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"He is big, even though he eats vegetables."

Translation:Il est gros, alors qu'il mange des légumes.

March 17, 2013



Small thing: Why does is "alors que" correct, but the mouse-over for "even though" is "bien que"?


difference between "alors que" and "bien que" is tiny.


So, shouldn't they both be accepted? "Bien que" is marked incorrect?


My translation "Il est gros, bien qu'il mange des légumes." was accepted.


I answered with "bien que" and it was correct


i answered " Il est grand, même s'il mange des légumes."


But it is not, because to respect the meaning of the whole sentence, "grand" (=tall) makes no sense.


I know, but in this sentence, "tall" is not the meaning of "big".


Why not? I assumed it was making fun of vegetarians. It's a common enough thing to hear :).

[deactivated user]

    This is a very basic question, but why do you use 'des' here, as opposed to 'les'?


    Des is used for general, les vegetables means the vegetables of a place. Mange les vegetables would mean that you eat all vegetables of the world.


    That confuses me. In a different sentence the same question occured and there it was said the the definite article les is used for general statements.


    Yes, general statements use definite articles:

    • vegetables are good for you = les légumes sont bons pour toi


    If I understand correctly, the definite article is used for a category such as vegetables as in your sentence "les légumes sont bons pour toi". For me "vegetables" is being used as a category in "he is big, even though he eats vegetables". What is the distinction?


    After an action verb (to eat, in this instance), "vegetables" is only the plural of "a/one vegetable", because each time you eat (or plant or cook...) vegetables, you only eat more than one.

    "des" as the plural of "un/une" means exactly that: more than one.

    Even though English does not have a plural article for "a/an", French does have a plural indefinite article and it is required.


    • vegetables as a category of things is "les légumes" (en général).
    • vegetables as more than one thing is "des légumes".


    I believe that if you were you say, "I like vegetables", it would be "j'aime les légumes."


    No, "il mange les légumes" would be "he eats the vegetables" (specific, those on the table).


    when you are specific to the vegetables you are eating (sort of pointing these vegetables on tables) you are definitive and you use "les". here as they are referring to vegetables and not being specific about while vegetables, its indefinite and you use "des"


    I don't think that's quite right. SiteSurf said the following (above) (quoting the entire comment):

    "After an action verb (to eat, in this instance), "vegetables" is only the plural of "a/one vegetable", because each time you eat (or plant or cook...) vegetables, you only eat more than one.

    "des" as the plural of "un/une" means exactly that: more than one.

    Even though English does not have a plural article for "a/an", French does have a plural indefinite article and it is required.


    vegetables as a category of things is "les légumes" (en général).
    vegetables as more than one thing is "des légumes"."


    les is the, des is some, or if there isn't a definite determinant then its also des. like, "he eats vegetables," theres nothing in front of vegetables, so it is 'des'. the french always use something in front of a noun, in english we often drop it. (only exception i know of is naming someone's profession, Il est advocate/ prof/ medicin)


    'des' is - to use the technical word - an 'indefinite' article. It's the same difference as between 'the' and 'a': an apple -> we don't know which the apple -> a specific ('definite') apple.

    des legumes -> some veg (we don't know which) les legumes -> the veg (specific, 'definite' veg)


    Gros=fat/big in an overweight way. Grand should be correct because we don't know if he is just big=grand or fat.


    Now, please tell me: who ever gets taller by eating fries?


    Now, tell me where it's said that he eats fries.


    Sorry for the mishap! (ahah)

    Once again: It is said that eats vegetables, but in spite of that he is "big".

    If you say "he is tall (= grand) even though he eats vegetables", it suggests that vegetables can hinder growth.

    If you say "he is big/fat (= gros) even though he eats vegetables", it suggests that eating vegetables should have made him slimmer than he actually is.

    Now, please tell me which version is the most probable.


    The problem with this is that grand≠tall in all cases. If i would say "il est un grand garçon" for example, then i would not mean that he is fat. I would probably mean that he has/is (a) grown up or even a mature kid. Im from france, and i would say that if gros is used, then you would have to state that the person is overweight. In english you can be big because youre fat, but you can also be big because youre very strong and have big muscles. You see my point? Why not just change the english word from big to fat?

    • He is a big boy (now) = c'est un grand garçon (maintenant)(sensible, mature)
    • He is a tall boy = c'est un garçon grand (size in height)
    • He is a fat boy = c'est un garçon obèse/gras (overweight)

    Since "big" is very ambiguous, you have to interpret it as "overweight" in the context of this sentence, and then translate it to "gros".


    But many many people will tell you that meat makes you grow tall, not vegetables. That's what I always heard anyway!

    • 1473

    More people have died from not eating than from eating fries. So if a young person eats fries, they will most likely get taller.


    Shouldn't it allow me to say les légumes because it is talking about vegetables in general not some specific vegetables?


    look at this in singular: il mange une carotte = he eats a/one carrot

    plural: il mange des carottes / des légumes = he eats (some) carrots / vegetables

    "des" is an indefinite article, plural of "un" or "une" (= a/one)


    I used "Il est grand, malgré qu'il mange des légumes". I think my translation should be accepted. I'm not going to report it, because I'm not sure.


    "Malgré" translates to "despite". It is a preposition and it is pretty much always followed by a noun, as in "despite his age", or "despite her status". Using "malgré que" in this case would translate to "despite that he eats vegetables"..

    You could use "bien que" here (il est gros, bien qu'il mange des legumes), but you have to follow that with the subjunctive. Unfortunately, I think this early in the lesson plans Duo's servers may just blow up if you do that (even though 3rd person subjunctive and 3rd person indicative are exactly the same)... :-P

    Hope this helps!


    and "malgré que" is still considered as incorrect by the french academy ("malgré" is used with "que" only in the locution "malgré qu'il en aie" (more or less "even if he was reticent"))


    Shouldn't it allow me to say les légumes because it is talking about vegetables in general not some specific vegetables?


    "des" légumes is the plural of "un légume".

    This is not a generality in the French sense of the word.

    The meaning of this sentence is: "he eats (some) vegetables", not "he eats (all) vegetables".

    A generality is something like this: "Les légumes sont bons pour la santé" = "Vegetables are good for health".


    Is "Il est gros, alors qu'il mange seuls légumes" correct?


    No, because "seuls" is an adjective. If you mean "only vegetables", you have to use "seulement (adverb) des légumes".


    Are contractions, such as "qu'il" required? Why is "que il" not accepted? In english, contractions are optional.


    "qu'il" is not a contraction, but an elision (drop the vowel and replace it by an apostrophe), required when "que" is in front of a word starting with a vowel sound, with the aim to ease pronunciation.


    Strange that it does not allow 'grand', which also means large or well-made. The way I see it, big does not imply fat. A vegetarian bodybuilder might be big, even huge, but not fat. I think 'grand' should be a valid answer or the sentence should be made clearer. It is very ambiguous.


    Why is alors correct, but tandis is not?


    Here, there is no notion of time but an opposition so "alors que" is preferable to "tandis que" which may not be understood the same way (more about time).


    I used "quand même" and it wasn't accepted.. why ?


    could you give your whole sentence to see whether something else were wrong?


    Il est gros, quand même il mange des légumes


    your sentence has one error: "il est gros, même quand il mange des légumes".

    then it means "even when",whereas "although" would better translate in "même si".

    "il est gros, même s'il mange des légumes".

    Now, probably Duo was not expecting that but it is indeed a very good translation.


    so am I correct in thinking within that sentence: "il est gros, meme quand il mange des legumes." the use of meme which until now has been used to mean 'same' (an adjective) it now becomes an adverb and takes on the meaning of 'even' meaning that 'meme quand' means 'even when'....?

    or 'meme si'il' which would mean 'even if he...?'


    yes, that's right.


    It also accepts "Il est gros, alors même qu'il mange des légumes", even though this is not the expected answer. Is there something wrong with it?


    I wrote "Il est grand, même qu'il mange des légumes." and it is wrong, why?


    I just used "Il est grand, même s'il mange des légumes" and it was accepted.


    Considering the actual meaning of this sentence, ie the fact that the man is quite fat in spite of his balanced diet, "grand" would make the sentence meaningless in French:

    The back translation of "il est grand, même s'il mange des légumes" is "he is tall...". Therefore, it would finally mean that vegetables were supposed to stop his growth, which is a nonsense.

    To sum it up, Duo was wrong to consider "grand" as a valid translation of "big" in this context.


    Is "alors" always followed by "que"?


    no, "alors" means "then" or "so" or "therefore".

    "alors que" introduces a subordinate clause (like: bien que, pendant que, etc.)


    How would "bien que" work in this sentence, because it was accepted on my computer


    Why "alors que"?


    "alors que" expresses a contradiction: the guy is big/fat and he should not be, given the fact that he eats vegetables (and nothing else?...)


    Why can't I use cependent instead of alors que or bien que?


    "cependant" is an adverb and not a conjunction.

    In other words, "cependant" can modify a verb or a whole sentence, but not introduce a subordinate clause.

    so you would need to change the construction to include cependant:

    "Il est gros. Cependant, il mange des légumes."


    Isn't "cependant que" a conjunction that could be used like "alors que" or "bien que", or would it be more like "pendant que" or "tandis que?"


    Why is grand not accepted but gras is??


    Two of three translations were the same, so I marked both "correct" answers and I was marked incorrect.


    Happened to me too. Then when i searched, i got the answer : http://laits.utexas.edu/tex/gr/pro3.html as tall is adjective, the right form to use is "il es" and not "c'est"


    So "alors que" means both "even though" and "whereas"?


    Yes, and "while."


    true, though for while, I'd say "tandis que" or maybe "pendant que"


    can you use même que ?


    no, "même" que is not proper French.

    you have to use "même si" -> même s'il mange des légumes


    Why was c'est wrong?


    "c'est" replaces "il est" in front of a modified noun, not an adjective


    I realize that, "les" translates to "the" but SOMETIMES it is omitted in English translations of French. Why do I HAVE to use "DES" here?


    Because it is the plural of "un légume".

    Remember that in English "a/an" has no plural (although you may use "some")


    I'm sorry, I still don't understand. Actually, I would have put "des" because I understand that to be (more) correct but I am fairly certain that I've seen examples on duo, similar, to this sentence where "les" was accepted. I love the French language but it sure does confuse me a lot! :)


    You probably refer to something like "I love vegetables" which translates to "J'adore les légumes". The reason for using "les" in this case is related to the verb: aimer, adorer, détester, haïr, apprécier, préférer are appreciation verbs which are constructed with definite articles le, la, l', les to form a generality.

    • I eat vegetables = je mange des légumes (some, more than one)

    • I like vegetables = j'aime les légumes (all of them)


    YES!!! An explanation that makes sense!!!!! Merci beaucoup!!!!


    Yes, but wait. There will be something around the corner to mess us up again! ;)


    Merci! C'est plus clair, maintenant.


    Hints are useless for this one when asked to translate. I got it right though as I came across this before as listening question.


    Am I the only one who thought you could say: "Il est gros, quoi qu'il mange des légumes" ? Please explain why this is not acceptable...


    "quoique" can be used as a synonym of "bien que" or "alors que", to mean an opposition.

    "quoi que" (in two words) has a different meaning: "quoi que tu dises, j'approuve" = "whatever you say, I agree"


    Aha! Very clear, thanks for the explanation, Sitesurf!


    I wrote il est grand...and the correct answer should be il est gras???. I don't understand. Could you explain me.


    Your question has been answered to a number of times here.

    Considering the actual meaning of this sentence, ie the fact that the man is quite fat in spite of his balanced diet, "grand" would make the sentence meaningless in French:

    The back translation of "il est grand, même s'il mange des légumes" is "he is tall...". Therefore, it would finally mean that vegetables were supposed to stop his growth, which is a nonsense.

    To sum it up, "grand" cannot be a valid translation of "big" in this context.


    The problem here for me is translating from English to French. If it were French to English, and the word "gros" were used, then I would say, "He is fat." But, going from English to French is more problematic. When we say someone is "big" in English, we can mean that he is tall or that he is fat, or both. Sometimes when you say, "He's a big guy," it's a more polite way of saying that he's fat. In this case, translating from English to French, to say "Il est grand" wouldn't be a mistake. To avoid confusion, I'd suggest that future iterations use the word "fat" in English. I will report this also (as a suggestion.)


    Well-articulated. I had exactly the same issue with this exercise. I guessed, because of the reference to his diet, that Duo wanted "gros" (fat) rather than "grand" (big), but it was only a guess. What if the statement was about a six foot six inch (about two meters) 220 pound (100 kilos) vegetarian athlete? He would be "big" without being "fat."


    Yes, that too, but I had a momentary lapse of reason and couldn't think of how to say that big-but-not-fat thing in English.


    I think you could guess the meaning of "big" with the context given here.

    In this sentence there is a contradiction (though) between "being big" and "eating vegetables".

    You can probably derive from "eating vegetables" that this person has a balanced diet, which should keep him thin/skinny. Yet, he is "big".

    Therefore, you can also understand that "big" stands for the contrary of "mince (thin/skinny)", ie "gros".


    Maybe it's an American thing, but when I think vegetarian, I think healthy, but not necessarily skinny. There are vegetarian athletes, and I mean like rugby players, not just marathoners. I'm not trying to be argumentative, it's just that when an American says someone is big, it can't be taken for granted that they mean he is fat. I would also say that a five foot ten inch body-builder who is 250 pounds of pure muscle is "big."


    Sure, but he doesn't eat veggies only, does he?


    Body builders usually don't, but plenty of athletes, including some NFL players (American football) do.


    I understand why "grand" is wrong, but I wasn't expecting DL to throw out "gras" as a correction! So what's the difference between "gras" and "gros/se"? And does it have a feminine version of "grasse"?


    "gros, grosse, gros, grosses" means "voluminous", and for people it means "overweight".

    "gras, grasse, gras, grasses" means "fat".


    Big should be grand, and gras would be fat. Don't confuse us with PC, Duo...


    grand = tall

    big = gros

    fat = gras


    Not really true, Big≠Gros. // From france.


    Can 'large' be used for people being 'big'? Duo only hinted he was too heavy (gros). I used 'Il est grand alors [error, même] qu'il mange [error, les] légumes'. Grand translates to big, but usually tall. Gros= overweight. Gras= 'fat'. What about just 'well built', meaning body weight big but not overweight i.e. not thin? Think muscle, etc, not height or fat. I think that there is a faux friend issue for us with 'gros' as we say 'gross' (slang?) for disgusting, etc. Patently, grosses bises is not meant to express revulsion! I may be just overtired but in research also learnt 'Bien à vous'!


    Does alors que require the subjunctive?


    why is it " même s'il mange" instead of "même qu'il mange"?


    "même si" = even if or even though


    If he is 'gros' then the English translation should be "he is fat" no? Because 'big' is grand... am I wrong?


    No, "grand" is "tall," and "gros" is "big." It's confusing because in English "big" can mean "fat," "tall" or both.


    answers 2 and 3 were identical on my computer, so I chose both. which one is correct?


    Teo options are exactly the same but one is wrong????


    Mine shows the first and last choices to be the same...i keep checking to see what i missed, but they are identical.


    Il est gros même si il mange des légumes.


    Why was this marked wrong? Il est gros, lorsqu'il mange des légumes.

    what is the difference between lorsque and aloes que ?


    Does your sentence mean anything relevant in English? Because in French, it does not.

    "Lorsque" means when, whenever, as soon as, from the moment that...

    There is a conflicting situation in this sentence: this person is fat but it is not because he only eats fat and sugar. So, he is fat even though/if he eats vegetables. This is the meaning of "alors que", or of "bien que/alors que/même si".


    First and third choice are identical


    I had 2 identical sentences in a list of 3. Marked me wrong because I chose 1. Couldn’t report because both were exactly the same.

    <h1>1 and #3 are the same correct answer</h1>


    Grand is actually the translation for big...but is not taken as correct


    No, for human beings, "grand(e)" is "tall", people's size in height only.

    "Big" is about volume as well, so it does not work.


    I said "Il est grand, alors qu'il mange des legumes" and was marked wrong. I'm sorry, but the meaning of "BIG" here is ambiguous. I interpreted Big to mean Tall (Grand) vs Large/Fat (Gros).


    Why not "tandis que"?


    Il est grand, alors qu'il mange des legumes

    • 1473

    How can I tell when "grand" meand "bid" and when it doesn't?


    With people "grand" is a bit tricky, but it usually does not mean "big" (except for "mon grand frère" = my big brother)

    • Bruno est grand = Bruno is tall
    • Bruno est un grand homme = Bruno is a great man.

    Still with people "gros" is a 3D measure, usually not from muscles but from fat.

    • Bruno est gros parce qu'il mange trop de sucre et de gras = Bruno is fat because he eats too much sugar and fat.

    If a person has heavy bones and muscles, he will be described as "costaud", "robuste", "fort". If a person is very muscular but thin, he will be described as "musclé" or "athlétique".

    For women,

    • a big/fat woman will be "une femme forte",
    • a great woman will be "une femme remarquable"
    • a tall woman will be "une femme grande" or "une grande femme".

    • 1473

    Thank you. And sorry for the typo's.


    Wow! How many different meanings does "alors que" have? So far in this series of exercises, it means "while," "whereas," and "even though." These all have very different meanings, and I am now very confused.


    How many meanings does "alors" have and what are they? It seems to be used differently in various sentences.


    I agree. See my comment above yours.


    why isn't "mais pourtant" appropriate here? (instead of "alors que")


    Two times the same sentence, as the right answer, and still choose one of them wrong

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