"Les perroquets ont de gros becs."

Translation:Parrots have large beaks.

March 30, 2018

27 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/W-Ruggles-Wolfe

Why is «bec» required to be singular for «Les oiseaux nettoient l'hippopotame avec leur bec», but plural here?

My understanding of the hippo sentence is that the singular is used because parrots have only one beak. https://forum.duolingo.com/comment/26748348

The parrots in this sentence still have only one beak, so what has changed?

Merci!

May 6, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/biscuitamericain

thank you R-W, I was too lazy to do all the typing, but wondered the same thing. or, if nothing has changed, as I suspect, is there some rule one can fall back upon?

July 26, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/ALLintolearning3

I think it is because many kinds of parrots all have big beaks. There are many kinds of beaks on many kinds of parrots.

The hippo sentence reminds me of the apple sentence in which "They eat an apple." but in French the meaning is that each of them eats an apple. So, there is actually more than one apple. Now, you see the difference with an action verb, that in French with a plural group, each can be doing it separately. So the singular is used in the hippo sentence to show that each bird of the group of birds is cleaning the hippo with its own beak. I guess if they used the plural of beaks in that sentence, they would be cleaning the hippo as a group, as if all their beaks would move at the same time.

August 2, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/TL70LDst

why isn't les perroquents_ont a required liaison? noirmally don't we liaise ils_ont?

March 31, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/DannoElMano

Edit: Pronoun liaisons are required, but plural noun liaisons are optional, from https://www.lawlessfrench.com/pronunciation/optional-liaisons/

April 3, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Dr.Foran01

...and why not "parakeets", which is an English word (derived from the French word) for a number of parrots?

May 12, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/W-Ruggles-Wolfe

Interesting question. Possibly because "parakeets" is a subtype?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parakeet

May 12, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/ALLintolearning3

That is a false friend. The French word "perroquet" (masculine word) looks like "parakeet", but no, it means "parrot." The word for "parakeet" is "perruche" (feminine word). https://dictionary.reverso.net/english-french/parrakeet

August 2, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/trashyboi1

parakeet in french is perruche. but yeah parakeet actually originated from perroquet

July 23, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/trashyboi1

Why is "Parrots have huge beaks" not accepted. Aren't "large" and "huge" the same thing?

Shouldn't DL at least remove "huge" from the word bank?

July 23, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/ALLintolearning3

No, "huge" is much bigger than "large" and would be similar to enormous, so it would be translated as "énormes." This is too big to make sense for the beaks of any birds, even parrots.

August 2, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Roody-Roo

Well. Maybe toucans.... Les toucans ont d'énormes becs!!!

April 28, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/lindamarsh7

parrots only have one BEAK ergo bec

May 7, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/ALLintolearning3

They each only have one beak, but in English we would have put beaks, so it is a difference between French and English that we need to learn.

August 10, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Karuna8063

I think I've missed something. I thought it would be DES not LES, since its talking about all parrots, not a specific group of parrots. Can someone help me get clearer about why they use LES in this case? thanks

August 9, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/ALLintolearning3

Yes, in English we use the indefinite form for a generalization of all parrots, but in French they use the definite form for a generalization of “all the parrots”. We just don’t view it the same as they do. So, when the French definite article appears at the beginning of sentence in particular, check if a generalization could be possible. https://www.thoughtco.com/introduction-to-french-articles-1368810 If there is a continue reading button, be sure to press it for all the information.

August 10, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Karuna8063

thanks, very helpful explanation as well as clear link

August 10, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/pakjim

Why 《de gros becs》 instead of 《les gros becs》?

September 8, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Roody-Roo

Des is here the plural of un.

If the entire sentence we're singular, it would be Le peroquet a un gros bec. If you make the whole thing plural, you have Les perroquets ont des gros becs.

Singular un --> plural des. Singular le --> plural les.

(The plural of "a/an" does not exist in English. So just get rid of it in the English sentence.)

One more thing - (in the French) When des is followed by an adjective before the noun, change des to de.

Putting it all together, you have the pluralised sentence,

  • Les perroquets ont de gros becs.
April 4, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/pakjim

C'est logique, merci.

April 4, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Roody-Roo

De rien. Oui, il est logique, mais très difficile !

This sentence may seem silly and awkward, but it's extremely rich in learning challenges. Really, it's one of the best lessons on the whole tree!

April 4, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Karuna8063

This is wonderfully clear. Thanks so much.

April 4, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Douglas754701

Pourquoi on utilise le mot "gros" en lieu du mot "grands"? Merci.

February 23, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/ALLintolearning3

On utilise le mot “gros” au lieu du mot “grands”, parce que les becs ne sont pas “tall” ou “long”, mais plutôt “wide” ou “large”.

February 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/Karuna8063

Thank you, I was wondering that too and your response is very helpful.

February 24, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/faraston3001

why do i hear 'les perroquets aiment les gros becs'? is it just me ?

May 23, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/ALLintolearning3

Sometimes, we hear what makes sense to us. Did you expect “leur gros bec” ? In French a plural subject often is followed by a singular which means “each their own big beak” or as we would put it “their big beaks”.

August 10, 2018
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