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French: use of 'être doué'

Hi all,

I'm trying to figure out what preposition to use after 'être doué'. At first I figured:

1) être doué pour + verb


2) être doué de + noun

But I also came across 'pour' and 'dans', for example:

3) être doué pour les mathématiques 4) être doué dans les études de X

Is there a rule as to decide whether it's pour/de/dans/something_else?

Thanks for your help!

PS: I guess case n°3 actually holds a hidden verb (e.g. 'pratiquer') so it might not be a different case at all.

August 27, 2017



You can add "en" to the list.
Je suis doué en mathématiques=I am gifted in mathematics

"être doué de + noun" means something slightly different: L'homme est doué de raison=Man is gifted with reason. Basically "to possess a quality" (usually for humans or at least living things) not really to excel at something.

You can also just say: Je suis doué=I am gifted/talented.

Tiunterof explained it a bit but generally using "être doué dans" sounds weird even in those specific cases where it is correct.


Most of the time, when you use ''pour'', you add a domain, a sport, an activity. ''Être doué POUR les mathématiques/la dance/le chant/le sport/le théâtre/l'écriture''

When you say ''dans'', you usually add an action, for exemple: ''Être doué DANS la compréhension de [something]/l'écoute de [something] /l'apprentissage de [something]/ l'utilisation de [something]

You could say ''Être doué DANS les sports'' but it will sound weird and kind of old fashioned. But the reverse is less weird, because you can say ''Être doué POUR la compréhension de [something]'', for exemple.

I hope it will helps.


Thank you. So, brèf: 'dans' will probably be followed by something more specific ('les études de mathématiques'), whereas 'pour' will be followed by a more general statement ("mathématiques" tout court)?


That's pretty much it, indeed. ^^ (By the way, ''bref'' takes no accent on the ''e'')


Haha! Thanks for the quick help @Tiunterof! ;)


No accent on 'bref', indeed, and it may be good to know that it is actually short for 'en bref', which is the correct expression; 'bref' is informal.


Je vous remercie!

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