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The singular is "elle est", and the plural is "elles sont", so even if "elle" sounds like "elles", the verb's conjugation is different.
So yeah, you'll just know depending on the verb that comes after ELLE and ELLES
The word "rouges" plural also gives a clue. If it were "elle", then we would have "rouge" singular.
So then, "the girls are red" isn't acceptable? I guess it's just difficult to understand that due to being a native english speaker, and not having the whole "feminine/masculine" thing.
"elles" can mean "the girls" but it is not what you are asked for here. and remember that "elles" could also refer to strawberries or dresses...
Yes, if there are several boys, it is "ils" several girls is "elles" if it is a mixed gender group, it is "ils" :)
I thought "elles" could only be referred to people, so it would make no sense to say: they are red. Unless they got a sunburn... But reading the comments I learned it can be used to mean a group of feminine objetcs.
I don't think so. I know in Korea, "red" is used to denote "communists" by the conservatives but in the west, people just say "communist." I have only heard of the term "red" for communist being used in my history classes (but it does indeed mean communist in English). In my 5 years of studying French, I have never encountered the word "red" being used for communist, so I guess even if it is used, it is extremely outdated.
Edit: Yes, it can mean that. However, it is a perjorative term.
In another question (Ils sont rouges), I respond They are flushed, and I get wrong answer. In which cases can I certainly use flush?