"Il a su comment manger sa nourriture."

Translation:He has known how to eat his food.

3/22/2013, 7:55:01 PM

10 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/n6zs
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Aside from this most unusual sentence (!), the use of "comment" seems contrary to the use of "savoir" as "to know how" to do something...savoir faire qqc. Lawless briefly mentions this: http://french.about.com/od/vocabulary/a/comment.htm and http://french.about.com/od/grammar/a/savoir.htm

So I am wondering why we see "comment" used in this context. It feels wrong as if it has crept in because of the English use of "to know how". Comments from francophones welcome!

2/9/2014, 12:44:17 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/FisherLiz

I wonder if it is simply the same difference as in English - to know how to do something is knowledge of the skill of doing the thing, but not necessarily doing it, whereas knowing to do something is knowing that you have to do it now, this minute. "Savoir faire quelque chose" vs. "Savoir comment faire quelque chose"?I agree that "Savoir" is much less often followed by "comment. . ." than "know" is followed by "how to. . .", but is it something like this?

6/1/2014, 11:02:27 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/n6zs
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In the link regarding savoir above, Lawless gives the example of Je ne sais pas nager = I don't know how to swim. The notion is that the French does not require anything that translates directly to "how" to convey this meaning. In the link regarding comment above, Lawless says specifically that "to know how to do something" is savoir faire quelque chose. There is no comment there. So my question stands, why is comment used in this sentence? Waiting for a French native to answer! Thanks in advance.

6/2/2014, 12:39:36 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/FisherLiz

I understand - I await French-speaking advice too!

6/2/2014, 11:48:03 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/Jacko385437
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Every French teacher I've had since 10 years ago (all of them actually French minus 1 of them) has always taught me that you don't use comment after savoir. The correct form is "Je sais + infinitive"

8/30/2014, 4:14:13 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/Wandini

Doesn't "il a su" also mean he knew how...without the need for "comment"?

3/22/2013, 7:55:01 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/ferynn
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"Il a su" = He has known "comment" = how But sometimes it is expandable : Il a su (comment) démarrer le moteur = He's known how to start the engine.

3/22/2013, 10:13:02 PM

https://www.duolingo.com/jmulqueen
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that doesn't really clear it up. savoir doesn't usually take 'comment' whereas in english it is necessary to use the word 'how'. It's unclear why in this case comment is included.

4/25/2013, 1:59:23 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/ferynn
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We do both agree that "comment" in this case is not really required then. I think it's pretty much up to you if you want to include it or not. Both sentences (in french) would have the same meaning. What's possible is, if you have trouble with a specific sentence, put it there and we'll try to see if one is not correct.

4/25/2013, 7:13:24 AM

https://www.duolingo.com/studyy
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Sitesurf where are you ?

9/6/2014, 7:39:34 PM
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