"Nous donnions à différentes associations."

Translation:We used to donate to various charities.

April 17, 2018



Why not, "We were giving to different charities."

April 24, 2018


You are absolutely correct in my view. Describes an on-going action in the past.

May 6, 2018


I selected the tiles 'we donate to different charities' (i.e not including the left over tiles 'used' and 'to' as in the answer above)

My answer was flagged as having a typo (? on a tile question) and accepted... should it have been?

April 17, 2018


It is not a typo but a conjugation error.

"Nous donnions" is past imperfect so "we donate" in present cannot work.

"Nous donnions" in imperfect can mean:

  • We were giving, to describe an on-going action in the past
  • We used to give, to describe a past habit/repeated event.
April 17, 2018


Out of curiosity, how does one write the idea "We donate to different charities", in the sense that I donate to Oxfam and she donates to the Red Cross?


May 1, 2018


Nous donnions (elle et moi) à des associations différentes.

May 8, 2018


Why does differente sometimes precede, sometimes not precede, the noun(s)?

October 21, 2018


Good question. In French class, we learned that only certain adjectives precede the noun, and different is not one of them, therefore it should follow the noun.

February 23, 2019


Read the comments.

February 25, 2019



May 8, 2018


Why not, literally, 'we used to give to different groups'?

May 22, 2018


Why various? Why not different? Is it because it is placed before associations, thus becoming less descriptive and more figurative?

June 9, 2018


Why not charities?

September 3, 2018


I heard the man's voice of "donnions a" as "don-ni-yon-WA". I thought it should be "do-ni-yon-Za" or "don-ni-yon- A".

The female voice reads "do-ni-ion-A", same I thought.

Question on how to pronounce the "ions" with following "a". Any help please?

September 13, 2018


Until now, "associations" has been "organizations" in the sentences. Why is "We used to give to different organizations." now incorrect? Please clarify to ease my confusion.

December 20, 2018


It should work, report it.

December 21, 2018


I did. Thanks, though.

December 21, 2018


Can anyone explain why "différentes" comes before the noun here? Thanks.

January 15, 2019


Before the noun, "différentes" means "several", "multiple" or "various". After the noun, it means specifically "different" as in "not the same".

So, "Nous donnions à différentes associations." would mean "we give to several charities."

And "Nous donnions aux associations différentes." Would be used in a case like: "My husband and I are both philanthropists, but we give to different charities."

Although, as with any language, there are exceptions and people don't always use the word placement this way. It all depends on context.

January 15, 2019


This has ALWAYS confused me.

January 15, 2019


Didn't "associations" also used to mean "organizations"?

February 1, 2019


Association has several meanings, depending on the context. Here the context is that donations are received, so "charities" is a good bet. Do you agree?

February 14, 2019


"Charities" usually are "des associations" but not all "les associations" are charities. Think of the NRA in the US or "l'Association des Amateurs de l'Authentique Andouille Auvergnate" in France, which is a club of lovers of the authentic "andouille" (small sausage made of chitterlings) from Auvergne.

February 15, 2019


But you could also donate to those associations/organizations without them being charities. So shouldn't they also be acceptable translations?

February 19, 2019


Yes, you could, no problem. I just wished to explain what "une association" is in France. The accepted translations for associations are: associations/non-profits/charities/organizations.

February 21, 2019


Boy does this "correct" English transliteration seem awkward to me. Is "Associations" always translated as "Charities"?

February 21, 2019


Please read the rest of the thread.

February 21, 2019


This is confusing, if this is the meaning, how do we then say "we donated"?

March 28, 2019


"We donated" could translate to "Nous donnions" depending on context.

The imparfait tense is used to describe ongoing activities and states in the past. So, for example:

"When I was young, we donated a lot of money to help the poor"

would translate with the imparfait because the action of giving was ongoing:

-->"Quand j'etais jeune, nous donnions beaucoup d'argent aux pauvres."

But, if the act of giving was a single time action, it would be Passé Composé:

"I gave you 5 euros last week!"--> "Je vous ai donné 5 euros la semaine derniere!"

Although, "faire donner" or "faire un don" is a closer translation of "to donate". "Donner" by itself can safely be translated to "to give" in most situations. It's just like in English: "We donate our time" and "We give our time" are synonymous.

March 28, 2019
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