"They have put on their pants."

Translation:Ils ont mis leur pantalon.

March 11, 2018

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"Ils ont mis leur pantalon" was marked correct, but should it be? I'm picturing multiple men stuffing themselves in a single pair of pants.


Quirk of French-English translation. I had the same problem studying English. In English, we say They have put on their shirts because there are many shirts (and I was picturing each man putting many layers of shirts), whereas in French, we say Ils ont mis leur chemise because each man has one shirt.

There is no "most logical" rule here, they are just different and you have to get used to it.


Great explanation Amine !


In English we say they have put on their pants, because they are more than one [they, their], and because there are more than one, each of those people are putting on pants [plural]. The inquiry was valid, but the explanation wasn't enough to understand the question asked. I also would like to understand how multiple people get into one pair of pants. I thought the plurals had to be in agreement for the phrase to be correct. I have read this page and still haven't seen the answer. We expect French and English to be different- so no problems with that- but we are here to learn and if we still haven't understood, then we haven't learned. I would be very grateful if someone could offer an explanation please (& no offense intended towards anyone).


I am thinking that you could use the plural "pantalons" if you also change the "leur" to "leurs" as in Ils ont mis leurs pantalons. Is this not so?


Yes, it is. And it is accepted.


Think of it as "They have (each) put on their (pair of) pants."


But your english sentence would probably require a French translation of, perhaps: Ils ont chacun mis leur propre pantalon.


See the explanation by Amine (a French-speaker) below and you will see that those extra words are not necessary from a French language perspective.


How come you "donné un manteau" but they "mis leur pantalon" ?


You are confusing the English word "don" (to put on) with the French past participle of donner - "donné" - which means "gave" or "given".


I guess women don't wear "pantalon"?


This can be translated as "Elles ont mis leur pantalon" also as "they" is not specified in the context.


Thank you; I had another error when I tried for 'elles' and thought it was a gendered sentence.


how can a plural subject put on one pair of pants?


Excuse my bluntness but please read the thread before asking questions.
Merci ☺


She has a valid question. Pardon my bluntness, but if the person has already read the posts, telling them to do it again is in no way helpful. Sorry.


You might read my post above, instead of hers, I am accustomed to confrontation, but many folks just get discouraged when they experience it.

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