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"Les cravates des hommes sont rouges."

Translation:The men's ties are red.

March 28, 2018

24 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Hens42
  • 1111

What's wrong with "The ties of the men are red"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/julienne916714

I think it's ridiculous that this form of the possessive is not accepted. Yes, it's a bit awkward, but it's also a completely valid translation -- and we're here to practice our French, not to have our English corrected by a pedantic bird.

Beyond that, if anyone watches football/soccer they will know that it is completely standard among commentators (English and American alike) to use the "x of the y" formulation -- the pass of Firmino, the header of Salah, the deflection of the goalkeeper... you get my point. Does it sound a little unnatural? Yup. Is it still correct English and "usual" in this widely watched arena? Yup.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ripcurlgirl

Although it is indeed a faithful literal translation, we don't really structure possession sentences like that in English.
We say "My son's ball" not "The ball of my son", which is how it would be written in French → "Le ballon de mon fils".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Hens42
  • 1111

Duo likes literal translations unless it's too awkward or unusual. In this case I would say that both versions are almost equally good.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ripcurlgirl

Yes, unless it is unnatural in the given language and I argue that this point stands true here.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/xMira_

Well, for weather it said "it is hot outside and humid." instead of "it is hot and humid outside" so...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ripcurlgirl

And both of those structures are natural in English.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/xMira_

No it's not, lol. Can you imagine saying "It is hot outside and humid"? The only way I could imagine it is saying "It is hot outside" and then someone else saying "and humid." Or like, an afterthought. "It's hot outside... and humid."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/krista189497

Ripcurlgirs... the ties of some men would not be too much off? to say in English...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/n6zs
  • 2277

It is not "some men"--just the possessive form of men. "Des" can be used as the plural of "un/une", but here it shows possession in the plural form: les cravates des hommes = the men's ties. These are the two completely different meanings of "des".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/n6zs
  • 2277

Duo doesn't "like" literal translations unless you can't come up with a natural expression in standard English. While "the ties of the men" is literal and it is grammatically correct, it is not standard in this instance although it is allowed. Note that there are obviously variations where one may indicate possession by saying "of the xxx" and there may be expressions where that is even preferred. But these two variations are not equally used. One or the other of them will always be more idiomatic (natural) based on the circumstance. Non-native speakers may not be aware of what is natural in everyday discourse.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Chaterlaine

It might depend on one's age. When I was in grade school the teachers discouraged using the apostrophe s as being a bit low class. By now it is standard and the way I was taught and Duo likes is a touch pretentious. As several have pointed out, both are correct and both should be accepted. As should my translation of cravates as "neckties."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/n6zs
  • 2277

The position of the apostrophe depends on the noun, whether it is singular or plural.

  • le livre du garçon = the boy's book (boy is singular)
  • les livres des garçons = the boys' books (boys is plural, so the apostrophe follows the "s").
  • le cravate d'homme = the man's tie (man is singular)
  • les cravates des hommes = the men's ties (men is plural, so the apostrophe comes before the "s").

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Phrontistery

I wrote: "The men's neckties are red" and it was marked as incorrect. I reported it because "necktie" is accepted in other sentences for "cravate."


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/krista189497

the ties of some men or the men's ties.....both should be accepted....I think the ties of the men, or the ties of men should also score a correct answer... am I hair splitting?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/n6zs
  • 2277

But it is not "... of some men". You may have the impression that "des" is "some". That is often not correct and it is not correct here. "Des hommes" (here) indicates something that is possessed by men (plural). Don't confuse this "des" with the "des" which represents the plural of "un/une". In that case, there is no counterpart in English: un homme = a man, des hommes = men.

  • les cravates des hommes = the men's ties

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TarekH.1

Why is it "The men's ties are red, and not the man's tie is red...


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Hens42
  • 1111

Both are plural. It's 'des hommes' and 'les cravates'


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/arandaneri

My issue here is with the pronunciation of the word "cravates" the men's voice sounds like CRA-va-tes (three syllables and the first syllable sounds stronger) while the female voice sounds like cra-VATES (only two syllables -and stresses the second syllable)..??? Which one is correct?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/n6zs
  • 2277

The male voice uses a different accent similar to what you would find in the southwest of France. It is normal.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Brandon869588

How would you say "the man's ties" vs "the men's ties"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MichalisKa15

Des hommes: Does it mean both 'the men's' and 'the man's'?

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