1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: French
  4. >
  5. "Since then, he is the chief …

"Since then, he is the chief of the Opposition in the Assembly."

Translation:Depuis, c'est le chef de l'opposition à l'Assemblée.

February 15, 2013



Shouldn't this be "c'est" rather than "il est" because we are talking about a specific position?


you can use both in this case "depuis, il est le chef..." being slightly more formal than "depuis, c'est le chef..;" which needs that the person in question was clearly defined before.


ahh, just realized that c'est is "he has been"...


Well, yes, in this context. In French, when discussing something that began in the past and continues into the present, the present tense is used. So it's the "depuis" that throws "c'est" into the Present Perfect Continuous tense in English - a tense that doesn't exist in French.


Although the simple present is also ok in the English version.


For «since then» can we say «désormais»?


I don't think so, because it would mean that "he is the chief" starts now. "Since then" in my opinion is about an action that has started in the past and continues at the present time.

So, in French, I would say "depuis lors, il est le chef..." Which in English,should rather be "since (then), he has been the chief..."


So, "désormais" is more like "from now on".

[deactivated user]

    OK, this is frustrating. Using "he is" in the previous lesson after depuis gets marked as wrong. In this one it insists on "he is" (same sentence) I will report it as a problem too, but just wanted to know if there was some nuance I am missing

    [deactivated user]

      Think I just realised the difference is in the use of c'est and il est as mentioned in the other comments. My mistake.


      In this sentence, both constructions can be used "il est le chef..." or "c'est le chef..." Sorry, I haven't identified why... yet!


      Some people here seem to have understood something I haven't, I still think c'est and il est are interchangeable here [with the difference Sitesurf mentions, of c'est having a stronger requirement that the person be previously known] and I'm reporting it as an error now, but if anyone has a clear explanation, please share it!


      you are right, in this specific case, because "THE chief" makes it different from "a chief":

      • he is a chief accountant : il est chef comptable (profession, no article)
      • he is a major opponent: c'est un opposant majeur (he is + article + noun -> c'est + article + noun)
      • he is the chief...: il est le chef... OR c'est le chef...


      Any difference between à l'Assemblée and dans l'Assemblée?


      "à l'Assemblée" refers to the Assemblée Nationale, for example, i.e. the location and the group of parliament members.

      "dans l'assemblée" would refer to the audience of any event like a conference


      Couldn't you say "depuis ce temps la" instead of "depuis ce moment la"?


      Yes, depuis ce temps-là (hyphen), depuis cette époque-là, or depuis lors

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