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  5. "Il est secrétaire."

"Il est secrétaire."

Translation:He is a secretary.

March 9, 2013

18 Comments


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

Why is there no article?


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

Occupations, jobs, professions do not need an article in French.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/trung.n.thu

Could you please clarify these two sentences: c'est un juge; ce sont des soldats. Does this mean the article "des" in the second sentence can be omitted. Thanks a lot.


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

"des" is the plural indefinite article for "un" or "une" and it cannot be omitted in such a sentence:

  • c'est un juge - ce sont des juges.

As "juge" is a profession, you can also say the same thing with a real pronoun and no article:

  • il est juge - ils sont juges.

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/trung.n.thu

Thank you! So it means that we normally don't to use articles with être+ a profession but the articles are needed when we use c'est or ce sont + a profession?


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

Yes, and note that you don't use articles with "devenir + a profession" either.


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

Why not "He is an assistant."? Who on Earth would write administrative assistant?


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

There are lots of kinds of assistants that don't to secretarial-type labor. The kind that do are sometimes called "administrative assistants." In short, it doesn't back-translate. What would back translate is adjoint, assitant, or aide.


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

Am I right to assume the word for this profession is, unlike other professions in French, never declined according to gender (and is always written as if the job holder was female?)


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

You are right, there is no change according on gender, simply because of the -aire ending, which is bi-gender: un/e commissaire, un/une fonctionnaire...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/charlotte_p15

what is a secretary?


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

Originally someone who kept the secrets of someone important, nowadays it's another word for administrative assistant (though lets face it they usually know most of the bosses' secrets)


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

why not "c'est secretaire"?


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

Back translation: this is secretary.

  • he is a secretary = "il est secrétaire" or "c'est un secrétaire".

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

Whay "a"? There is no "un" in the text


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/n6zs
  • 2030

The reason is that we translate correct and natural French (il est secrétaire -or- C'est un secrétaire) to correct and natural English: he is a secretary.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Phosphorus347

Because that is the way we say most professions, and they might not be the only one.

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