I've recently learned this one! If I understand correctly, in French, the article "the" (or another article) is needed most of the time. In English, the article "the" is sometimes dropped when it refers to something general or universal e.g. "People want peace" not 'The people want the peace" as in French 'Les gens veulent la paix".
It depends on the sentence.
Some sentences have "de la". This is a partitive article, which means "an undefined quantity of a mass thing". It's equivalent in meaning to "some" in English, but unlike "some", it is required: "J'ai de la pizza." = "I have (some) pizza."
The partitive articles are:
- masculine - du (this is the mandatory contraction of "de + le")
- J'ai du sel - I have (some) salt
- Il mange du porc - He eats (some) pork
- feminine - de la
- Elles commandent de la pizza - They are ordering (some) pizza
- Nous mangeons de la viande - We are eating (some) meat
- before a noun beginning with a vowel sound (masc or fem) - de l'
- Vous mettez de l'huile sur la salade - You are putting (some) oil on the salad
- Tu bois de l'eau - You drink (some) water
French generalities also use the definite article:
- Elle n'aime pas le chocolat - She does not like chocolate
- Les ours adorent le miel - Bears love honey
- Ces enfants aiment la lecture - These children like reading
Those are a couple of cases where you might see "le" or "la" but no "the" in the English translation. There are some others, for example when they're used as pronouns, but you'll learn about those later on.
There isn't a preposition between the conjugated verb "aller" and an infinitive verb. It is just the way the verb structure is. Specific prepositions follow certain verbs and in some cases no preposition follows.
Just remember conjugated aller + infinitive verb = near future
Je vais acheter des livres.
Nous allons visiter le musée.
Tu vas faire des courses.
Here's my understanding re: near time and the future tense.
The contributors haven't (yet) written the notes for this skill, so this might be incomplete. Keep checking for skill notes, I've read that they will be completed at some point.
Near past: (subject) + (venir de, present tense) + (verb infinitive)
- «Ils viennent de vendre leurs vêtements» = "They
justsold their clothing"
- «Tu viens de faire un chose importante» = "You
justdid an important thing"
Near future: (subject) + (aller, present tense) + (verb infinitive)
- «Je vais lire un livre» "I am
going toread a book"
- «Il va nous donner une pomme» = "He is
going togive us an apple"
Future: (subject) + (verb, future tense)
- «Nous finirons de manger» = "We
- «Il ira seul» = "He
- «Comme ça, vous aurez le temps de lire» = "That way, you
willhave the time to read"
You've been around for awhile so you know that Duo formerly accepted "will" as a variant of the near future. That has been a disservice. "Will" is invariably future tense, whereas using "going to" (aller + infinitive) is near future. If you habitually translate near future expressions using "will", then this may come as a shock.
What is Duo’s source for its ersatz rule that "going to" is the near future in English? Here is the British Council's explanation of the difference between "will" and "going to," for instance, and it makes many distinctions, but says nothing about nearness in time: https://learnenglish.britishcouncil.org/es/english-grammar/talking-about-future Here are a couple of sentences from the Times that directly contradict Duo: "This has not happened but maybe it will in the near future" and "The way this will be dealt with will be agreed in the near future." For something a little more literary, here’s William Goldman in The Princess Bride: "'Why do you wear a mask and hood?' 'I think everybody will in the near future,' was the man in black's reply. 'They're terribly comfortable.'" Or an article from the Scientific American: "Even if you didn't notice beer price fluctuations following those years—2014 and 2017—consumers probably will in the near future." Or Forbes: "Technical capabilities, which were once a way for financial advisors to differentiate themselves, will in the near future be totally commoditized" Or this from the Congressional Record: "My hope is we will this afternoon have some additional debate on this amendment." Or Martin Luther King Jr.: "Who will this morning?" French and English grammar do not directly mirror each other, and Duo does a disservice when it tries to pretend that the English "going to" has the same near future meaning as the French "aller." It simply does not, as its use by educated speakers and writers clearly shows. We’re here to learn French, not to have to apply fictitious rules of English grammar, and Duo’s made-up rules of English only impede our proper learning of French.