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  5. "That girl resembles her moth…

"That girl resembles her mother."

Translation:Cette fille ressemble à sa mère.

November 9, 2017





Best explanation of verbs that take the preposition à is given by Sitesurf here (be sure to read all her comments in this thread):


Also see point 10 here:


Why not Ca fille ? ( sorry no accents UK keyboard W10)


Because "Ça" is not demonstrative". In other words, "Ça" cannot be followed by a noun.


Thanks for this explanation. Much appreciated.


cette fille means this girl. The question asks for 'that girl' which would be cette fille là..


How about "Cela fille"?

Okay, I just tried that and DL said "wrong". It's such a limitation having only "Ce", "Cette" for "This" or "That".


I think that "Cela fille" is incorrect because "cela" is a pronoun and not an adjective (please see: http://mapage.noos.fr/mp2/les_pronoms_et_adjectifs_d_monstratifs.htm).

I understand that the difference is kind of tricky for English speakers since the line between these two is a bit 'blurry' in my opinion (please see: http://www.gingersoftware.com/content/grammar-rules/demonstrative-pronouns/ : "Do not confuse demonstrative adjectives with demonstrative pronouns. The words are identical, but demonstrative adjectives qualify nouns, whereas demonstrative pronouns stand alone").

I'll make a simple example:

"This car is blue, that is red."

Since in the first part of the sentence we use the construction:

THIS/THAT + noun; then this is a demonstrative ADJECTIVE;

So you would use the corresponding grammatical equivalent in French of course:

CE + masculin noun: Ce chien; CET + m. noun beginning with vowel: Cet arbre; CETTE + feminine noun: Cette fille; CES + plural nouns regardless of grammatical gender: Ces filles

ON THE OTHER HAND, the second part of the sentence "that is red" use the construction:

THIS/THAT + verb; then this is a demonstrative PRONOUN;

In this case, THIS/THAT do not qualify a noun but replace the noun itself (PRONOUN: from pro-1 ‘on behalf of’, + noun) and that's why they can followed/precede a verb.

So you would use the corresponding grammatical equivalent in French of course:

CE/C'/CECI/CELA + verb: "Ceci est à moi, cela est à toi." "C'est à moi."

verb + CECI/CELA: "Lisez ceci, ne lisez pas cela."

Of course there are exceptions with CE and C' and you could have a look here: https://www.francaisfacile.com/exercices/exercice-francais-2/exercice-francais-54501.php

In my opinion, it is tricky also because CE can be both demonstrative adjective and pronoun (please see: http://www.larousse.fr/dictionnaires/francais/ce/13947?q=ce#13787 and http://www.larousse.fr/dictionnaires/francais/ce/13946?q=ce#13786), so that's why people also get confused.

Sorry if my explanation is a bit convoluted but I am not very good at explanations, also I am not French mother tongue so, as a rule of thumb, I would always ask a native speaker with a good knowledge of grammar. Being Italian, I can say that there many similarities between French and Italian.

Sorry also for the uppercase, I am using it only to underline certain words, I am not shouting at anybody :D.


Cette fille can mean this girl or that girl.

Cette fille-ci means this girl.

Cette fille-là means that girl.

Hope this helps!

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