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  5. "They write some letters."

"They write some letters."

Translation:Ils écrivent des lettres.

March 6, 2013

35 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/paddy2555

why not du lettres ?


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

"du" is a masculine singular partitive article, used in front of an uncountable object with the meaning of "some/some of the".

une lettre (singular) => des lettres (plural)

je vois du brouillard = I see (some) fog.


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

would you normally use elles here because lettre is fem?


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

Nope, whether it is "ils" or "elles" depends on if "they" are males or females, not on if letter is masc/fem


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

"Elles" is the subject of write and represent female people:

  • they write some letters / some books = ils écrivent des lettres (fem) / des livres (masc) or elles écrivent des lettres (fem) / des livres (masc)

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

Ils is they and Elles is they so both would work


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

selected both before and got it wrong, didn't select both this time and got it wrong again; what am I doing wrong?


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

Which two did you select


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

You need to select bout 'elles' and 'ils' to get it correct. Not just one and not none.


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

Do both. it's asking to mark ALL that are correct


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

why could you not say "Elle sont escrivent des lettres"?


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

1.the verb is "écrire" not "escrire"

2.you cannot use auxiliary "être" with another conjugated verb just behind: you would not say "they are read".

3.the English form "writing" is the gerund mode, looking like the French "participe présent" ("écrivant") but not used in the same way.

4.the English construction "they are writing" (conjugated verb BE + gerund) expresses a continuous action (which is in progress at the time you speak).

5.this construction does not exist in French, so "they are writing" has to be translated by "ils/elles sont en train d'écrire" to express a continuous action.

6.otherwise, "they write" or "they are writing" can be translated by "ils/elles écrivent".


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

thanks! ... and i don;t know how to do accent marks on my keyboard :) thanks


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

I would set up my keyboard to international so I could switch between English and French (and any other language you may need/want) but, you could use ALT codes:
http://french.about.com/od/writing/ss/typeaccents_7.htm


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

thats amazing! thanks! â !! i did it! :)


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

just click on the little letters with accents on the screen (under the place where the cursor is)


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

Isnt elle fem plural?


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

Elle is feminine singular

Elles is feminine plural.


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

Would I pronounce the "s" is lettres?


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

No, you would not.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ckb2y

why is it ecrivent, why not just ecrite ?


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

It's plural, not singular. You would use 'ecrite' if you used 'il', 'elle' or 'on' and 'ecrivent' for 'ils' and 'elles'


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ckb2y

thank you for answering my question


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

Why is it that "du" and "des" only apply sometimes in translations. Because sometimes you use it and sometimes you don't in BOTH languages. But I, always get these wrong because I don't use "some" the times I'm supposed to, and I do use it when it's not necessary. What's the difference?


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

"some" is not required in front of nouns.

"du" is the contraction of "de+le" and can express the meaning of "some" in front of an uncountable noun: "du pain" = (some) bread

"des" is an indefinite article, the required plural of "un" or "une", whereas in English, "a/an" have no plural forms.

In this sentence, "ils écrivent des lettres" is the plural of "ils écrivent une lettre".

English, "some" is only optional.


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

Why, when choosing 'Elles' does it say it's incorrect. But in the solutions it says that 'Ils' or 'Elles' is OK? They both mean they, right?


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

If it was a multiple choice question, most probably both options with "ils" and "elles" respectively had to be ticked. Only the 3rd one was plain wrong.


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

i chose the right answer, and got it wrong both times


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

Are you sure there was not a 2nd right answer to be picked?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/tate.vaughan

there is two right answers. you have to select both.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Conster7

I selected the one it said was right and it said that I got it wrong! What happened???


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

its keep saying im wrong on each question

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