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  5. "Il a des dizaines de livres …


"Il a des dizaines de livres anglais."

March 15, 2013



"Douzaine" is dozen, while "dizaine" means "about ten," right? So, the more literal translation would be "He has tens of English books." Not a very common thing to say in English, but not unheard of. I'm think the Duolingo translation is probably better here, but I'm not 100% sure.


You're right on all fronts. When used in speach, dozen is the best translation. If being used in math, tens is right. E.g. the tens column/place, round to the tens etc...


English speakers also say things like, "tens of hundreds of books." Would that translate to "des dizaines de cents de livres?"


I've never heard "tens of hundreds" as that would be in the thousands (ten hundred is a thousand). Tens of hundreds would be des disaines de centaines. If you wanted to say tens of thousands, it would be des dizaines de milliers.


I agree with elliotforhan that "dozens" is better, just want to add that I put "tens" to play it safe and it was also accepted as an answer.


The proper usage of des/de/du/d', etc. is still really confusing to me, (as is the proper usage of pour, à, au, en, etc.) Why is it "de livres" here, rather than "des livres"? Thank you in advance.


I'm also struggling with this, any tips?


Because any time you quantify something, like: I have lots of friends, I have hundreds of dollars, there are many oranges, etc., you need to use "de" or "d'", which stands for the "of" in the sentence. It will become second nature as you progress, c'est promis.


"English books", if said in (at least, american) english, would imply "textbooks regarding the use and study of the English language" not "books of all topics written in english" which the sentence seems to be saying. I don't know why it rejected my answer, "tens of books in english"


I think the meaning in the French is "books from England" or "books from Britain".

The literal translation of the French to the English does not translate to what you have said, "tens of books in english". It doesn't mean that. It simply says "English books", nothing more.


I'm sorry but what does "tens of" mean? A dozen? I've never heard that before and I'm very confused by this sentence...


"To have tens of objects" means that the subject has so many such objects that if you were to group all the objects into groups of ten, there would be exactly or more than two such groups. That is, if you were to divide to the number of objects by ten, the resultant number is greater than or equal to two. It is most often used to say that the subject has many such objects, regardless of whether the subject actually has that amount of objects.

I agree that "dozen" is more often used to express a similar notion of a large quantity, but here the literal translation requires the use of "tens".

Have you ever heard someone say "tens of hundreds of dollars", or something similar? That might help you.


i believe i have heard someone say "tens of hundreds of dollars" but so rarely that the phrase doesn't exactly make sense to me. but your response was very helpful to me. thank you!


Do the French not use dozens, such as a dozen donuts, or a dozen eggs, or is that an American thing?


If dizaines can be translated into "tens" or "about ten" I wonder why Duo didn't accept my answer of "He has about ten English books"


That would be "Il a une dizaine de livres anglais."

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