1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: French
  4. >
  5. "Je devais aller voir un méde…

"Je devais aller voir un médecin hier."

Translation:I had to go see a doctor yesterday.

April 28, 2018


[deactivated user]

    "go see ..." is American English; British (and New Zealand) English would require "go to see ..."


    I'm American--and would say go to see--most people I know would. But I'm older: "go see" feels off.


    Go and see or go to see is the correct way of saying it in all English speaking countries...except, it would seem in the USA!


    Several English variants are possible: 1) go to see, 2) go see, 3) go and see, 4) see, 5) go to. There is nothing to be gained by pushing BrE vs. AmE. Since Duolingo is an American company, don't expect BrE to be preferred if there are differences. Every effort is made to accept all reasonable translations.


    Yes but those options should be accepted. I was searching in vain to find the options of "and" or "to".


    For the word tiles there will always be a correct form to use, but it might not be the one you are used to.


    This is only true if you are familiar with the strange US way of saying things. Tiles for the more normal British/Australian/European speech should be included after so many adverse comments.


    Sorry! This course is from American English. You should be able to use a British form in the translation to English though.


    Yes, this seems to be quite common in DuoLingo now. "go see" would be wrong to most English speakers in the world, the vast majority of whom are outside the US.


    The vast majority of English speakers speak American English: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/English-speaking_world

    Did you report it as another alternative?


    That statement is untrue.


    Why is this in the imperfect tense please? I must have missed or forgotten something along the way. It sounds like a one off occurrence that has been completed, so should't it be in the perfect tense? Also how to I get back to tips and hints to check things out again please ?



    https://www.duolingo.com/skill/fr/Verbs%3A-Past-Imperfect/tips-and-notes This link doesn't work, but just click on the Past Imperfect skill and click on the lightbulb when you are on the web version of Duolingo.

    In addition 2 months later:

    Even though you have the imperfect in French, the English translation is the same as for the “J’ai dû aller voir...” and this is a difference in English because you cannot say “I was having to go see...”. “Have” is a stative verb which is not used in this way.

    It is not “going” that is in imperfect but “having to go”, so this verb takes on a different meaning. The imperfect version of “I had to go see...” means “I was supposed to go see...” while the passé composé version of “I had to go see...” means “I must have gone to see...”



    Thank you for a very helpful explanation.


    2019-02-11 So you're saying that this sentence means someone made an appointment for me that I was compelled to keep, not that I suffered an acute condition that required medical treatment? I would be more likely to use it in the 2nd case, which would not be imperfect.


    You can have to go see a doctor for different reasons. I did not say that. The imperfect implies that it is not a sudden reason, but one that I knew about. Who says someone else made the appointment? I could have made the appointment myself. Perhaps I need to go for a follow-up appointment, or to a specialist, or just my annual doctor’s appointment, but it was something that I knew that I was going to have to do during the past and then I did, but the imperfect expresses that there was a time during which I knew I was supposed to do this. The passé composé would be used for something sudden or that happened and was done. The passé composé also covers our present perfect tense.

    • 1632

    Curious: "devais aller voir" is a string of 3 verbs continuously together without using any "a" or "de". Is there any limit on number of verbs with such expressions?


    I would be surprised to see more than 4 verbs. There is not a rule limiting the number of verbs.

    Passé composé: “J’ai dû aller voir...”


    I had to go and see a doctor yesterday should be correct also.


    Did you report it as correct for British English?


    I do not know whether the combined populations of all non US English speaking countries exceed the US population (some of whom are not native English speakers. However the point is that a considerable number (if not the majority) of the world's native English speakers would use "go to see" and as such this should be accepted by Duolingo. Why is Duolingo trying to undermine their excellent work by this obstinacy?


    It is accepted as correct. What was your entire sentence?


    I think this is an American way of saying something, Brits would say I had to go and see a doctor yesterday.....feels completely wrong.


    It's "i had to go and see...". You should be accessible to all forms of English


    This is really poor English again. We would say 'go to see' and not 'go see'. I think that is an American expression.

    • 1632

    No. I think it is a Frenchenglish expression.


    American English does use “go see” and this is a course from American English which is not poor English. It is just not British English. Your version can be reported as also correct if it is not accepted as correct.


    In england we dont say go see but say go and see


    Did you report it as also correct for British English?

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