It's "Ils" when one speaks of a group of men or even when it's a group of women with at least one man. "Elles" is used for a group comprised of all women.
Both Elles sont calmes and Ils sont calmes would translate to "They are calm". As we have no further context, in back translation, both should be accepted.
I'm so confused. When do i use "Ce/C'" vs "Elle/Il" "Elles/ils." I read the notes at the beginning and i thought I understood the rationale but I guess I don't. Can someone please help. Also, thank you Duo for adding this lesson. It is very needed.
When describing people and things with être in French, you usually can't use a personal subject pronoun like elle. Instead, you must use the impersonal pronoun ce, which can also mean "this" or "that". Note that ce is invariable, so it can never be ces sont.
These pronouns aren't interchangeable. The basic rule is that you must use ce when être is followed by any determiner—for instance, an article or a possessive adjective. Note that c'est should be used for singulars and ce sont should be used for plurals.
C'est un homme. — He's a man. / This is a man. / That is a man.
Ce sont des chats. — They're cats. / These are cats. / Those are cats . C'est mon chien. — It's my dog. / This is my dog. / That's my dog.
If an adjective, adverb, or both appear after être, then use the personal pronoun.
Elle est belle. — She is beautiful. (Or "It is beautiful.")
Il est très fort. — He is very strong. (Or "It is very strong.")
Ils sont calmes. — They are calm.
As you know, nouns generally need determiners, but one important exception is that professions, nationalities, and religions can act as adjectives after être. This is optional; you can also choose to treat them as nouns.
He is a doctor. — Il est médecin. / C'est un médecin.
However, c'est should be used when using an adjective to make a general comment about (but not describe) a thing or situation. In this case, use the masculine singular form of the adjective.
C'est normal ? — Is this normal?
Non, c'est étrange. — No, this is strange.
OLR, here is the link Ripcurlgirl got that information from: https://www.duolingo.com/skill/fr/Gallicism%3Ail-elle-OR-c-ce/tips-and-notes
Will, these links no longer work - they simply take you to the tree. To get to the tips and notes you need to click on the skill then click on the "lightbulb".
Good to know, thanks.
But Will posted the wrong link - it is:
His link still returns to the home page.
I think that is because you are on different versions of the tree. The old tree has the skill "Être / Avoir" whereas the new has the skill "Gallicism". There is still an ongoing A/B test where some users have the old tree, and some have the new, so whether you can access a certain skill URL most likely depends on whether you have it in your current tree version.
You have to use the web version (either on a computer or mobile browser) to have the Tips & Notes, unfortunately. On the web version, when you first click on a skill, there's a lightbulb icon, if the skill has T&N. If you click it, it will open the notes for that skill.
Is " Ce sont calmes " another correct translation for " They are calm "
I'm getting confused of the speaker , i mean I can't tell if it's saying il or ils . How can i determine which one the speakers saying ?
In this case, the verb will tell you:
- Il est calme.
- Ils sont calmes.
In other cases, look around the sentence for clues. They could also be complete homophones, in which case, context will tell you which one.
Are there notes before each excercise?? All i can do is the excercises and cant find anything to read..?
There are notes in some of the skills in the course. Look for the light bulb icon before you start an exercise.
Does anyone know what the rule is on pronouncing the final e or es of a word? Is there a slight euh sound at the end of both?
You don't pronounce the final E or ES of a word. The slight sound you hear is the product of having a slight southern French accent.
What is the difference between 'Ils sont calmes' and 'ce sont calmes'. They both mean the same thing in english, and we know that ils is a masculine plural form of il. Should using Ce and ils both be correct since we do not know if it is a group of men?