why in "Parlez-vous français ?" in parlez before vous?

July 19, 2017


In France, teachers teach to young pupils that mainly they can use three different ways of asking a question :

Vous parlez français ?

Parlez-vous français ?

Est-ce que vous parlez français ?

what are the differences?

"parlez-vous français ? " is more formal, a literay way... The others are widely spoken, both.

Because when you are asking something like do you or can you in French, the verb you are asking goes in front of the pronoun. For example: veux-tu manger maintenant? Do you want to eat now?

There are many several ways of asking a question in French, and this is one of them.

The subject (vous) and verb (parlez) have been 'inverted' - something that happens in French to make it into a question and not a statement.

You're welcome

This is basically a very simple example if an "Inversion", a formal French method to ask questions. You will learn more about it in the "Questions" skill in your French tree. (Basically you just put the verb before the subject in a statement and form a question). You can observe this in English too: Statement: He is there. Question: Is he there? Same thing in French, just that there is a hyphen in between the flipped words.

different languages have different placement of words. Nothing to worry about!

its difficult though

Well, you could also translate "parlez-vous français?" in your language and then put it in the placement of words which you would for your language

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