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Some confusion around "is" and when to use "est" and when not.

Example 1: Elle mange une orange " She is eating an orange"

Example 2: La femme est riche "The woman is rich"

I'm not sure I understand why Example 1, we do not use "est" however, example 2 we do?

Any assistance or clarification would be helpful. Thank you all in advance.

February 21, 2018



French does not have an 'is ....ing" tense in the same way as English. Just use the present tense "elle mange" / she eats.

In your 2nd example, "is" is the only verb as "rich" is an adjective.

[deactivated user]

    The closest way to translate "be + ing" is the form "être entrain de".

    Je mange du poulet.

    Je suis entrain de manger du poulet.

    Je fais mes devoirs.

    Je suis entrain de faire mes devoirs


    Be careful "entrain" means cheerfulness, you have to write "en train". Je suis en train de te répondre. And be reassured, many french pupils make this mistake.


    Pierre, tu réponds toujours avec entrain. :)


    Hey, bonjour Marc, tu es revenu de ton expédition au pôle sud sans ravitaillement, sans assistance et sans liaison satellite ?


    Hahaha ! Je suis en fait revenu de trois mois en Turquie (c'était assez semblable à ce que tu décris), donc je me remets à l'apprentissage du turc avec Duolingo, maintenant que je ne suis plus en contact quotidien avec cette langue, pour ne rien oublier.


    Au fait, il était possible d'écrire : "Je suis en train, en train de te répondre avec entrain" (I am cheerfully replying to you in a train).


    That helps a lot. Thanks Judith.


    In English, we have the continuous verb -ing. -Ing is only used in English and is to show someone doing something during that moment. Same goes with -s at the end of the verbs.

    He is eating chicken right now

    He eats chicken right now

    You will not see -ing in use in most/any languages. In French, you just go by the conjugation by the person.



    Tu manges du poulet


    Tu est manges du poulet


    Please note there is a present continuous in Spanish - for example Estoy comiendo el pollo (I am eating the chicken) and it also occurs in Italian, for example Non sto capendo niente (I am understanding nothing). It also occurs in Portuguese estou trabalhando ( I am working).


    Oh, I see! Thank you


    I agree with Judith. She is eating an orange and She eats an orange are correct for English, I believe "is eating" is called progressive in English grammar. In French you just say Elle mange une orange. Est is is used for things like She is a girl, She is rich, etc.


    In example one mange can mean is eating, so that would be why you do not use "est".

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