I think it should be accepted, though it's a bit formal compared to its actual usage in French. Gentlemen seems to be fairly accurate.
The point's been made. This is a good thread. Just conform, and remember that you're not wrong.
The reason why "Sirs" is not allowed? 'Sirs' and 'madams' used to be recognized as the plural forms. The use of ‘sirs’ peaked around the beginning of the 19th century.
Gentlemen it is.
I think even in English the plural of madam would be 'mesdames'. If I addressed a group of women as 'Madams' they would take offence as it would sound like they were a group of brothel-keepers would it not?!
There is debate about this in this discussion. I tend to agree with you, but currently Duo doesn't accept it. Feel free to report it if you run across it again.
I had 'Hello men' accepted which is fairly condescending to an Englishspeaker
That was my recommended answer and sounds very unnatural in American English at least. Sirs or Gentlemen sound much better.
I remember my first day in Paris after five years of high school French, and a friend wanted me to ask the concierge for the rest room. Do you think anyone explained to me why five minutes later the concierge was still laughing after I said “Ce gentilhomme désire savoir où est la salle de bains. “
Exactly! “This noble Lord...” And as ripcurlgirl says, you’ll only find the bathtub and bidet in a traditional “salle de bains. “ And a sink. No relief. That’s down the hall.
They do sound very similar but the beginning of messieurs sounds literally as it is written → like the word mess in English. On the other hand, the beginning of monsieur as no real equivalent English sound → sort of like "muh". Listen to them here:
The sound is a schwa, as in the word “le”...you’re very likely to hear “m’sieur.” The plural is an open è, like mais.
With this audio, I could not distinguish it...The difference is actually quite pronounced.
The slow audio seems fine (plural), but the regular speed sounds like the singular or somewhere in-between.
The issue seems to be "sirs" (not that I agree with Duo). See two discussion threads, currently near the top. I'd report it if you run across it again.
"Hello, sirs" should be accepted, as "Hello, sir" was accepted for the singular. Reported 27/10/18.
Thanks. :-) I did see, but I didn't find the explanation(s) satisfactory.
Did you ever watch a two-year-old on the brink of language acquisition? They call it "the terrible twos..." Really it's the miraculous twos, perfection of skills without teacher, text or test...Not without frustration, but the satisfaction will be all yours when you're done. Don't give up!
If 'Oui, Monsieur' can be translated as 'Yes Sir', why Duo rejects if 'Bonjour Messieurs' is translated as "Good morning Sirs" and requires "gentlemen" instead of Sirs?
Duolingo seems to insist that "bonjour" means "good morning" and not "good day" so must we assume that one should not say "bonjour" after mid-day?