"Elle a un portefeuille."

Translation:She has a wallet.

March 28, 2013

60 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/lucykeating

In british english you would never say 'she has a wallet', women have purses

August 10, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/ThanKwee

In American English one can say "she has a wallet". But a wallet is something that you put in a purse or handbag.

http://shop.nordstrom.com/c/wallets-for-women?segmentEngine=Default

http://www1.macys.com/cms/slp/2/Womens-Purses

This explains the confusion.

QUOTE: "In British English, a purse is more of a wallet and that’s the meaning I’ve been accustomed to my whole life. So I carry a purse in my handbag, like you might say that you carry a wallet in your purse. You can imagine how funny it was when I first heard people saying that they like to fit a bottle of water in their purse. That’s one giant purse."

http://youlookfab.com/2009/04/17/a-wallet-is-a-purse-which-is-also-a-handbag/

October 1, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/sumemon

But in American a purse is a handbag

August 2, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/n6zs
  • 1722

If you are looking at it from US English, then un portefeuille is a billfold or wallet (for a man) or a woman's wallet (not to be confused with un porte-monnaie, a coin purse), which you can put inside your "sac à main" (handbag or purse, that is the larger bag, not the little one). To further confuse things, some men may carry a man's "purse", similar in function though smaller in size than a woman's sac à main, handbag (UK, US) or purse (US).

August 11, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/ThanKwee

This explains the confusion.

QUOTE: "In British English, a purse is more of a wallet and that’s the meaning I’ve been accustomed to my whole life. So I carry a purse in my handbag, like you might say that you carry a wallet in your purse. You can imagine how funny it was when I first heard people saying that they like to fit a bottle of water in their purse. That’s one giant purse."

http://youlookfab.com/2009/04/17/a-wallet-is-a-purse-which-is-also-a-handbag/

October 1, 2013

https://www.duolingo.com/n6zs
  • 1722

The issue is not what you might prefer to say but what does the French sentence mean. THIS sentence "Elle a un portefeuille" means "she has a wallet". The meaning of "portefeuille" does not depend on what British speakers might be thinking. If you want to say "she has a purse" (meaning a purse for keeping one's coins), that is "elle a un porte-monnaie". This "purse" is to be distinguished from "un sac-à-main" (a handbag, also called a purse). Think of it this way:

  • un portefeuille is where you keep your folding money, credit cards, driver license, etc.
  • un porte-monnaie is used to keep your loose change/coins, though you might put a bit of currency in there as well, even though it is not designed for that.
August 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Peter00000001

In British English a purse is where a woman would keep credit cards, driver's licence etc and coins. A wallet is the same, but for a man.

September 11, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/oscitare

"Portefeuille" can also mean "briefcase" or "portfolio."

November 12, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/WolkZayets

I wrote "briefcase" in my answer and it was counted wrong, even though I translated "portefeuille" as "briefcase" in two earlier sentences and it was counted right then.

May 24, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf

There was a mistake: a briefcase is not correct to translate "un portefeuille".

A briefcase is "une serviette, un porte-document, une mallette". Minimum size: enough to hold A4 papers, whereas "un portefeuille" should hold in your pocket.

August 19, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/TheC4Defuser

So women can't have wallets then? Why not?

May 31, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/n6zs
  • 1722

The point is the "un portefeuille" is the thing that you put your folding money and credit cards in. Some people call it a wallet, others call it a billfold, some call it a purse. Most women put their "portefeuille" inside of their "sac à main" (handbag or purse). Sometimes ladies carry a « porte-monnaie » which is a "coin purse" which also goes inside the sac à main. So sometimes the same word (purse) is used in different ways.

August 11, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/toxanix

Buying school supplies I learned that portefeuille can also mean portfolio... I don't use the word often but it'd be a nice thing to add to suggestions under the word.

July 29, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf

"Un portfolio" is typically a big book used by photographers or illustrators to show their work.

August 1, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/philipo79

I know a girl that carries a wallet since she doesn't like handbags and can put it in her pocket. But I think it would be a little harder to explain that in French. Google portefeuille and images of wallets and purses (uk english) comes up

February 21, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/n6zs
  • 1722

Pas de problème, c'est encore un portefeuille.

August 11, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/francophoney

It's so strange that this compound word is masculine, while its constituents are both feminine.

September 3, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf

No, "porte" is not a feminine constituent, it is verb "porter" (carry).

But indeed all compound words with "porte" are masculine.

September 4, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/francophoney

Of course. That makes much more sense. Thank you.

September 4, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/marmaladeskies76

billfold!?!

September 8, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/ThanKwee

Yes, that is accepted.

September 8, 2014

https://www.duolingo.com/-OliviaD-

I thought is was a binder. Oops

June 9, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/toxanix

It can actually mean portfolio as well, binder is similar to portfolio correct?

July 29, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/MementoMori666

I believe a portfolio refers to those display-book things with the clear plastic sheets, whereas a binder is a cardboard folder with rings in it.

August 21, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/n6zs
  • 1722

A portfolio (EN) for displaying artwork is "un dossier". The portfolio that may be used as FR "portefeuille" is a financial portfolio, i.e., the collection of one's stock market investments. A binder for putting papers in is "un classeur".

August 29, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/n6zs
  • 1722

A binder (usually a 3-ring binder) is called "un classeur".

August 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf

For your info, in France, "les classeurs" usually have 2 or 4 rings (des anneaux).

August 29, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Jenni442559

If you write the wrong translation "she is a wallet" the rocommended translation is "she's a wallet". She's is not a contraction of she has.

July 21, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/MementoMori666

It can be, actually. As with "I have a wallet", you can shorten it to "I've a wallet".

August 21, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/n6zs
  • 1722

Many people do this but it is problematic. Better to use "I have got ..." or "she has got ..." rather than "I've" or "she's" when referring to possession. Contrary to certain regional use, "has/have" should not be contracted when it means "to possess", but only when it is used as an auxiliary verb, hence "she has got" (typically BrE).

August 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/MementoMori666

Fair enough.

September 19, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/WolkZayets

She's been working overtime = She has been working overtime

July 7, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/n6zs
  • 1722

It's fine to contract "has" when it is used as an auxiliary verb as shown in your example.

August 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Tootie-Mae

The program translates le portefeuille as wallet or billfold. I chose billfold, but the program said it was incorrect and should be wallet? The noun itself if masculine. Does it matter if the owner of it is a female? Or is it just a program glitch?

November 11, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/5clothilde7

Tootie-Mae, The gender of nouns in French (and in other languages as well) is assigned. So, nouns have a quality, as it were, of "he-ness" or "she-ness". It does not matter who is using the thing, holding, wanting, cleaning, etc. This is a source of fun for all who learn with English as a mother language.

November 14, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Tootie-Mae

Thanks for the reply, but it doesn't answer the question which is: "Why was wallet correct but billfold deemed incorrect?

November 15, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf

"billfold" is correct and accepted.

November 16, 2016

https://www.duolingo.com/AbhishekMa815100

If pursw is wrong, then what is the French translation of purse?

March 12, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf

Un portemonnaie (coin purse for anyone, because "monnaie" = change/coins) or une pochette (British English purse for ladies).

March 12, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/sumemon

My dictionary gives three meanings for pochette''petite poche placee en haut et a gauche d'un veston.2-petit mouchoir de fantaisie que l'on met dans cette poche,3 sachet de papier,d'etoffe dans lequel on place des photographies, des cartes etc (please excuse lack of accents)

March 12, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf

There is one definition missing: a small handbag, which would be good to translate the British English "purse".

March 13, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/sumemon

Perhaps you should send a message to DFC telling them their entry is deficient

May 18, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/WolkZayets

That can also be called a purse in American English.

February 1, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Rory445430

Purse and wallet have the same meaning in UK English.

April 6, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/WolkZayets

They don't have the same meaning in American English.

"Purse"-- Handbag used by women

"Wallet"-- usually (but not always) foldable container for money and credit cards, driver's licenses, etc. Mostly associated with men but women can have wallets, too.

"Coin purse"-- small receptacle for carrying coins, used by both men and women

May 24, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/fussydussypoo

I thought the french word for purse/wallet was 'portemonnaie'

May 18, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf

purse (for coins) = un portemonnaie / un porte-monnaie (monnaie means "change")

wallet (for cards, bank notes) = un portefeuille (feuille means "leaf/sheet").

May 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/MartinAaro12

What the hell is a "billfold"?!

July 7, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/GeorginaMa967371

In England there is no such thing as a billfold

August 12, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/WolkZayets

The Ettinger Company begs to differ.

https://www.ettinger.co.uk/Men/Wallets/Billfold-Wallets

August 12, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/n6zs
  • 1722

When you are on Duolingo, you have entered a broader world of English and will be exposed to other words. In AmE, "wallet" is used but "billfold" is commonly understood as the same thing.

August 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/HughMcGarr

And I'd certainly never use the word 'billfold' that is a purely American word. Is this not the word for briefcase? As in 'carry paper?

November 1, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/WolkZayets

This London, UK company sells billfolds.

https://www.ettinger.co.uk/Men/Wallets/Billfold-Wallets

November 1, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Sitesurf

You are on the wrong track here: "un portefeuille" is not a briefcase, but a "carry bank notes".

November 2, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Marko246521

"She has a purse", should be accepted as an answer. Does Duolingo want its users to come exclusively from the USA? In the UK ladies carry money and credit cards in purses not wallets. If Duolingo accepts "des frites" as "chips", it should accept that in British English "elle" would "a" a purse and not a wallet.

February 1, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/WolkZayets

There are retailers in the UK that sell wallets for women

https://uk.burberry.com/womens-wallets/

March 8, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Allan754642

Purse = wallet

March 7, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/WolkZayets

Not in American English, where purse = lady's handbag and wallet is a container for money, credit cards, etc., that can be carried in a purse (or often, in a pocket).

March 8, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Hassan323496

I wrote "she has a purs" and I was wronged, then why wallet? I only know men to carry wallet not women

December 3, 2018
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