"Mes livres sont rouges."
Translation:My books are red.
So, to clarify, "mon" is singular possessive and "mes" is plural possessive? This idea that all words change because of a plural is something I have to adjust to
mon livre - masculine singular
ma table - feminine singular
mon amie - feminine singular (ma changed to mon in front of a vowel)
mon habitude - feminine singular (ma changed to mon in front of a non-aspirate H)
mes livres, mes tables, mes amis, mes amies, mes habitudes - for all plurals
There are 2 kinds of H in French:
- "H muet" = non-aspired or non-aspirate H (or "mute")
- "H aspiré" = aspired/aspirate H
Neither produce any sound, but in the 1st case, you can make liaisons and elisions:
- l'homme = LOM
- l'hôtel = LOTEL
In the second case, liaisons and elisions are not allowed:
- le héros = LEUH || ERO
- le homard (lobster) = LEUH || OMAR
Note that in English, there is a similar concept with "an honor" vs "a horror".
Thanks for that Sitesurf!! :)
Do you know any other efficient way of learning as a complement to Duolingo..I feel like I have to immerse myself more and dive into the language, so that I remember and understand everything.
So far, I have often used french.about.com as a source of information on various matters (grammar, conjugations, pronunciation, spelling...).
However, since I am French, that was just to check on things that I already know very well.
You may read about others' experience (forum Discussion/French from English): many learners comment on their experience when they have finished their tree and often, they give nice tips and links.
when a color adjective is also the name of a real thing, you don't agree it in gender and number.
to know more: http://french.about.com/od/grammar/a/adjectives_inv.htm
Well, Sitesurf, as always with French, there are exceptions. Mes livres sont roses!
I saw this the other day, so now it's really confusing. What's your expert opinion on this?
Les exceptions marron (variable en nombre): des chaussures marrons
Et puis: http://cnrtl.fr/definition/marron
Rem. Certains aut. considèrent que marron est devenu un véritable adj. et l'accordent avec le subst. qu'il qualifie
Comme orange, le terme marron utilisé adjectivement pour désigner la couleur est invariable (« des yeux marron »), mais certains auteurs le considèrent comme un véritable adjectif et l'accordent
- « Ma pauvre abeille, tu crois que tous les yeux sont gris. Il y en a des bleus, des marrons, des verts et des noirs » (Sartre, Les Mains sales)1.
The key is in: certains auteurs
Some want to simplify French spelling or grammar, or tense sequence...
I am no expert but for the sake of not adding to Duo's hard work on variants, I will always recommend to strictly follow usual rules.
Well, I consider you an expert on the French language, and even your English is better than a lot of young English speakers... And yes, of course, the key is in certains auteurs. Thank you!
mon livre (masc sing), ma lettre (fem sing), mes livres et mes lettres (plural)
In the audio it's clear that it's "rouges" but can I say "roux" when it's male, like "les livres"?
You have to focus on determiners: articles and possessive/demonstrative adjectives that do not sound the same in singular vs plural:
in singular: mon livre
In addition, the verb is different as well:
in singular: mon livre est
How can you hear the silent s's for plural form in French? I know the difference between some, but others its almost impossible to hear the difference between singular and plural.
You can't hear the difference between rouge and rouges. You can hear "mes" versus "mon" and "sont" versus "est".
"sont" is used for any third person, plural noun subjects. Ils, elles, mes livres, les chiens, cettes maisons, etc, all use sont.
In French the possessive adjective agrees with the thing owned not with the person who owns it.
"My book" = "mon livre"
"My books" = mes livres"
"Our book" = "notre livre"
"Our books" = "nos livres"
Checkout link for more information on French possessive adjectives.
I don't understand. Can't Ma and Mon be correct? Her books are red/ his books are red. Thanks!
"Mon", "ma" and "mes" all mean "my", but "mon" is used with masculine nouns, "ma" with feminine nouns(*) and "mes" with plural nouns.
(*) If a feminine noun starts with a vowel sound, "ma" turns to "mon" to avoid the vowel conflict
In this sentence, I had to pick which 'my' it was... There was 'Mon, Mes or Ma.' I picked 'Mon' because all the words there meant 'my' so like I get confused here because the translation should be the same but it's not!! SOMEONE PLEASE EXPLAIN THIS TO ME!!!!
Yes "mon", "ma", and "mes" all translate as "my" but they are used differently.
"Mon" is used when the noun is masculine singular - "my hat" = "mon chapeau".
"Ma" is used when the noun is feminine singular - "my dress" = "ma robe"
"Mes" is used when the noun is plural of either gender.
"My hats" = "Mes chapeaux"
"My dresses" = "Mes robes"
"My books" = "Mes livres"
One additional complication is that when we have a feminine singular noun that begins with a vowel or a mute "H" we use "mon" not "ma".
"My clock" = "Mon horloge" (eventhough "horloge" is feminine.
The same pattern is seen in "ton", "ta", "tes" (your) and in "son", "sa", "ses" (his/her)
Would that be the French equalvent of My books are red (as in read)? If not how would you say that?
my books are read = mes livres sont lus (past participle of the verb "lire" in masculine plural, to agree with "livres").
"livres" is masculine and plural, so you need "mes" (the plural form is the same in masculine and feminine).
"mon" is masculine and singular, for "mon livre".
"mon" can also be feminine and singular, if the next feminine word starts with a vowel sound: "mon amie"
If the noun is in plural, like "livres", you need "mes": mes livres
is there any way to memorize all of these mon, mes, ton ,ta stuff, it's all so confusing
Make your own list or use the charts shown in the Tips & Notes, repeat and repeat again, until you know them by heart and can use them without thinking.
You should hear "mes" as [me], and the verb is in plural: "sont" [sɔ̃].
In singular, you would hear "mon" [mɔ̃], and the verb would be in singular: "est" [ɛ].
This form of questioning is not working using the browser. When I skip this question it keeps coming back and I cannot move to the next question. Maybe it is my browser?
"livres" is plural, so the adjectives attached to that noun have to agree in plural as well:
- singular "mon" -> plural "mes"
- singular "rouge" -> plural "rouges"
It would have been "mon livre," not "mes livres." Also, it would have used a different conjugation of être: "Mon livre est rouge."
What Brunito said, and also it is "sont" meaning "are" which would not make sense in English. My book are red.
Because it said 'mes' and 'sont', not 'est' .. sont and mes are used for plural
As a side note, the spelling of "mes" makes a difference, too - "me" in French means "me", "to me", or "myself" in English, but it never means "my" anything -- that's strictly 'mon', 'ma', or (when I have more than one of something) 'mes'.
Ex.: Elle me voit. = "She sees me." Elle me parle. = "She talks to me." Elle me parle de mes chaussures. = "She talks to me about my shoes."
JUST AN FYI FOR THE NEXT PERSON TO STUMBLE ACROSS THIS: you can tell the difference with the verb "sont." sont is a Il/Elle/On verb for "are," not "is."
"sont" is 3rd person plural (ils, elles) and "est" is 3rd person singular (il, elle, on).
mon (+ masculine singular noun), ma (+ feminine singular noun) or mes (+ plural noun) = my
Impractical application for sentence. Perhaps 'My books are heavy' would be more likely actually used in real life.
Duolingo is not a guide book for tourists when you can pick one sentence and just repeat as a parrot.
At this point in time, you are learning red = rouge (singular) or rouges (plural).
If you are patient, you will learn other adjectives: heavy = lourd (masc sing), lourde (fem sing), lourds (masc plur) or lourdes (fem plur)