1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: French
  4. >
  5. "The women have dresses."

"The women have dresses."

Translation:Les femmes ont des robes.

April 23, 2018

33 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/LisaLisko

Im still confused about ont and sont. Whats the difference?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Senior.Cit

'ont' is from the verb 'to have' and 'sont' is from the verb 'to be'


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Senior.Cit

When does 'les' change to 'des'


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

The choice between "les" and "des" is meaning driven/

The women = Les femmes, specific women

Dresses = "des robes", the plural of "une robe", with "des" as the plural indefinite article that English does not have. It is required when the meaning is "more than one".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Senior.Cit

Thank you. So if it is: The women have the red dresses, that would be - Les femmes ont LES robes rouge (?)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

Yes, plus an -s at the end of "rouges".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/nourainghadi

I'm confused. 'Les femmes', means that there are more than 1 . So how come it isn't used for dresses? Why isn't it 'les robes'?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

To know which articles to use in French, put the sentence in the singular:

The women ---> the woman: specific "La femme"
have ---> has "a"
dresses ---> a dress: indefinite "une robe".

Now, go back to the original sentence in plural and remember that the plural of "la" is "les" and the plural of "une" is "des".

The women have dresses = Les femmes ont des robes.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/nourainghadi

Great help! Thank you!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/YuriMykolayevych

It is "les femmes" when you are either talking about all women in general or about all the women in some implied or overt group or situation. Now if those women that you are talking about have all the dresses that exist (again dresses in general or in some grouping of dresses) then you could say les robes. But when the women that you are talking about are not the only ones who have dresses you say "des robes". To summarize: "les x x x" is all inclusive. "des x x x x" = "more than one and less than all" implied or overt".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Andrew761109

My answer was exactly the same as the official answer but it was marked as wrong. Second time this has happened to me today.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/aleena802094

Why is possedent used here instead of avons?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ripcurlgirl

avons is the nous conjugate of avoir. "Les femmes" = elles = ont.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CharlotteK828313

Would there be a liaison here? Les femme (z)ont des robes? Or would that sound too similar to Les femmes sont des robes? (even though that doesn't make sense)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

No, a liaison is not welcome here, because "femmes" is a noun.

Yet, the liaison would required after a plural personal pronoun.

But the sound you can hear when you liaise "elles_ont" is Z, not S as in "elles sont".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AlondraMtz4

Since when did that change to "ont des" wasnt it "a has"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/BrianEdwar10

I chose "a" to fill in for "ont" and it said I was wrong. Why?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

"A" is the conjugation for the 3rd person singular (has) but "the women" is plural = les femmes ont.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Daniela611553

Why is it "ont" and not "a des??" I'm so confused ugh


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

The women = plural of "the woman" = les femmes

The women have = les femmes ont

The woman = la femme

The woman has = la femme a


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Shreyas327492

can we use avons instead of ont des ?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

"Avons" is the conjugation for "nous". For ils/elles (3rd person plural), you need "ont".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JSavageIII

What does "des" mean? Why can't I just say "Les femmes ont robes"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

"Des robes" is the plural of "une robe".

English does not have a plural form for "a/an", but French has a plural indefinite article and it is required with the meaning of "more than one".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Immylovie

wouldn't 'des' mean some dresses not just dresses?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

"Des" is the plural of "une". In English, the usual plural of "a dress" is "dresses". You don't need "some". The meaning may be "some dresses", but meaning and translation may be different.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/YuriMykolayevych

Literally you are correct as in English "some" or "some of" is understood. Literally it means "The women have (some of all the) dresses (that are in existence).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/aimeemarieleroi

I find myself often forgetting to include des in situations like this. Suggestions on how to remember to include it?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

Just remember that bare nouns are rare in French, so maybe think twice before using one.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ChaoticMaster

When do I know when to use "des" in a sentence?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

Whenever the singular noun would have "un" or "une", because "des" is the plural of "un/une".

In the English sentence, "dresses" is the plural of "a dress", so in French the plural of "une robe" is "des robes".

Learn French in just 5 minutes a day. For free.