"Nous serions allées ensemble au magasin."

Translation:We would have gone to the store together.

April 5, 2013

This discussion is locked.


why is 'went' incorrect?


The tense and mood are not good; this is past conditional:

  • we went to the store together (indicative preterit) = nous sommes allées ensemble au magasin (indicative compound past)


What is the difference between we would have gone together and we wouls have went together?


You cannot use "went" (preterit) after "have" but the past participle of "to go": gone.


What is it with the multitude of different words to seemingly just mean "would have". I have just memorised to get through the lesson which I have gone through a few times now. I can make no sense out of this at all. DL does not provide any explanation for all of this, and these have by far been the most difficult lessons to understand as I still do not understand them. Others have been confusing, but I still figured them out. Well...except for things like, for example, why it always seems to be "du lait" or "du vin" when "de" would be appropriate for other words or "le chocolat" even when it is talking about "some chocolate" or "chocolate" in general (non-specifically) and for all of those time I have had it hammered into me with other explanations that "de" is appropriate for that as well yet "chocolat" seems to be some sort of special case even with insufficient (and unhelpful) explanations otherwise. Is there a link or something to provide that can explain this? I would greatly appreciate it.


There are Tips&Notes attached to every lesson from the top of the tree down to unit "Reflexive Verbs" included.

In addition, the Internet is a mine of info when it comes to French grammar, if needed.


No. Not on this lesson. I am going through, and, for the most part, "aurait", "aurais" is used, but then, for example "serais" will be the answer. They both seemingly mean "would have". So what is the difference? When do I use which?



I gave a reply on a couple of other threads where you asked the same question - but maybe you didn't see those replies so:-

Yes "nous serions" and "nous aurions" both can translate as ""we would have" - which we use depends on the verb that follows.

The tense here is the "past conditional". It is a compound tense - that means we combine some aspect of an auxiliary verb with some aspect of the main verb. As you will know French uses two verbs as auxiliaries- "être" and "avoir".

"nous serions" is the conditional of "être"

"nous aurions" is the conditional of "avoir".

When we form the past conditional of a verb in French we must combine the conditional of an auxiliary verb (either avoir or être) and the past participle of the main verb.

Most verbs use avoir as the auxiliary - so for most verbs we use the conditional of avoir when forming the "past conditional"

However all reflexive verbs and about 16 other verbs use "être" as the auxiliary - so with these verbs we have to use the conditional of "être" when forming the past conditional.

Compare "we would have gone" with "we would have eaten"

"Aller" is one of the verbs on the list of 16 or so "être" verbs - so we use "nous serions allées"

"Manger" is not on the list - so we use "nous aurions mangé"

Checkout links for a fuller explanation and a list of the verbs that take "être" as the auxiliary when forming compound tenses.




There are Tips&Notes earlier in another lesson about the fact that a number of verbs use the auxiliary "être" and not "avoir".

Verbs of movement are among those: aller, venir, partir, monter, descendre, tomber, arriver, entrer...

More info about this here: http://french.about.com/od/grammar/a/etreverbs.htm


I don't understand what you mean the tense is not good. Can you elaborate more? What is the difference between "gone" and "went"?


Actually, both the tense and the mood were wrong.

Verbs are conjugated according to their mood and tense:

Moods are: infinitive (to go), participle, indicative, subjunctive, conditional, imperative (let's go!).

The participle, indicative, subjunctive and conditional moods have several tenses each:

Participle: present "going", past "gone".

Indicative: present "we go", continuous present "we are going", future "we will go", present perfect "we have gone", past simple "we went" past perfect "we had gone".

Conditional: present "we would go", past "we would have gone".

The indicative past simple tense translates to the French indicative compound past: "we went" = "nous sommes allé(e)s".

The conditional past tense translates to the French conditional past tense: "we would have gone" = "nous serions allé(e)s".


I put "we would have been together at the store" and was marked right, but when I saw the suggested translation it seemed that "been" was not the right word to use; was Duo wrong to let me pass?


Yes, because the French sentence contains verb "aller à" (movement) and not "être à" (static). Many French people say "j'ai été au magasin" to mean "je suis allé au magasin", but this is not proper French.

Therefore, I removed your proposal from the list of accepted translations.


why is there no liaison audible between allees and ensemble?


Is there any difference in pronunciation between "au magasin" and "aux magasins"? In transcribing the French from the audio, I wrote the latter and got marked incorrect. I have always pronounced them the same (silent x and s)...


yes they're pronounced the same. one has to figure out whether it's plural by the noun or articles before it

EDIT; i came across this listening question and gave your answer and it was correct. maybe they fixed it or there was something else wrong in your answer


It is pronounced the same, but we would by default in French use the singular form, unless specified, otherwise it looks kind of weird... So they should accept the plural as being grammatically correct, but you would never come across it, as it is not natural for us.


Why is "We would have gone together to the store wrong"? It seems to me that "together" is just as correct thete as at the end of the sentence like they want.


Would saying "ensembles" work too?


"ensemble" is an adverb here, so invariable.

"un ensemble" also exists as a noun, to mean a group, a collection, a combination...


Any tips for differentiating between "We would have gone" and "We would go" ?


we would go: nous irions


Why allées and not allés.


If "we" is 2 or more women, "allées" has to agree in feminine (auxiliary "être").


So in this case, it is just arbitrary then?


Duo has always rotated fem and masc sentences, but in any event both translations are accepted - except in dictation, because the robot does not always identify homophones and sticks to the original, written version, if you see what I mean...


Just FYI, "allés" is being marked as incorrect. Since we don't know the gender(s) of the speaker, that seems a little misleading.


I have just disabled the dictation exercise because of this homophone (and the other one: aux magasins/au magasin). Thanks.


When this was dictated I wrote allés because the speaker was male and was marked wrong for it. They wanted allées. Either they're wrong or I just don't get it.


You should not have this sentence in dictation since the audio exercise was disabled months ago...


Hello, Sitesurf -- first, I want to thank you for being one of the best Duo site moderators -- always precise and efficient. Second, I would like to let you know that the dictation format for this exercise is still active, and it continues to reject "allés." (August, 28, 2017.)


Thanks for your kind words.
Unfortunately, this is not the only sentence with this issue. The "homophone" process we had seems to not work anymore. Let's see if/when developers can fix this.


Where is the "have" in the phrase?


There is no "have" because "aller" is not constructed with the auxiliary "avoir" but "être".


Why is shop incorrect? Je ne suis pas américain !


"Shop" is accepted, if the rest of your sentence is correct, of course.


Comment dit on en français? - "We would be gone"


"Nous serions parti(e)s".


Nobody seems to have answered Tracey's question yet: why is the letter s in allées not pronounced? Especially when the final letter s in serions is, and both occur immediately before vowels.


It is not required, only optional and not necessary, in my opinion.



Are "serion" and "aurion" equivalent or is there a rule of context I'm missing?


All conjugations for "nous", any verb, mood and tense ends in -ons (with an -s).

"Serions" (would be) is the verb "être" and "aurions" is the verb "avoir" (would have).

All English verbs use the auxiliary "to have" in compound tenses, but in French, many verbs use the auxiliary "être". "Aller" is an "être" verb, so you need the auxiliary être in conditional, which is "serions".


All of these sentences seem like they could be answers to "what if" scenarios


You're almost right. Not "what if", properly, just "if"... Small nuance.

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