"Il aime les travaux dans le jardin."

Translation:He likes working in the garden.

2/15/2013, 8:30:45 AM

45 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/djbrubacher

This is a SERIOUSLY bad question. I am completely and totally confused, even after your explanation Sitesurf - and that's unusual. I'm a educator and this question should go - it causes far more confusion that anything else. I'm just going to pretend I didn't see it.

8/20/2013, 7:05:21 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/id416

I respectfully disagree. I think these tough questions that really compel you to check the comments for Sitesurf (and others') explanations (even if duo has merely made a mistake) are the best way to actually get full understanding. You won't learn from just passing a bunch of easy and non-controversial exercises. Struggling is the way the brain grows.

9/23/2014, 9:14:29 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/simpy3
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The easiest way to look at this statement is to remember travaux is a noun linked to the verb, travailler. Once you remember that, les travaux and similar constructs are easy to understand.

10/27/2014, 10:51:47 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/Ronnie-JA

I don't what your comment adds to the overall thread as its already been discussed that the meaning of les travaux (in Eng) is what's debatable. So what's your translation?

10/28/2014, 2:36:30 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/simpy3
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I always remember it as it is, "the works".

Then I refer back to English, where we call an author or poet's writing "a work" which becomes collectively known as "the works" when talking about multiple pieces (e.g. The works of Shakespeare.)

10/28/2014, 3:13:49 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/Ronnie-JA

Exactly. Except, the given solution is "He likes working in the garden." The difficulty here is in finding an English translation which works within the confines of this phrase. But then, if you've already read through this thread, you'll see these points are already well covered.

10/28/2014, 3:30:35 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/simpy3
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That's translation I'm afraid.

It's temperamental.

10/28/2014, 3:35:56 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/anaparastasis

"Then I refer back to English, where we call an author or poet's writing "a work" which becomes collectively known as "the works" when talking about multiple pieces (e.g. The works of Shakespeare.)"

That's a different kind of "works", though, isn't it? That would be œuvres in French, I think.

10/29/2014, 5:59:32 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/simpy3
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I'm talking in terms of English, not French.

But yes, une œuvre in French is usually applied to any creative works (writing, art etc). Un œuvre though, is a deed.

10/29/2014, 10:13:39 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/Ronnie-JA

In English there's no distinction. In French, Oeuvre is much more specific, but I don't see why les travaux couldn't have this type of connotation.

Here's a link to a few examples of both (and others).

10/29/2014, 7:43:55 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/anaparastasis

@Ronnie-M, I'm talking about a distinction in French (between "travaux" and "œuvres"). In French I've only seen "œuvres" used to talk about the body of work of a writer, never "travaux". I'm certainly far from an expert in French though, so perhaps an expert/native speaker could clarify?

10/29/2014, 4:48:48 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/Ronnie-JA

@anaparastasis - Yes, I understood what you mean that's why I made the distinction. Did you look at the link I posted? (Actually, Linguee isn't displaying the link correctly). Here are examples:

"...whether the works at issue in the main proceedings were to be subject to an environmental impact assessment."

"...que les autorités compétentes ont correctement apprécié si les travaux en cause dans le litige au principal devaient"

Or

"The works submitted for publication are not taken into account."

"Les travaux soumis pour publication ne sont pas pris en considération."

Contrast

"...student titles currently in the works."

"... les ouvrages pour les étudiants actuellement en préparation."

And

"Behold this world: arrogant, defiant, and proud of the works of man that astonish the generations of this century."

"Observez ce monde, hautain, provocateur, et orgueilleux de toutes les œuvres des hommes par lesquelles ils ahurissent les générations de ce siècle."

There are more examples where the uses cross over in French but where it is most specific about "works" referring to works of art, les oeuvres is preferred, but not in all cases.

10/29/2014, 11:55:49 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/homunkoloss
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When is travail used in plural? Is there a rule? Or is "les travaux dans le jardin" idiomatic and can be considered an exception?

2/15/2013, 8:30:45 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/sedy

why is "he likes jobs in the garden" unacceptable? To me, it sounds better than "he likes works in the garden"--which IS acceptable.

6/2/2013, 1:25:09 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/natanta

What about "he likes tasks in the garden"?

8/26/2013, 1:15:25 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/kappadappa

I put [what I thought was] the correct answer "He likes working in the garden" and got marked wrong and told the correct answer was "He likes works in the garden". App failure. Grrrr...

4/17/2015, 5:46:54 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
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he likes working in the garden = il aime travailler dans le jardin: it means that he is doing the work himself.

il aime les travaux dans le jardin = he likes the works (done) in the garden: we don't know who is doing (did) the work.

4/18/2015, 11:02:33 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/kappadappa

Thanks. I was confused when I came to this conversation thread because yesterday the translation at the top of this page matched what I had written, "He likes working..." so I thought that was correct. Today it says, "He likes the works..." I don't know if it was just a glitch on my phone or something, but it makes sense now.

4/18/2015, 1:19:37 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
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You know, we make changes everyday in the course. So, up-dates may be more or less quick to appear. I assume your phone is fine!

4/18/2015, 1:28:55 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/juanitotravels

Hi Sitesurf, I would urge you to remove "He likes the works in the garden." as a correct solution -- a native speaker of English would ask the speaker of that sentence to clarify his meaning. There are works of art, works of literature, and in a garden maybe even works of floral and shrubbery arrangements. But when it refers to labor, "work" stays singular; it is kind of a collective noun. After a month away from home, you could say there are many jobs or tasks, but you would have a lot of work to do in your garden.

7/7/2015, 9:31:41 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/juanitotravels

First, what I meant by "work" is a collective noun is that in the singular form, it can refer to more than one thing. "Travaux" is plural and refers to more than one thing, but that "pluralness" (for lack of a better word) should not be carried over to English in this case.

Second, to respond to your examples: in English, we don't say "renovation works", we use the singular: "There is a lot of renovation work being done on my house, both the kitchen and the bathroom will have new floors." We don't say "road works", we say, "There is road work on Main Street at both 1st Avenue and 5th Avenue." We do say "men at work", not "men at works" (your example is correct there).

"He likes the works in the garden." is simply not something a native speaker of English would say if he meant "travaux".

7/8/2015, 9:14:11 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
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"les travaux" is collective as well, and it has its own meanings:

  • je fais des travaux chez moi = renovation works
  • il y a des travaux sur la route = road works
  • sign: "attention, travaux" = "men at work"
  • travaux de terrassement = earthworks

"les travaux dans le jardin/the works in the garden" can be about putting in a swimming pool. The man (he) may like what is being done by workers in his garden, or he may like digging foundations or building his own tool shed.

Again, "les travaux" have nothing to do with art (les oeuvres/les sculptures) in that context, and "he" may or may not be the one working.

I can agree that this sentence is difficult, but it is not wrong to illustrate what "les travaux" can mean in French.

7/8/2015, 8:50:29 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
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This is what I found in my dictionary:

works
plural noun
1. [mechanism] mécanisme m, rouages mpl [of clock] mouvement m
to foul up OR to gum up the works (informal) tout foutre en l'air
2. civil engineering [construction] travaux mpl [installation] installations fpl
road works travaux
Minister/Ministry of Works ministre m /ministère m des Travaux publics

What do you think? is it a British thing?

7/9/2015, 11:44:57 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/juanitotravels

Ah, yes, it could be a British thing, I had not considered that at all. "Gum up the works" is used in the US, but as your dictionary indicates, it is quite informal (perhaps even idiomatic).

7/13/2015, 1:09:39 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/Mr_Philip

why doesn't "he likes garden jobs" work

6/19/2015, 3:33:20 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/votears
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Which one is better "He likes the works in the garden" or the given answer "He likes working in a garden" in this case

5/7/2013, 8:29:49 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/JamesB84
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I spoke to a coworker whose native language is French and he said that "He likes working in the garden" is an acceptable translation for the sentence. He said technically that it is "He likes the works in the garden" but in English it makes more sense to say the prior.

8/20/2013, 7:54:34 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/AndreiBurlacu

why doesn't "labours" fit in the equation?

2/1/2014, 1:52:39 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
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In my opinion, "labours" suggests heavy-duty plowing, not really what you do in a garden but in a big field.

2/1/2014, 6:26:35 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/TimBliss

I read 'les travaux' as art works - eg sculptures, so translated it as 'he likes the works in the garden' - which was accepted

2/24/2014, 11:59:51 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
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sculptures are generally not referred to as "des travaux", but "des oeuvres".

2/24/2014, 3:38:54 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/DawnHebert

I don't understand why"les travaux" is plural.

3/30/2014, 2:01:14 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/MitchQuinn

Les travaux translates to 'the works'; It is plural of le travail (the work).

I tend to think of it in a not-so-literal sense, such as: the jobs/chores/activites/tasks (all work related)... Substitute any of those back in and the sentence becomes:

"he likes the (jobs/tasks/activites) in the garden." - all plural

'the works' sounds strange in english, but it is accepted in french, not everything is going to translate literally so try putting in word with a similar english meaning that will make the association more natural. Those words may have a different translation to french but it will help to remember that a plural works in this sentence.

5/5/2014, 4:15:18 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/LinuxTak
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It should be 'He likes to work in the garden' . the provided translation doesn't make sense.

7/9/2015, 10:28:38 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/YahyaZuhair

No, that'll be "il aime travailler dans le jardin"

7/11/2015, 6:30:21 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/jbrown19203

It is a delicate balance divining when Duolingo is going to go for the literal translation or the one which seems to be naturally spoken.

7/31/2015, 7:33:26 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/maetavee
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when I hovered over "travaux", a word I had not encountered before, it said it could translate as "yard work". I put "yard work", but it marked me incorrect.

10/5/2015, 2:49:34 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/Ronnie-JA

What was your full sentence?

10/5/2015, 3:07:08 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/maetavee
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He likes the yard work in the garden. The only thing duolingo marked incorrect was my use of the word "yard".

10/5/2015, 3:08:38 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/Ronnie-JA

In which case it's because "les travaux dans le jardin" in it's own right could be translated as "yard work" (or my preference, "garden work"). So in effect you've duplicated the translation by saying "yard work in the garden".

In all honesty, I feel this could be an acceptable translation but I would agree with Duo that it's not the best available. However, you could always report it as an alternative translation.

10/5/2015, 3:22:48 PM
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