"Ce sont des chats."

Translation:These are cats.

February 28, 2013

40 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/najpodge

I asked this question for another one, but why not "Ces sont"?

February 28, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/bucko
  • 25
  • 22
  • 13

I'm not sure exactly why but it's always 'ce sont'. Just a peculiarity of the language I guess!

February 28, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
Mod
  • 25
  • 25
  • 9
  • 8

yes, you're right, "ce" remains singular (neutral in fact)

March 1, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/AnoopVargh

I'm still not sure about this - why use Ce instead of Ils/Elles ?

August 19, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
Mod
  • 25
  • 25
  • 9
  • 8

Please copy-paste what follows somewhere near you:

In French, "c'est" (sing.) and "ce sont" (plural) are used every time pronoun it, she, he or they is subject of verb "être" and followed by a nominal group, ie: modifier (1) + noun (+ adjective)

o it is + (modifier +) noun => c'est + modifier + noun (+ adjective)

o she is + (modifier +) noun => c'est + modifier + noun (+ adjective)

o he is + (modifier +) noun => c'est c'est + modifier + noun (+ adjective)

o they are + (modifier +) noun => ce sont + modifier + noun (+ adjective)

(1)NOTE: French nouns are always used with "modifiers": articles, definite or indefinite (le/la/les, un/une/des) or possessive adjectives (mon/ma/mes, etc) or demonstrative adjectives (ce/cette/ces) or numeral (deux, trois...).

(2)NOTE: the above rule has no exception with indefinite article un/une/des, but a few exceptions with other modifiers:

  • he is THE chief = IL est LE chef (single statute) + c'est LE chef
  • she is HIS second wife = ELLE est SA seconde épouse (single statute) + c'est SA seconde épouse
August 19, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/AnoopVargh

So you're saying "He is a boy" should be written as "C'est un garçon" and should not be written as "Il est un garçon"?

August 19, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
Mod
  • 25
  • 25
  • 9
  • 8

yes, exactly.

August 19, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/Nicola526448
  • 25
  • 13
  • 12
  • 10
  • 7
  • 7
  • 4
  • 1001

I was trying to see what the phrase 'She is an attractive woman' would translate to as it has both an article and an adjective and i started putting sentences into Google translate. It keeps telling me that 'She is a woman' and similar is 'Elle est' when the rules from Duo's notes page say that it should be 'C'est'.

Is Google translate wrong and if so how badly? In English a lot of things which are grammatically incorrect are used in everyday language because many native speakers don't even know it's wrong. For instance saying '(Happy) New Years'. Is this similar perhaps - although incorrect it's so pervasive that it's being put into the translator as the right way to say it?

August 2, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
Mod
  • 25
  • 25
  • 9
  • 8

she is an attractive woman = c'est une femme attrayante.

I can tell you that nobody would say "elle est une femme attrayante" unless they seek a stylistic effect (journalists could, for they like to reinvent the wheel).

August 2, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
Mod
  • 25
  • 25
  • 9
  • 8

You could use the whole saltshaker! ;-)

August 2, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Nicola526448
  • 25
  • 13
  • 12
  • 10
  • 7
  • 7
  • 4
  • 1001

Fair enough. Google translate is just wrong :-) I'm not too surprised - I've always taken what it says with the proverbial grain of salt.

Thank you for clarifying.

August 2, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/incah

Thanks for clarifying this. There is probably no way I would have gotten that from this site without your explanation. Then again, the site provides this discussion spot. :)

I love Duolingo.

November 21, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/Cheng_Joanna

Why is it ELLE est SA seconde épouse but not elle est SON seconde épouse?

July 21, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
Mod
  • 25
  • 25
  • 9
  • 8

Because possessive adjective agree with the possession, not with the owner:

"épouse" is feminine singulier so: sa seconde épouse

"son épouse" is used as a replacement for sa-épouse which generates a vowel conflict between a-é.

"seconde" starting with a consonant, you do not need a change in the possessive adjective.

July 22, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/SeanLin211380

So "elle" and "il" are essentially useless since all nouns have modifiers? So they should never be used? Then why did we have to learn them in the first place?

July 23, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
Mod
  • 25
  • 25
  • 9
  • 8

What is explained here is an exception.

When "il/elle est" or "ils/elles sont" are followed by adverbs or adjectives they remain untouched.

And the pronouns are also used with thousands of verbs.

As a rule, "il, elle, ils and elles" are as useful in French as "he, she, it, and they" are in English.

July 23, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/yacico
  • 20
  • 12
  • 10
  • 6
  • 6
  • 5
  • 4
  • 3

I'm curious here: what would it then mean if someone said "C'est sa seconde exposée." Could one use it in some context? Is there exceptions for ce sont too?

Also if I may, may I ask for a link to the rule for c'est and elle/il?

Thank you beforehand :)

July 26, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
Mod
  • 25
  • 25
  • 9
  • 8

I'm not sure I understand your question but do you mean "exposé" as a report or talk? If so, it is masculine: "c'est son second exposé."

July 26, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/kdrussell
  • 12
  • 5
  • 3
  • 2
  • 2
  • 2

I am confused...I wrote These are some cats, which is grammatically correct. Why was I marked as incorrect?

January 7, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Yzaguaccio

how do you indicate the difference between "those" and "these" on this exercise? Thank you

February 17, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
Mod
  • 25
  • 25
  • 9
  • 8

these are cats = ceux-ci sont des chats

those are cats = ceux-là sont des chats

February 17, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/Hamburglar4

Then why is it 'ce' in this question and not 'ceux-ci'? Is the answer supposed to be 'they are cats'? I put "these are' and it accepted it.

October 5, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/tu.8zPhLD72zzoZN
  • 25
  • 25
  • 22
  • 18
  • 16
  • 16
  • 13
  • 13
  • 12
  • 11
  • 11
  • 10
  • 10
  • 10
  • 9
  • 8
  • 8
  • 8
  • 7
  • 7
  • 7
  • 6
  • 5
  • 3
  • 3
  • 3
  • 3

for "ce" , both "these" and "those" will be accepted, as well as "they". This is a broader term and "c'est" is actually ce + est with the elision taking out the 'e' of "ce" and rep[acing it with an apostrophe, so "ce" also means "this", "that" and "it". Now, if you want to indicate the difference between "these" and "those", for example if you had them in the same sentence, then you could use "ceux-ci" and "ceux-là". The French use "ce" more often than the more specific versions. http://french.about.com/library/weekly/aa032500c.htm http://dictionnaire.reverso.net/francais-anglais/ce http://french.about.com/library/weekly/aa032500.htm http://french.about.com/od/grammar/a/pronouns_demonstrative.htm http://french.about.com/od/grammar/g/demonstrativeadjective.htm http://french.about.com/od/grammar/a/indefiniterelativepronouns.htm

March 5, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/Eldridge81

Why did it not show the "Another translation"? I did " These are SOME cats". :-D

November 23, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/karoline876644

In duolingo website, you have all theory for each lesson. It's very usefull. You just need to access with your login and password as you do in the app. https://www.duolingo.com/skill/fr/Verbs%3A-%C3%8Atre-_-Avoir

May 3, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Blu200920

Doesn't 'des' mean 'some'? Why did I get that wrong?

June 4, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
Mod
  • 25
  • 25
  • 9
  • 8

"des" means "more than one" and it is required.

Sometimes, you can find "some XX" translating "des XX" but usually "cats" is the plural of "a cat", and "some" is optional.

June 5, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/RT9Eh1

If 'some' is optional then it should be acepted if included.

Is there any construct in Frenxh which would make 'some' in the translation obligatory?

February 28, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
Mod
  • 25
  • 25
  • 9
  • 8

Yes, like this:

  • Certains l'aiment chaud = some like it hot.
March 3, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/ashmita79173

Duilingo best guide of french language

July 23, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Moxie12

I put "They are cats" and it was wrong. Is it just more proper to say "These are cats"?

February 29, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Txsha3

How do you know if it's "these" or "this"?

April 19, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
Mod
  • 25
  • 25
  • 9
  • 8

"sont" and "des" are in plural, so there are several cats here: these/those/they are cats

April 19, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Jura653848

Why its "They are" not "there are"? EN translation here gives "there" as an option

June 18, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
Mod
  • 25
  • 25
  • 9
  • 8

There are cats = Il y a des chats

they/these/those are cats = ce sont des chats

June 18, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/kakurady

«Ce sont des chats»? Pourquoi pas «Il y a des chats» ou «il y a chats»?

July 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
Mod
  • 25
  • 25
  • 9
  • 8

il y a = there is/are

"il y a chats" is incorrect, because the plural of "un chat" is "des chats".

July 11, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Felipe76598

Why isnt "they are the cats" accepted?

April 11, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf
Mod
  • 25
  • 25
  • 9
  • 8

The sentence in English is the plural of "it is a cat" = "c'est un chat"

The sentence in French is "ce sont des chats" because "des" is the plural of "un".

April 12, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/mags671097

How would you say those are cats, is it the same?

December 15, 2018
Learn French in just 5 minutes a day. For free.