1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: French
  4. >
  5. "Cette paire de lunettes est …

"Cette paire de lunettes est magnifique."

Translation:This pair of glasses is magnificent.

February 14, 2013

24 Comments


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

In English eyeglasses equals glasses and should be acceptable here.


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

OK, folks. I think this is a case of British vs. North American English.

In North America, "a pair" takes a singular noun, as do nouns like "army", "council", "government", etc., which, while singular, imply numbers of individuals. In Britain (or at least in England), one hears, "The council are prepared to vote," or, "The regiment are moving to a new location", while in North America, the verbs would be singular.

I don't know this for sure, but I'm willing to guess, given the "In English we would never say..." remarks above, that this same principle applies to "pair".

One of the first things I learned here on DL, is to be cautious about what one would "never say in English".


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

Plural can be used in British English if referring to a pair of people, but not if referring to a pair of glasses. http://oald8.oxfordlearnersdictionaries.com/dictionary/pair http://public.wsu.edu/~brians/errors/pair.html

There is a pair of glasses on the mantelpiece.” “Pair” is singular in this sort of expression. Note that we say “that is a nice pair of pants” even though we also say “those are nice pants.”

http://www.collinsdictionary.com/dictionary/English/pair

Like other collective nouns, pair takes a singular or a plural verb according to whether it is seen as a unit or as a collection of two things: the pair are said to dislike each other; a pair of good shoes is essential


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

In Canada (at least my area of the country) pair is counted as plural


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jackie115620

Er, I'm British and I would say 'The regiment is', 'The council is', etc. More difficult is 'The staff is' as this is often rendered 'The staff are'.


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

I think this one's a toughy. I agree technically a pair of glasses is singular, but it still sounds wrong to say my pair of glasses is thin framed. I think, perhaps because we only occasionally say a pair of glasses - more commonly just glasses - it sounds natural to always refer to them and not it.


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

One for the pedants I think. Whilst you can debate the correctness of "the pair is/are", in the real world in my corner of the UK you would sound mighty odd using "is" in this case. Having said that I'm happy to know that the French do use "is". So moving on...


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

Everyone's focused on "is" versus "are". I'd say it's more important to note that in most cases you would simply say "these glasses", which would definitely be plural. You would only say "pair of glasses" to quantify them:

"I only have one pair of glasses." "There are three pairs of glasses on the table."

But to refer to a particular pair you would just say "These glasses are magnificent."


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

why de lunettes and not des lunettes?


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

pair de is an expression of quantity, never a definite article after it


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

What is wrong with 'spectacles'?


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

I agree. .should be are not is!


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

Why did I lose a heart for 'spectacles'?


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

Probably because the program is U.S.-based. They've done a pretty good job of accommodating differences (colour/color, kilometer/kilometre, etc., but they often miss actual terms: trash can, but not dustbin etc.

Perhaps one of the weirdest accommodations is "Brit" for a British citizen. I'm not sure if they accept "Yank' for an American citizen, "Canuck" for a Canadian, "Aussie" for Australian, etc. :)

Meanwhile, I hope your spectacles are magnificent, or august or even epic...


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

Are you sure? In this same unit they give a length as "one metre ten", which is a distinctly British construction.


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

Yes, you're right. Sometimes the constructions are neither American nor British and occasionally the translations seem to be created by someone whose first language may not be English. So—point taken.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sarah-Cheung

There is a mistake in the pronunciation. The last s in lunettes should be pronounced in the fast version.

I've typed lunettes in, but deleted the s with some doubt after I carefully listened to the record once again.

Please fix it. Thanks!


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

my pants are tight


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

my pair of pants is tight


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/aamirza216

I don't know... I would say "my pair of pants are tight", "these pair of pants are tight". Maybe the dictionary says it's wrong, but I think a language is a living, changing thing, and it's quite evident that "(these) pair of ____ are" is a common way to say the phrase, at least in Commonwealth English.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/pokeballx21

I typed magnificant by accident.


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

In the previous question "gorgeous" was translated as "magnifique." Here "magnifique" is translated as "magnificent" and "gorgeous" is marked wrong. Pourquoi?


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

The grammer is incorrect. British English should take presidence

Learn French in just 5 minutes a day. For free.