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  5. "He is probably going to come…

"He is probably going to come."

Translation:Il va sûrement venir.

March 23, 2013



When you say probably, you're not that sure as in sûrement, or are you? :s


if I say "probably" I mean that there are 60% chances that he comes...


Which is definitely different from "surely" or "certainly" ("sûrement"), which is 100%. I'm going to report it, "probablement" should be good, but "sûrement" not.


Despite the fact that "sûrement" comes from "sûr" which is the French for "sure" or "certain", it can mean "surely" and "probably". In fact, in most cases it will mean "probablement". For instance here if you say to a Frenchman "Il va sûrement venir" he will understand that it is not a 100% sure that he will come. It's weird but it's like that and I have no idea why it became like this. If you are sure that he will come then simply say "Il va venir".


Well, "sûrement" may be correct but why does this disqualify "probablement"? From what I know "probablement" means "probably" so BOTH answers should be accepted, right?

  • 2796

What's wrong with "il va venir probablement" ?



In my opinion, "probably" translated in "probablement" is not wrong. It means that it is almost certain that he will come.


"il va probablement venir" sounds more correct to me


I wrote "Il probablement va venir." So, is it a rule that the adverb goes in front of a infinitive? Merci.


yes, it is a rule, you cannot place an adverb in front of a verb in its simple form.

  • il viendra probablement

but, you can place it differently if the verb is conjugated in a compound tense or used with a modal verb, like:

  • il va probablement venir
  • il peut probablement venir
  • il est probablement venu
  • il était probablement venu


So where does "viendra" come from, it is not in the vocabulary list. I tried putting "il vient probablement". Guess that was wrong. Maybe we should request for that word to be added to Duolingo.


"viendra" is the simple future of "vient":

je viendrai, tu viendras, il/elle/on viendra, nous viendrons, vous viendrez, ils/elles viendront.


Oh, okay, guess I haven't reached that lesson yet, that's why its probably not in my vocabulary list.


I wrote, "Il est sans doute qu'il aille venir." Help me understand my mistakes.


He is going to + verb = il va + infinitive verb: this is near future, constructed in both languages with verb "go/aller".

Two differences with English,

  • use of English continuous present tense (be + Verb-ing) vs French simple present tense (continuous tenses do not exist in French).

  • French verb aller is constructed (like a modal verb) without a preposition: aller + infinitive, vs go to + verb.

When it comes to the adverb "sans doute/sûrement/certainement", its placement is preferable after the verb it modifies: il va sans doute venir.

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