plural in french
I understand that when you want to say for example: "some cats" you would say "du/des chats where du is used masculine and des is feminine. but how would you say "The ducks" for example? would you just say les? for example "I have the ducks" would become: " j'ai les canards?
but des is a contraction of de and les. but des is still only indefinite?
Yes, this article might help: https://www.thoughtco.com/du-de-la-des-1368977
In any language, there are usages you just have to memorize, because no rule explains them all.
Whenever I get frustrated because French grammar seems incomprehensible, I think about the people I know who are struggling with English grammar rules.
thanks, for the help. My mother language is danish which has a lot of similarities with english grammar wise, but french just seems so overcomplicated at times
Le, la, l' and les are definite articles, used for specific or general things.
- J'ai le canard = I have the duck
- Les canards peuvent voler = Ducks (in general) can fly
Du, de la and de l' are partitive articles used with uncountable nouns with the meaning of "an unknown amount of a mass thing".
- Je bois du vin, de la bière, de l'eau = I drink (some) wine, (some) beer, (some) water
Un, une, and their plural des are indefinite articles, used with countable nouns.
- J'ai un canard = I have a duck
- J'ai des canards = I have (more than one) ducks
Thanks for the reply, but using your example: Les canards peuvent voler = ducks can fly. How can you distinguish this from The ducks can fly (as in a definite countable number) other than through context?