"I exchange my coat for your hat."

Translation:J'échange mon manteau contre ton chapeau.

March 4, 2013

This discussion is locked.


I was also surprised to see that 'échanger pour' was correct as well as 'échanger contre'. Cost me a heart too! (Bright side: more likely to remember it now?!)


I guess you have to think of it as being similar to English where "I'm exchanging my coat against your hat" is basically the same as "I'm exchanging my coat for your hat"


But "I'm exchanging my coat against your hat" is not said very often in English. So which way is more common to say this in French?


there are a number of translations for the French word contre such as



in exchange for


Yes, but not all of them form idiomatically correct English in this sentence.


in the last 'échanger' sentence, Duo wouldn't accept 'pour. Now it says it is one of 2 correct answers!! Which is correct?


Same here - when I tried échanger pour, Duo said I was wrong and I "learned" that lesson, although it confused me. Now it's saying I was correct in the first place. At least I would like, along with jake3389, to know which is more common.


With échanger ("to exchange") always use contre ("in exchange for" - http://www.wordreference.com/fren/contre several meanings depending on context). Literally literally translating as "I exchange my coat in exchange for your hat".

With changer ("to change") use pour ("for") OR contre

As in English, exchange and change have similar meanings but they definitely don't have the same meaning.


I had read somewhere that "échanger" is used with "contre". So why the "pour" now?


Can someone please explain this


Sitesuf says that the proper form is:

j'échange des euros contre des dollars

je change des euros contre / pour (avoir/prendre) des dollars.


well then it shouldn't be accepting "échange pour" now. don't mind getting something wrong, but being told I'm wrong, learning the "right" way, and then being told I was right in the first place is VERY confusing!


You may note in my comment that the first example was j'échange and the the second example was je change.

J'échange takes contre alone as does the correct answer posted at the top of this page.

Je change takes either contre or pour but in conjunction with the appropriate following verb.

Sitesurf says that échanger pour is incorrect. If Duo is still saying it is correct then Sitesurf disagreed if I understood his comment correctly.

Using change and exchange as if they mean the same thing is very common in English, so Duo is doing the same thing with French.



I take you at your word that the French, in ordinary conversation would never use j'échange and je change as if they mean the same thing and break the grammar.

As Duo, Sitesurf and myself have pointed out the correct usage is J'échange contre. As Sitesurf and myself have pointed out je change pour + verb is also correct grammar and mean much the same thing.

I disagree with your point that what English does is irrelevant. This course all about English usage. The example at the top of this page is to translate from English to French. Those English speakers who treat exchange and change as being indistinguishable in English, in the right context, may well be led to think the same can be done in French. While the French might be close in meaning, échanger and changer are subject to different grammar.

It is worthwhile to point out to English speakers that it easy to make a mistake when translating échanger/changer. So easy that it appears that Duo itself has fallen into the English speaker's trap when giving an alternative correct answer.

It is not just a Duo mistake. It is a mistake common to English speakers. Watch out for it. I am not sure why you would object to drawing attention to it.


Unfortunately, the French don't do what you say Duo is doing. As Sitesurf pointed out, the correct usage is "echanger contre." What English does is irrelevant.


I think we may be misunderstanding each other just a bit. I completely agree with you and Sitesurf that "échanger" requires "contre" and that "changer" uses "pour" for a similar meaning.

In English both "change" and "exchange" use "for" when they have the sense of "échanger." That is not an error; it is how English works.

But when Duo offers "échanger pour" as a "correct solution," it IS an error. That is not how French works.

I think that what you are saying is that literal, word-for-word translation is a mistake, and again I agree thoroughly. I don't think we have anything to argue about.


J'échange mon cheval pour ta vache was marked wrong. What is the difference?


I'd really like to know why, too!


Me too. I was marked incorrectly in the previous question, so I didn't choose it here, and then marked incorrectly here too!


I guess I'm supposed to have a priori knowledge of this?


Well, again this damned prepositions! Funny thing: if a translate sentence to my native language, it will be " J'échange mon manteau sur ton chapeau." Definitely, i really don't understand sometimes which preposition should be used in certain sentences. In fact it's very important moment. Choosing the wrong preposition can give the wrong meaning to the whole phrase or transform it into meaningless "abracadabra"...


@Superhundel.......Hahahahaha!....... I cannot help here at all but just to let you know I am drowning in the same swimming pool! WHERE ARE MY prepositional WATER WINGS!!! I give you a lingot to make me more buoyant! Still drowning!!! Take TWO!!! PLEASE!!!


thanks dude!)) i hope we can live long enough to make the pepos our best friends!) Here is a lingot for you from my swimming pool for make me smile! but to me, it's more than swimming pool, this is a whole ocean indeed!)


Why is 'je contre' correct as well? I lost a heart grr


Well bet your bottom dollar that there is an intimate, infinite very involved grammatical reason for it. Some students here seem to have an amazing grasp of grammar and may hit this thread and provide answers which were copiously forthcoming in the "Contre" thread. Since doing this course I learn that my GCE English (sort of second-rate Baccalaureate) gave me a C+ pass whilst being pretty ignorant of grammar. I really struggle with it here. No bad thing though.Never too late but such a shame. FTR I took my exams in the early 1960s.


I have gone through this lesson twice, and last time I was marked wrong for choosing the sentence with "pour" in it ...only contre was accepted.


When would you use pour and when would you use contre?


Hoping by commenting again that someone will answer what we are all asking. Which is more common échange contre or échange pour? DL marked échange pour wrong in the last lesson


Why not "échange vers"?


In the French that I know, "échanger contre" is correct; "changer pour" is correct. Since when have those two verbs become indistinguishable?


Not sure what you mean. They are definitely distinguishable as you wrote them, but on Duo, both sentences use échanger. Échanger contre and Échanger pour


Only on Duo is that the case. In the real world, "échanger" requires "contre." Duo's error does not make "échanger pour" correct. The two verbs are used differently in real French, and Duo should not be confusing them.


Confirmed - report, repeat until fixed :) Duo works on our feedback . . .


Why is 'pour' also correct when I was marked wrong in a previous sentence, using different nouns?

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