think that's probably the best English translation, and "should" often indicates the subjunctive in English, so it should (subjunctive!) be accepted.
I put 'Her friend has to be informed of it'
Why would this be incorrect and why is Duo highlighting 'Her' and wanting it to be 'Him'?
Doesn't informer have "avoir" as it's auxiliary verb instead of "etre"? In that case, this sentence should be wrong.
you are right but this is the passive form:
active : son ami m'avait informé passive : son ami était informé
From Sitesurf's post:
-active: his friend has informed me
-passive: his friend has been informed
Conveniently, passive tends to use "to be" as an auxiliary verb in both English and French.
I used "for" instead of "that", and it was judged incorrect. I don't agree, I think that in English it could be either
but 'for' would require a different structure than 'that'...(...for his friend to be informed of it)
French is trickier than I'd thought, and I've given myself 9 months to learn the necessary basics (by 22nd Nov 2013), please kindly help: If the friend was a girl, the sentence would have to read: Il faut que son amie en soit informee. Correct?
That looks right to me (except for the missing accent of course), but I am not an authority. However, since the auxiliary verb in the subjunctive is être, the past participle must agree with the subject, which is son amie here, a feminine noun. So informée would appear to be the correct participle to use.
Also, since I've decided to lay claim to 100% of Sitesurf's "well done", I'll take it upon myself to pass one along to AnnaTall: well done, AnnaTall!
Earlier responses don’t make it clear to me: if you were translating “It is necessary that her friend is informed.” into French, would you need to include the “en”? If so, the English sentence without “of it” should be accepted.
"en" indeed stands for "of it". so if the English is ... that her friend is informed, the French becomes ... que son ami(e) soit informé(e)
Duo suggested "His friend must be posted about it.". That sounds like poor English to me. We say "keep me posted about it" but not " I must be posted about it"
Why is "soit informe" translated as "...is informed" rather than "...was informed"?
Il faut que son ami en ait été informé. or Il faut que son ami en fût informé.
but then il faut might need to be il fallait.
= It was necessary that his friend was informed about it
You are NOT the last English speaker to know that is the correct translation! Thank you for your post. We speak probably dated, but correct English....