"The mosque is located in the city centre."
Translation:La mosquée se trouve au centre de la ville.
Grammatically speaking, this is correct, but I think that there are more natural ways to say it. The passive tense is not used that often in French, whereas this is really common in English. In translation classes in university, professors told me that the passive tense could be translated in French in three different ways. I ranked them from the most to the least natural-sounding translation:
Use a pronominal verb instead of the passive tense: "The mosque is located in the city centre." -> "La mosquée se situe dans le centre de la ville."
Conjugate the verb with the personal pronoun "on": "The mosque is located in the city centre." -> "On situe la mosquée dans le centre de la ville."
Keep the passive tense: "The mosque is located in the city centre." -> "La mosquée est située dans le centre de la ville."
Depending on how it sounds in French, you will have to choose between these three translations. Here, I think that the first one, "La mosquée se situe dans le centre de la ville.", is the one which sounds the most natural in French. The two other ones do not sound natural at all. In most cases, this is the use of a pronominal verb which sounds the most natural, but this not always the case.
I hope that my explanation helped you. If you do not understand what I said, feel free to ask me to rephrase it :)
I translated the sentence by "La mosquée se trouve en centre-ville.", but it was not accepted. I do not understand why for three reasons:
According to the Online Collins Dictionary, "The city centre is the busiest part of a city, where most of the shops and businesses are." (https://www.collinsdictionary.com/dictionary/english/city-centre). It does not say that it is in the centre of the city geographically speaking, so I do not think that it is accurate to translate "city centre" by "centre de la ville".
"City centre" means "centre-ville" in French, and "un centre-ville" in France is not necessarly in the centre of a city, like a city centre in Engish speaking cities. Since there is an equivalent of that expression in French, why is it not used?
"La mosquée se trouve en centre-ville." sounds natural in French: I asked French people if they think that it sounds French, and they all agreed with me.
Can someone give me their opinion on the matter (whether you agree or disagree)?
I hope that I do not sound agressive in this comment: I just want to explain my point of view to improve this exercise. If you do not understand what I say, feel free to ask me to rephrase it. Thanks in advance to those who will reply to my comment :)
I did the same as you did, and it's marked wrong. I'm flagging it as "should be accepted," and we'll see if it changes.
What is the difference between centre de la ville, which is accepted, and centre-ville, which is not accepted?
Presumably there are unique connotations that I am overlooking.
"Le centre de la ville" can be translated as "the centre of the city" in English. It refers to the district of the city that is, geographically, in its centre, as opposed to the borders of the city.
"Le centre-ville" can be translated as either "the city center" or "the downtown" in English. It refers to the district of the city where all businesses and shops are, which can be on the borders of the city geographically speaking.
To sum it up, "le centre de la ville" refers to the geographical centre of the city, and "le centre-ville" refers to the economical and commercial centre of the city.
For that reason, I disagree with the translation of the sentence "The mosque is located in the city centre." In my opinion, it ought to be translated as "La mosquée se trouve dans le centre-ville." instead of "La mosquée se trouve au centre de la ville." because "the city centre" means "le centre-ville" in French.
I hope that my comment helped you, and that I have not confused you even more! If you still do not understand the difference, I recommend you to read the definitions of "the centre of a city" and "the city centre / the downtown" to get the difference between these two phrases in English in the first place :)
"La mosquée se trouve au centre-ville" is perfectly correct French, isn't it?
I used 'du cité' and was marked wrong. At school we were taught that a city is a town with a cathedral, in both French and English. Does this distinction no longer apply?
No, it's different in French. A cite is a walled, probably hilltop, enclosure, like Carcassonne, or the island in Paris where Notre Dame cathedral is situated. And it's feminine.