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"My daughter wishes for a horse."

Translation:Ma fille souhaite avoir un cheval.

March 8, 2013



Why is "Ma fille souhaite un cheval" not correct? I didn't see another verb in there at all.


It is not wrong but it is not the way the French say it. "souhaiter" is most often followed by another more specific verb in the infinitive form, to better specify the meaning: souhaite avoir, souhaite posséder, souhaite s'occuper de...


I believe then asking for a French translation given the English sentence is a bit too ambiguous. I could say the girl is wishing to own a horse, is wishing to receive a horse, is wishing to possess a horse... either these should all be counted, or (et je prefere) the English sentence changed to "My daughter wishes to have a horse"


or is making a wish on behalf of a horse, if you wanna get crazy


Or if you want to get really technical, you could say that she is wishing on behalf of a block of rock seperated from the surrounding rock.



Bonjour Sitesurf. I know that this discussion is 5 years old now, but I just encountered two sentences in the 'Learning English from French' area that really concern me. It is to do with the use of 'wishes for' in English. With respect to the sentence at the top of this page: 'My daughter wishes for a horse', I would say that, perhaps, if my daughter was Hermione Granger from the Harry Potter series. Or, if it was my daughter's birthday and she was cutting the cake (and making a silent wish) I might quietly say to my wife 'Our daughter is wishing for a horse'. Otherwise I would say: 'My daughter wishes that she could own a horse; My daughter would like to have/own a horse. I would use the word 'wishing' or 'wish' in the following examples: We all wish for peace; My mother wishes that we would keep our bedrooms tidy; My daughter wishes that she had curly hair. The second problematic sentence was: 'The student wishes for a computer'. Struggling to come up with an example here but here goes......A game show is devised where contestants are invited to write their wishes on a piece of paper. The host collects the papers and reads: The architect wishes for a new, modern office; the teacher wishes for improved administration software and the student wishes for a new computer. Apart from that contrived situation, I would say: The student would like to have a new computer; The student wishes that he/she could have a new computer. I am saying that the given English translations of the French sentences do not work for me. I notice that the given French sentence 'L'étudiante souhaite un ordinateur' (https://www.duolingo.com/comment/10958832/L-%C3%A9tudiante-souhaite-un-ordinateur) does not include a second verb in the infinitive form as you mentioned. Sorry about the long post!


I usually do not challenge my (American) colleagues when they elect a Best English translation for our original French sentences. However, I feel that something like "My daughter is hoping for a horse" or "My daughter would like to have a horse" would be closer to the French meaning.

She might be making a wish (faire un voeu), she might have expressed a wish (exprimer le souhait d'avoir qqch), she might expect to get a horse for her birthday, but the meaning is somewhat influenced by the horse vs "she is wishing for a better life" = elle souhaite une meilleure vie (the translation feels more comfortable with an immaterial object).

Carefully reading what you just explained, I must say that it rang a bell on several points.

"Espérer", "souhaiter", "vouloir" and "aimer" can be close in this context, but they are not interchangeable and sometimes, none of them can properly translate "to wish", especially the formula "I wish I had" and the like.

I'll translate your examples to the best of my understanding - that is, with the context you described. Please tell me what you think:

  • My daughter wishes that she could own a horse / My daughter would like to have/own a horse.= ma fille aimerait/voudrait (bien) avoir/posséder un cheval.

  • We all wish for peace = Nous souhaitons tous la paix.

  • My mother wishes that we would keep our bedrooms tidy = Ma mère aimerait/voudrait (bien) garder nos chambres en ordre/propres/rangées.

  • My daughter wishes that she had curly hair = Ma fille aimerait/voudrait (bien) avoir les cheveux bouclés.

  • The architect wishes for a new, modern office = L'architecte rêve/fait le voeu (d'avoir) d'un nouveau bureau moderne.

  • The teacher wishes for improved administration software and the student wishes for a new computer = Le professeur rêve/fait le voeu (d'avoir un) d'un logiciel de gestion amélioré et l'étudiant(e) rêve/fait le voeu (d'avoir un) d'un nouvel ordinateur.


Thank you for spending your valuable time considering my point of view. We have just returned from a week's holiday in Tasmania where I escaped from emails and notifications, so have just an hour ago seen your reply. (I still did my daily XP on Android). By the way, Tasmania seems to be a popular destination for French tourists. However, they mostly prefer to speak English there, which is understandable. I have read your translations carefully and agree with you that it is sometimes challenging to convey the exact meaning of an expression (..for me especially, not having your extensive knowledge of both languages.) That said, I think your translations sit very comfortably. I especially like your option of using the concept of 'dreams of' in the examples. As a bonus to our conversation, I have added 'les cheveux bouclés' and ''un logiciel de gestion amélioré' to my vocabulary.


I got that marked correct, so I guess Duo's getting looser with the rules!


that's what I said and duo accepted it


If the prompt is "My daughter wishes for a horse." then why isn't "Ma fille souhaite pour un cheval." accepted?


No, that is not the right French construction.


Okay, thanks for replying!


bonjour tout le monde ! j'ai atteint le niveau 10 et Duolingo 'a donné un trophée ,est ce qu'il n y a pas des autres niveaux? ici je peux voir qu'il y a des gens qui ont atteint le niveau 25,22..... alors pourquoi je ne peux pas continuer comme eux? pouvez-vous m'expliquer?


Because the english sentence is wrong. It should say "My daughter wishes to have a horse"


I put "Ma fille veut un cheval" and it was accepted. I was surprised because it did not have an infinitive, but I didn't see one in the English sentence so I pressed Check and it worked.


why isn't "ma fille rêve d'un cheval" acceptable?


because reve would mean she was dreaming of a horse, not necessarily wishing for it.


My daughter wishes to have a horse. =p


Why not "ma fille souhaite pour un cheval"


Nothing to understand, but something to learn: "souhaiter" is directly transitive (no preposition)


Does anyone know/have all the conjugations for souhaite?


Please enjoy the 'conjugator'



Oh Duo. You taught us earlier that "souhaite" means "hope". If the English sentence was "My daughter hopes to have a horse" everyone would have gotten it right.

But now, we've spent a heart to learn that "wish for" in French is the same as "hope to have", which makes sense.

Sometimes that's how we learn. :)


You could also say "a envie d'avoir un cheval", couldn't you?


"Avoir means 'have', and the sentence said, "My daughter wishes for a horse, not My daughter wishes to have a horse." While they still mean the same thing, the English sentence didn't say this, so I got marked wrong.

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