I got the audio question. Why could it not be mangent-ils? Doesn't that sound the same? Thanks.
The two sentences sound identical. I have added the plural version to the list of homophones and it will be accepted for "type what you hear" exercises once staff gets around to acting on it.
"MANGE-T-IL des légumes ( singular") and "MANGENT-ILS des légumes (plural)", the prononciation of those two sentences is strictly the same in french ! So, the two translations are correct .
I tried to report this error, but Duo has disabled reporting for this kind of mistake. We can only hope a moderator reads this thread and makes the necessary change.
Surely this can be translated as " Does he eat some vegetables?" but the programme marks that as incorrect.
Notes that "des" (here) is the plural of "une". Some have the idea that "des" is "some", but that is not always the case. There is no counterpart for the plural indefinite article (a/an) in English. So by inserting "some", you are invoking a different meaning of the word. The "some" implied in your sentence is almost always ignored in English. https://www.thoughtco.com/du-de-la-des-1368977
Because it is not "any vegetables". "Des légumes" = vegetables, where "des" is the plural of "une". There is no corresponding word in English for this.
OK. So how would one say "Does he eat any vegetables?" or "Is he eating any vegetables"?
Why can't I say "Is he eating some vegetables?" ? Surely it's translated the same way.
I thought the same as you, but in English there is a difference between Does he eat vegetables? (habitually, usually) and Is he eating vegetables? (now, at the moment). The French sentence could mean either, of course, and without context Duo should accept either. You should report it.
Because the English is almost always "Is he eating any vegetables?"
But Duo might not accept that either, based on other comments. It's correct, though, to use "any" where it's des légumes
Inanimate things cannot eat vegetables. An odd context, where you're talking about an animal of unknown gender, then OK, but in general you'd want to translate il as "he".
where you're talking about an animal of
The gender of a particular animal could well be known by the speaker who, therefore, uses "il" intentionally.
In such a case, in English, the speaker might use "he" or "it" depending on their own preferred usage when referring to an animal.
It means absolutely nothing - it is there for the sake of euphony only. Mange-il is thought to sound awkward as there would be a forced liaison - sounding like "mon jil". Mange-t-il is a far clearer and more pleasant sound.
It means that is sounds good.
From greek roots eu-phonos eu: good, well phonos: sound
Wouldn't it be, "Does he eat some vegetables"? You have the des in there because he ate some vegetables not all of the vegetables in the world. In this case I feel like it would be Mange-t-il l'legumes? I could be wrong but I wasn't sure this was right.
You can't say "l'légumes" as you are using the singular definite article with a plural noun → it would need to be "les légumes". This question would be asking if he eats "those specific" vegetables.
Remember, des is the plural of un / une → the indefinite articles. So this question is just enquiring if he eats vegetables in general. The inclusion of the word des is necessary in the French sentence but its translation (as "some") is superfluous in the English sentence.
Don't get into the habit of using "some" for "des". It is only the plural form of "une". There is no corresponding word in English for it. While "some" may occasionally work, it is almost always ignored in English. It does not mean "some of them" or "a portion of them". It only refers to an undetermined amount. See here: https://www.thoughtco.com/du-de-la-des-1368977
One method pf creating a question is to invert the subject-verb order. In English, we can see this in: It's brown/Is it brown? In French, we can see this in: Il mange des légumes/Mange-t-il des légumes? (The "t" in the French question is simply to make it sound better. It doesn't have real meaning.)
To determine plurals, listen to the article preceding the noun. "Des" is the plural of "une/un". So "des légumes" = vegetables (plural).
I translated it into “he eats vegetables?” And got it wrong, any reason why?
It should be a question. It should be written in the standard form of a question.
Why is "des" used here to indicate generality instead of "les"?
My understanding is that French uses "tge" definitive article when indicating a generality.
i.e. the question being asked is if the person eats vegetables, not whether they eat some vegetables.
"Des" does not indicate generality. It is the plural form of "un/une". There is no counterpart for that in English. While some people feel they need to have an English word to put there and use "some", it is almost always ignored in English. I.e., "des légumes" = vegetables. https://www.thoughtco.com/du-de-la-des-1368977
Hello Liam299257, we have , here, an interrogative sentence with a subject inversion : " mange-t-il ?" In french the interrogative sentence can have 2 forms: - " Est-ce qu'il mange ?" or " Mange-t-il ?" In the second form, the "-t-" ( between the verbe ended by the vowel "-e-" and the suject "il" (beginning with the vowel "-i-") is just here to allow a good and easy pronunciation : You cannot say : " Mange il ?" because there is what is called a "hiatus" made by "e" followed with "i", it is unpronouncable ! The consonant "-t-" allows the prononciation withut hiatus: Some examples : " Chante-t-il ?" , " Pleure-t-il ?, "Ira-t-il ?".... (Sorry for my poor English level !)