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https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

Vingt Questions

Quelqu'un veut jouer à vingt questions? Il y a un fil sur DL "le français à partir d'anglais" ou on à joué à ce jeu. Peut-être que ça peut être également intéressant pour les gens qui apprennent l'anglais à partir de français.

The rules:

I have thought of a word, and you can ask questions to try and figure out the word.

Your question must be asked in such a way that I can answer with a yes or a no.

You must also ask your question in english.

It is better to wait to see the answer to a question before asking another one because your question might be irrelevent once a previous one has been answered.

You have twenty questions in total.

I will watch out for your replies but because I live in Australia, the time difference between us is likely to be huge, so don't worry if I don't answer straight away :)

The prize? Three lingots to the one who guesses correctly and hopefully some tips for everyone to help you with your english studies. I will also give a lingot to the person who asks the first question. I will correct any english errors and I would be grateful if you would correct my french ones.

Let the game begin.

il y a 4 ans

86 commentaires


https://www.duolingo.com/S.Belka

Correction: Quelqu'un veut jouer à vingt questions? Il y a un fil * sur DL "le français à partir d'anglais" où * on a * joué à * ce jeu. Peut-être que ça peut être également intéressant * pour les gens qui apprennent l'anglais à partir de français.

Ok so I'm going to try to begin: It's an animal or an object or a human ?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

Congrats - you asked the first question so I will give you a lingot, BUT I should have explained the rules properly (where I live, people know this game so I didn't think to do this) : ( - Your question must be phrased so that I can answer with only a yes or a no So I won't be able to answer your question, so sorry. Keep an eye on the thread and ask another one!

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

Thanks for correcting my french - I am very grateful and will edit the original post.

OK so I'm going to try to begin - Although this is grammatically correct, (peut-être ça devient de : Je vais essayer de commencer), it doesn't sound quite right in English, mais c'est difficile de savoir exactement pourquoi. Je vais y réfléchir et vous l'expliquerai plus tard!

It's an animal...? should be Is it an animal...? In English, as in French, you can construct a question without inverting the statement, but it is much rarer than in French. We only do it to confirm a supposition or to express astonishment.

En anglais, comme en français, on peut construire une question sans inversion, mais c'est BEAUCOUP plus rare qu'en français. On ne le fait que pour confirmer une supposition ou bien pour exprimer l’étonnement. C'est très bien explique sur ce site français http://www.anglaisfacile.com/exercices/exercice-anglais-2/exercice-anglais-4713.php

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/S.Belka

mais c'est difficile* Ok thanks for your correction also ! So another question: Is it an object ?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

Funny - un mot anglais en plain milieu de ma phrase française!!

Yes - I think it could be described as an object.

18 to go.

Why not ask the next question in a "new" comment box, then it will be after both questions and be easier to follow

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/S.Belka

hahaha yes also French people use some Englih words in their sentences sometimes ! Hum, is it an object useful in everyday life ?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

Yes it is.

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/S.Belka

Fine ! Is it an technological object ? (I don't know if I can say that but I mean the opposite of an atisanal object)

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

No it is not. "Technological object" seems to be fine in English, although we would probably say "technological device". By "seems to be fine - I mean I have googled it and the term does exist :)

I would probably choose to say Does the object have anything to do with technology

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/S.Belka

Ah ok Thanks so it's not a technological object, is it in the bedroom ?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

Yes it can be found in the bedroom. 15 questions left - quite a few aren't there?? Questions I mean : )

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/S.Belka

Is it useful ? (not just for the decoration or other) :)

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

Yes - it is very useful - but necessarily for other if you mean what I think you mean :)

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/S.Belka

A bed ?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

Oops - Sorry I left out the NOT !! ie NOT necessarily for"other" !!! So bed is not correct and I will not count that question!!! So there are still 14 left!

necessARILY in my original sentence (ie without "not" is not correct english.

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/S.Belka

Wow I think I don't understand haha You mean the object can bu useful for other ? Je vais continuer en français pour mieux comprendre désolé haha Je disais est-ce un objet utile, et dans ce sens un objet qui n'est pas juste utilisé pour la décoration ou pour un loisir ou autre, peut être que j'aurais du demander est-ce qu'on peut se passer de l'objet ?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

Haha- Vous avez vous un film Lost in Translation? C'est nous!!

Quand vous avez écrit non seulement pour décoration or other et vous avez mis un "smiley", je croyait que vous parliez de ce qu'on peut faire sur le lit (et je ne parle pas de dormir!!) Alors j'ai dit Yes - useful, but NOT necessarily for other - c'est a dire ce n'est pas exactement ce qu'on choisira pour "other" mais c'est utile quand meme : )

Vous avez répondu un lit et j'ai su immédiatement qu'on a perdu qch en traduction - lost in translation!!) So funny.

On dit Used for decoration, pas used for THE decoration And we say useful for other things, or useful for something other than decoration not just useful for other

SO We know

It is not a famous person

It is useful

It has nothing to do with technology

It is useful for things other than you would use a bed for ;)

It is not just for decoration!! (

C'est utile, mais on peut s'en passer (ça ne veut pas dire qu'on sera content si on ne l'avait pas, but it is possible to live without it.

L'objet pèse plus qu'un kilo

It is not a wardrobe

It is not necessarily made of wood, but it can be.

(Konrad-Michal joined us below so I have added his answers :)

You and Konrad have 11 questions left : )

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/S.Belka

Ah I understand better haha ! So is it a desk ?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

No it isn't a desk - I think you really need some more information about the object - there are only 9 questions left!!

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/S.Belka

Is it smaller than 50cm ?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

I suppose it could be, but usually it is much bigger.

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/SourireCache

Yay, I'll play too! It's nice to be able to actually participate this time. c:

Voilà ma question: Qu'est-ce que c'est la couleur ou les couleurs du mot?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

Sorry Jaelle - see my reply to Wisdoms - I need to be able to answer yes or no. Also try to ask in english - we are practising english here :) Try again :) PS the english you wrote was perfect!

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/SourireCache

Heehee, merci! I also speak English, but misunderstood the game. My bad! xD

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

So funny - I am definitely getting the feeling I posted in the wrong spot!! I wrote at the top that it was for people learning english from french, but......

Hey - why not follow the thread anyway because they are correcting my french as well, so you might learn something, and maybe you could chime in on some of my english corrections. eg I can't put my finger on why I'm going to try to begin sounds incorrect and so am at a loss to explain it. Something to do with try and begin I think, or maybe I'm going to instead of I will. The double infinitive should be fine - we use them all the time. I just wouldn't say it like that, that's all...

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Ronnie-JA

Well, the only thing that may be "wrong" with this example is its meaning in using the double infinitive. If one is going to try to begin, the emphasis is on trying whereas the intention may be to emphasise beginning something. So if the intention is to begin, you can simply go straight to "I am/will try to begin...[something]", avoiding the need for the superfluous infinitive here.

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Ronnie-JA

Est-ce que c'est une personne fameuse?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

That is exactly the right way to phrase the question but I need it in english : ) I started this thread for french people who want to practise english. Hope I'm in the right spot !! Here is a lingot for asking the first question, and I will answer it so we can keep the ball rolling ; )

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Ronnie-JA

Lol, I think I am in the wrong place as I'm learning French! Pardon mon ami, je partirai le jue.

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

Ha ha - maybe I'm in the wrong spot - I do both trees - but actually find the "french to english " one more difficult - I make ridiculous errors all the time!! The questions are different so you learn different expressions though, which is great.

Hope you don't mind, but I just wanted to point out that for people, the french use célèbre rather than fameux/fameuse Fameux/fameuse doesn't translate directly to famous (in the way we understand and use the english word) - it is a slightly tricky french word to use and when used with a person, often has a negative implication, a bit like infamous. A Google search reveals lots of info on this and is fun to read. Just Google "Celebre or Fameux" This link below is a good place to start, but is in french - there is lots available in english too. Bon apprentissage !! http://unpetitcoindefrance.blogspot.com.au/2013/08/vocabulaire-difference-entre-fameux-et.html

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Ronnie-JA

Ah yes, of course I know célèbre quite well, just couldn't think of it at the time of my question. I simple went for the "what sounds the easiest" option, but this is a good distinction to know.

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

No it is not a famous person. Nineteen questions left.

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Konrad-Michal
Konrad-Michal
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Hi everyone! Let me join the game. Is the weight of this object lower than 1 kg?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

Welcome - No it is not! 13 questions left.

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Konrad-Michal
Konrad-Michal
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Cheers! 1. Is this a wardrobe? 2. If not, is this made of wood?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

No, it's not a wardrobe.

It is not necessarily made of wood but it can be : )

So we know -

It is not a famous person

It is useful

It has nothing to do with technology

It is useful for things other than you would us a bed for ;)

It is not just for decoration!! (

C'est utile, mais on peut s'en passer (ça ne veut pas dire qu'on sera content si on ne l'avait pas, but it is possible to live without it.

L'objet pèse plus qu'un kilo

It is not a wardrobe

It is not necessarily made of wood, but it can be.

You and Wisdoms have 11 questions left : )

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Konrad-Michal
Konrad-Michal
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Can you find it also in an office?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

Yes!! Finally the two of you have left the bedroom : )

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Konrad-Michal
Konrad-Michal
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:) Do more than 80 percent of Australians possess it in their houses?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

Yes they do . You are playing the game well - asking questions to narrow down the possibilities rather than random guesses. Well done :)

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Konrad-Michal
Konrad-Michal
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Thanks :) Is this a piece of furniture?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

No - it is not a piece of furniture : )

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Konrad-Michal
Konrad-Michal
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Can it then be made of glass?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

Yes - it is rare for it to be made of glass, but it is possible.

(Then is not necessary in your sentence - are you using it as the french "alors" ? In this position in current-day spoken english, then means after or following Once you have washed the jumper, it can then be dried either flat in the shade or on a cool setting in the dryer.

I think there are about 7 questions remaining : 0

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

So, would probably be better for this conversation if you really want to use a conjunction here, just remember that it goes at the beginning of the clause (unlike then which can appear anwhere depending on it's meaning) So can it be made of glass?

You can use Then if you really want to, but it should be at the beginning of your sentence for it have this meaning, AND, it would be more appropriate to use it if your preceeding questions were phrased in the same way. Otherwise you don't really need then - it sounds a bit odd because it is unecessary. I guess in spoken english, where you might be using it as a filler *Then....ummmmm... Is it...Um... * it would be OK : )

It is it made of wood?/Is it something you can eat? No

Is it made of steel?/Is it something you can drive? No

Is it made of paper?/Is it something you can sit on? No

Then is it made of glass?/Then is it something you can carry?

This is not a hard and fast rule, but it just sounds better... using then is a bit tricky : )

NOW Is this object in the position of hanging? Sorry this is not correct english - I will help you rephrase it. Are you wondering whether the object is hanging up? (Like a chandelier) Or whether you CAN hang it up if you want to? (Like a painting) Or whether you can hang things off it? (Like a clothesline)

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Konrad-Michal
Konrad-Michal
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Thanks for that. Yes, I've used it as French "alors". Should I use "so" instead of "then"? And my next question is: Is this object in the position of hanging?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Konrad-Michal
Konrad-Michal
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Thank you so much! I meant: "Can you hang it up (like a painting or a lamp)?", that is "Can it be hanging?"

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

You're welcome. Can you/I hang it up is the best way to ask this. Can it be hanging is not correct. I have been trying to figure out why. I don't know enough about the grammatical terms to explain it, but I do know we wouldn't say it. Can the boat float NOT Can the boat be floating

I have actually seen a car, and also a piano, and glass jars etc hanging up, so I think actually modern man canhang up whatever they like : ) But in the life of an ordinary household, this would not be found hanging up. And I don't think one could hang one of these anyway mmmm.....

So in answer to your question - no, you cannot hang it up.

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Konrad-Michal
Konrad-Michal
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Thank you! Seems difficult, your riddle... Do you mean that this object is standing rather than lying?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

A bit tricky, yes, because it is not what immediately springs to mind when one hears the word "object" but it is in fact an object : )

Yes - this object is always standing when functional.

I have lost track of the number of questions but we can just keep going if you want as hopefully you are learning a bit of english along the way! If you are bored, it's OK to pull out, but I am enjoying myself so happy to continue.

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Konrad-Michal
Konrad-Michal
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No, I am not bored at all, opposite: I am intrigued :) Question No. 16: Is it surprising to find it outdoors? I still believe I can manage to guess what it is before using out all the 20 questions. And what is "so happy" in your sentence "I am enjoying myself so happy to continue." connected to: "enjoying" or "continue"?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

Yes you can difinitely find this object outside

I left I am out of the happy clause - obviously creating some ambiguity. Perhaps it would have been better with a comma I am enjoying myself, so (I am) happy to continue, but a comma is not usually necessary before a conjunction.

I have used so as a conjunction (in the sense of "therefore") but it can also be used to modify happy as in I am so happy to see you or as you said, used at the end to modify the verb He is enjoying himself so. Obviously mt=y sentence is not as clearmy sentence is probably not as clear as it should be.

In English, as you are aware, we often leave words out of phrases to simplify a sentence, but words should not be left out if the sentence ends up being anbiguous!!

These are called "elliptical" phrases, and are usually adverbial so I don't know if mine properly qualifies :).

I am enjoying myself so I am happy to continue

I am enjoying myself so am happy to continue (am included and I omitted but implied)

I am enjoying myself so happy to continue (I am omitted)

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Konrad-Michal
Konrad-Michal
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OK, it is clear for me now, many thanks. And do you move this object from one place to another more frequently than thrice a year?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

Just the other day, I said the word thrice for the first time in about two decades!!! Funny you should use it today.

It is a very old-fashioned word, but I love it. We tend to use it very rarely, more's the pity.

We say once or twice, but usually say three times, unless in very formal situations or literature. It is perceived by many as being a bit pretentious (not by me - as I said, I love it)

In answer to your question, no, this object is not moved frequently, if at all.

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Konrad-Michal
Konrad-Michal
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Hi! I like your explanations :) Would it be dangerous for you if one destroyed all of them in your household?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

That depends - it could be dangerous for you, but not necessarily :)

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Konrad-Michal
Konrad-Michal
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OK, is this made of concrete?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

I think you may be getting warmer :) It can be made of concrete but not necessarily

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Konrad-Michal
Konrad-Michal
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If this is a wall, can't you die if you destroy all of them?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

Well, you CAN die, but not if you aren't in the house at the time :)

The thing is that in English, your original sentence if one destroyed all the walls in your house, can mean that someone else did it, so if you weren't in the house at the time, you'd be safe.

Even if you had said If YOU destroyed all the walls in your house, this doesn't necessarily mean that you personally did it. You might have hired some contracters to destroy your walls while you were at work. They may, or may not be dead, but it would not have been dangerous for you :)

In this instance, I could still say to the guys at work I'm demolishing the house today, although we would also say The house is being demolished today

I might say to a friend I see you've destroyed/demolished your old shed. That can mean either that she did it herself, or that she employed someone to do it, or that she just asked a group of friends over and made them a cup of tea while they did it.

It is very common to say

We're building a new house. He's renovating the old mansion on the hill. They are redesigning the garden

None of these sentences necessarily mean the individuals are doing it themselves. By implication, they can be "arranging" for it to be done. It can mean they are doing it themselves, depending on the person and the situation. For example if the person we are talking about is a builder, we would assume it is being done by that individual.

BACK TO THE GAME : Let's go back and assume you did PERSONALLY destroy the walls in your house. It still does not mean that it is dangerous for you :

You might be sitting safely in the cabin of the wrecker while you are smashing the walls!!

Or you might destroy them a bit more slowly with a large sledgehammer and jump out of the way after each blow. You'd have to be fairly agile to escape unscathed (also pretty lucky), but it is possible...

Great job guessing "wall" though. Well done - here are your lingots :) Hopefully the game helped a bit with your (excellent) English.

PS - I will just mention something about the use of the word household.

Household usually refers to the people living in the house. It can also mean the house, the things in it and also the occupants. But we wouldn't talk about destroying the walls in the household. In your original sentence, it is OK (I think), because you might have been talking about the spoons or the televisions or anything else, although I still prefer house here. But the moment you are thinking about walls or rooms or similar, you need to say house

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Konrad-Michal
Konrad-Michal
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Thank you! It was a great (and useful for my English at the same time) fun. I would however argue that even if you are agile enough to escape unscathed from smashing walls, it still means that there was some danger...

If you wanna take revenge, I can invent my word for you.

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

great fun not a great fun (might have been a typo)

You are quite right - it would still mean there was an element of danger during the destruction. I stand corrected.

There is something about the way the question was phrased that somehow seems to put us in the "post-destruction" phase though. I am unable to put my finger on exactly what it is, but I will have a little think about.

It is the difference between dangerous if the walls are destroyed, rather than any danger during the destruction.

I think maybe it is the would followed by if

Would it be dangerous for you if one destroyed all of them in your household?

I am very curious about this and if I can't think it through to a satisfactory end point, I will ask the linguistics teacher at my children's school and see of she can shed any light on it :)

I won't bore you with the intricacies of the explanation unless you are interested....

PS best to choose you or one for a sentence and not mix them up. I would phrase the question like this.

So Would it be dangerous to destroy all of these in your house is how I would word this question, or Would it be dangerous if all the ones in your house were destroyed?.

These two questions have a slightly different meaning and I think it is tied to what I was talking about before. sadly neither of them are great English, but I have thought too long about this question and no longer know what I would say !!!! i will come back to it tomorrow :)

Sorry I get off-track so easily and if all the details are boring you to tears....I am a kind of tangential (but definitely not lateral) thinker!

Re another game - I am not a vengeful person, so I won't play for revenge , but I would love another game. So....

  1. Is it an object?
il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

PS you wouldn't say invent a word, that means you will make up a new word that doesn't exist - you would definitely win in that case!!

If you want to take revenge, I will think of a word for you (It would be unusual to say my word in this sentence :)

I wish I could take back my words is one expression where you can use it.

Just found this site - quick and fun, but challenging even for a native speaker; really makes you think and sift through your vocab

http://www.people.fas.harvard.edu/~pahk/dictionary/guess.cgi

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Konrad-Michal
Konrad-Michal
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It seems interesting for me how you - as a native speaker - analyze the rules of grammar of your language, so it's not boring :) Maybe should I say "return match" instead of "revenge"? Is it okay to say "I can think out a word for you"? I tried your site. I needed 19 guesses, but at the end I had to help myself with a dictionary.

The answer for your question is: No, it is not an object.

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

We say re-match here in Auistralia :) No can't say I can think out a word for you it has to be of - we think of something. But we would probably say I will think of a word for you or I could rather than can - it is just not quite right here.

I like to research and figure it out because sometimes I know we wouldn't say it, but I don't know why :) If I just say "We don't say that, we say this" - it is not really very helpful because you can't use that information to construct another sentence another day. Besides it's fun :) I have learnt a lot and understand a lot more about why we say things the way we do. Similar patterns can be found in other languages too so it then makes it easier to learn them.

Q2 Is it an animal?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

Q 2.5 - Joke question! Is the word "caucus?" haha

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Konrad-Michal
Konrad-Michal
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Yes, caucus :) But never heard of this word. When it comes to the patterns, I used to be wondering why there are really lots of similarities in different languages (e.g. idioms). Have you thought of it?

I know that you use "think of", but it means "think about". Don't you have a preposition for the sense of finding a word in your mind?

A2 It is not an animal, either.

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

Patterns - a prime example of what I mean is how in French you can say trés belle or vraiment belle, but you can't say trés genial, you have to say vraiment genial. I could not understand why and I wondered if there was a rule or a reason or if it was just convention.

So I researched the English equivalents and found a great site that explained why this was so in English and how it applied to different adjectives. I now understand the reson perfectly in both French and English as the "pattern" is the same.

used to + infinitve So I used to wonder why but it would mean that you don't wonder about this any more. eg "I used to wonder why parents loved their obnoxious children so much. Now that I have my own obnoxious child, I understand (and I don't wonder any more)"

I am guessing that you still wonder about similarities in language from time to time, because there are so many different idioms that there is always a new one popping up that needs a new explanation. Because of this, we would say I sometimes/often wonder why... or *I have sometimes/often wondered why...."

And yes - I do wonder about the similarities of idioms across so many miles. Equally fascinating are the differences :

It's raining cats and dogs BUT *Il pleut des cordes".

Think of and think about are not usually interchangeable. There is a difference in the meaning, but it does depend on the situation, the complexity of the thought that is being processed and the tense used.

When I say I will think of a word, the preposition of in this sentence means that I will be sifting through my brain (after I have dusted off the cobwebs) and I will find a word that I want to use.

Once I have found that word, I can then think about it. BUT - because a word doesn't require much thought once you have it in your head, I would be unlikey to say I am thinking about a word.

(We often say I just can't think of the right word or I just can't find the right word - we wouldn't say I just can't think about the right word)

I would then say OK - I am now thinking of a word The present continous means that the word is in my thoughts.

I could say I am thinking about a word, but it just isn't quite right becasue a word, once it is in your head, requires no further processing.

BUT *I keep thinking about that word - it's a really strange one. I wonder what its origins are"

I have been thinking about what you said and I don't agree with you

When I saw our daughter dressed for the ball, I thought of the first time I met you, and now I can't stop thinking about it Initially, it was a thought that popped into my head when I was reminded by the sight of our beautiful daughter (think of), but then I kept thinking so the preposition changes to reflect this (think about).

Phew!! I have probably confused you :(

Q3 - Can I consume it?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Konrad-Michal
Konrad-Michal
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And what would a wife say to a sailor who is going to come back no sooner than in half a year: "Think of me" or "Think about me"?

Should be très (accent grave) and not *trés (accent aigu).

A3 - You can't consume it.

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Konrad-Michal
Konrad-Michal
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Do you think that similarities in idioms are related to the common roots of the Indo-European family of languages or maybe they are quite young and are simply the loan translations?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

Thanks. For some unknown reason, I ALWAYS put the wrong accent on très. I usually look it up as I can never remember - I know the sound is like père and mère, but I just can't seem to get it to stick (must be the cobwebs)!!

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

Unfortunately I don't enough about the origins of languages to make even a semi-educated guess. I have searched the internet, but am none the wiser. Some of the English idioms date back many centuries and their origins relate to well-known plays or poems of the time. It is hard to imagine that the same idioms developed independently of one another across the ocean though so I feel that perhaps the younger idioms are the shared ones, and the older ones are perhaps the ones which are not shared between different countries. But this is just a guess.

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

I would say Think of me in this instance, but I searched some forums and most people in the US would say Think about me.

It really is a bit tricky and the sense of the phrase changes with context. With practice and lots of exposure to different sentences using the words, the fog will lift and you will know which one to use.

In the sailor scenario, if I did say think of me, it would imply *more than once. It means that I want to be in the sailor's thoughts from to time, and kind of always in the background coming out now and again.

I guess they may be more interchangeable than I first thought, depending on region, age and education (as usual) In case you are interested in the adjective info I was talking about earlier.....

PS http://www.englishclub.com/grammar/adjectives-non-gradable.htm

I am not doing very well with my questions....

Q4 Is it alive?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Konrad-Michal
Konrad-Michal
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Thank you! I did well in the test of the English Club :) Another problem related to the gradability of adjectives is whether to use "very much" or solely "very", e.g. "very much interested" and not "very interested", but "very interesting and not "very much interesting" etc.

A4 I must answer "No" for the fourth time although in a rare use of this word it can be considered alive.

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

That's interesting. I didn't realise we weren't supposed to say very interesting. We say it all the time !! Have you been taught that it is incorrect?

Q5 - Is it warm?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Konrad-Michal
Konrad-Michal
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I said "very interesting" and not "very much interesting", meaning that the first one is correct whereas the latter - incorrect.

A5 - It can be warm, but not necessarily.

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

Sorry - I wasn't concentrating. I meant we say very interested all the time... :)

We do say very much interested, but rarely and only for emphasis. It's a bit old-fashioned - ie my kids would never say it (ages 9-19)

No, Darling, sorry I wasn't listening. I am very interested in what you were saying.

Don't bother showing Jenny how to make it. She's not very interested in cooking

Q6 - Is it bigger than a shoebox?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Konrad-Michal
Konrad-Michal
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Good to know, thanks. When I was in England 18 years ago and was living with my host, his daughter said I used some old-fashioned language :) But anyway, aren't there any participles that you cannot simply use "very" with, but you have to add "very much"?

A6 - Yes, now I can say fully "yes": it is bigger than a shoebox.

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

Enjoyed is one

I very much enjoyed our game NOT I very enjoyed our game

I have scoured the net and it is a topic very much discussed :)

This thread is very interesting - the upshot is that this is a very "fluid" area of English grammar with lots of change afoot.

http://forum.wordreference.com/showthread.php?t=1342573

I just can't find a "lesson" on it yet - I will keep searching.

Here is a little quiz - I scored 100%, but I just can't put my finger on exactly why we do or don't say one or the other!! I just think I have the rule and then an exception rears its ugly head :)

http://www.better-english.com/grammar/very.htm

Q7 - Is it man-made?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Konrad-Michal
Konrad-Michal
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Thanks a lot! I did the test as well. My score was 80%. Maybe the rule is that before adjectives there is "very" and before past participles there is "very much"? But I still don't understand why "interested" is considered an adjective, and not past participle, by the Cambridge Dictionary... Thye don't explain in this forum when the derived from a verb participle is an adjective.

A7 - Again a yes (but still it is not an object, to complicate a bit)

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

Sorry I have taken so long to get back to you!

The following verbs all have their past participle listed as an adjective in the dictionary :

bored/excited/interested and I am sure there are more.

Maybe if the past participle can be used as an adjective, it is listed as that in the dictionary because otherwise the adjective is a completely different word eg enjoy/enjoyable.

Just a quick summary of what I know so far about my word :

Not an object Not an animal Can't be consumed Not alive (but in rare use of word it can be) Can be warm, but not necessarily Bigger than a shoebox Is man-made

Q7 - Is it useful?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Konrad-Michal
Konrad-Michal
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Excuse me, I didn't notice your answer.

A8 - yes, it is useful, but one can live without it

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

Must be a man :) Haha

PS I would say Sorry here rather than excuse me. I would say excuse me if I needed to interupt someone or ask a stranger a question in the street. Or if I made a "rude" noise - burp or bottom burp for example :)

I will get back to you with a question in a bit :0

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Konrad-Michal
Konrad-Michal
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OK, thanks. And what does "Must be a man" in this context mean? I didn't catch...

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/puppy7989

It was a little joke :)

You said It is useful but one can live without it

So I said It must be a man then :)

Also you need something after catch eg I didn't catch the meaning... or else you can use get

I don't get it

I didn't get it

Q9 - Do most homes (in Western society) have at least one?

il y a 4 ans

https://www.duolingo.com/Konrad-Michal
Konrad-Michal
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OK, I see.

A9 - No, they don't

il y a 4 ans