"The women are writing letters to us."

Translation:Les femmes nous écrivent des lettres.

September 10, 2017



why is les femmes on ecrivent des lettres wrong ? on instead of nous .

October 3, 2017


"On" cannot be used as an object, only as a single subject.

October 4, 2017


Why "Les femmes ecrivent des lettres a nous" is incorrect?

July 18, 2018


Because when the construction needs the preposition "à", the personal pronoun is placed before the verb.

July 18, 2018


uhhhhhhhhhhh...doesnt it mean les femmes nous ecrivent des lettres a nous or les femmes ecrivent les lettres?

September 10, 2017


Both direct object and indirect object pronouns are placed before the verb:

  • I write you = je vous écris
  • the women write to us = les femmes nous écrivent.

If you add "à nous" at the end, you are giving twice the same information. This is what "redundant" means.

September 15, 2017


Sitesurf, Merçi beaucoup!

October 24, 2017


And Les femmes écrivent des lettres à nous ? Is this a correct structure at all? Merci

October 29, 2017


No it is not. Whenever the verb is constructed with the preposition "à", the indirect object pronoun is placed before the verb.

October 29, 2017


So, for example, one could say Je parle à Jacques but, when replacing Jacques with the indirect object pronoun it would become Je lui parle, n'est-ce pas ? Merci encore.

October 29, 2017



October 31, 2017


@Pixies_ .... and be sure to read previous comments to yours in the discussion threads. It is often very helpful and may have previously addressed your questions.

July 1, 2018


Thankyou very much Sitesurf, this helped tremendously.

October 29, 2017


Les femmes nous écrivent des lettres à nous? "The women write us letters to us?" No, that's extremely redundant. And just having Les femmes écrivent les lettres "The women write the letters" (First of all, notice how you've changed des to les and thereby added "the" into the translation) leaves out any indication that the target audience of the letters is "us".

I can't think of any instance in which you would say à nous, because that combination must become the indirect object pronoun nous placed before the conjugated verb. It's required, in the same way that you can't say de le - that combination must become du. It's not optional.

(There is one exception for à nous, but it doesn't mean "to us"; it means "ours" and is synonymous with le nôtre, e.g. Le victoire est à nous! "Victory is ours!")

September 10, 2017


I said "Les femmes ecrivent une lettre pour nous." What's the difference?

December 12, 2017


To write to sb = écrire à qqn

The required preposition is "à" not "pour", which would change the meaning of the sentence.

December 12, 2017


why is the hint it gives you not the answer?

January 12, 2018


It doesn't give you the answer because it is a hint. It is there to guide you to an answer.

But on this question specifically, the hint only confused me more, so I see what you mean.

January 19, 2018


I think you can also do à nous at the end instead of in the middle. Both are correct I believe.

February 1, 2018


Not in proper French. Whenever the preposition is "à", the object pronoun is placed before the verb.

February 1, 2018


Can someone please explain this? I don't understand this sentence.

February 4, 2018


The word order changes when the indirect object is a pronoun and the verb constructed with the preposition "à".

"us / to us" = nous / à nous

The women write letters [to us] = Les femmes [nous] écrivent des lettres

February 5, 2018


Letter is a countable noun so I think it should be "les lettres", but why it is "des lettres"?

February 9, 2018


I personally think, because even though, as you said, it's countable "les lettres" would mean "the letters" and, as you may know already, "la/le(s) - the" is used when you mean a noun (thing or being or idea), which has been already mentioned or you already know about, which one in particular you are aiming towards. "De(s)/du" is, so to say, the word for "some" and it's also, as in English, used for (un)countable nouns, but we don't intend to aim to one directly or hasn't been mentioned or an unknown amount of a noun (e.g. An apple, Two apples, Some apples, Any apple). So, long story short:

"La/Le(s)" means "the" and it's used, when the noun has been mentioned, one in particular;

"De(s)" means some" and it's used when we don't know or care about the nouns amout.

-I hope it helped.

February 14, 2018


I have already mentioned that I do not have accents on my device. Can I have some feedback about this problem?

February 22, 2018


Can someone explain why Les femmes sont en train de nous écrire des lettres, is wrong?

March 13, 2018


Why not "les femmes on ecrivent des lettres"?

July 28, 2018


"On" is a personal pronoun meaning "one" or "someone", or sometimes replacing "nous". It has no role in this sentence.

"Are writing" is a continuous present tense, which does not exist in French as a verbal form. To translate "the women are writing", you have to use the French present tense "écrivent". Context would distinguish the meaning of "are writing" from "write" in simple present.

July 31, 2018


TanAnthony21, I thought that was a good question. The Wikipedia page en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_personal_pronouns has a nice table showing how "on" and "nous" work in colloquial speech.

subject: on

reflexive: se

direct object: nous

indirect object: nous

disjunctive: nous

According to that table "on" is not allowed here, because "on" can only be the subject of a sentence.

January 3, 2019
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