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"You know the sort?"

Translation:Vous voyez le genre ?

April 5, 2013

28 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jschembr

Why is the translation of know here voir and not savoir? To me if you are asking someone if they know something you would use savoir or connaitre. Is using voir common or an exception?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Arjofocolovi

It's because "Vous voyez le genre ?" is a French expression, which they tried to translate the best they could. It's meant in the figurative sense, we don't really ask the person what he's seeing, we ask him if he understands the kind of thing/person we were talking about previously.

  • "C'est une fille un peu superficielle, mais très sûre d'elle, tu vois le genre ?"

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/PniB

yes, it means ' you understand the type (perhaps as in a kind of personality you are trying to describe) ? Is this correct? Even in english we use the verb 'to see' often to mean understand. Its not at all a stretch for an english speaker. :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Arjofocolovi

For example, but it can be used for objects and situations as well.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Cephlin

So you could translate it as "you've seen the type"?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mrbennet

It's in the present tense, so "you see the type" should work. "You've seen the type" would be "vous avez vu le genre," and doesn't sound so natural to me in either language.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Cephlin

You've seen the type is something I hear. For example if you're talking about teenage rascals, you might say "you know the type or you've seen the type".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/cattanp

The "voir" is figurative sort of in the sense of the English phrase "You see what I'm saying" except it refers specifically to whoever I've been talking about.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Arjofocolovi

Yes "voir" is used in the same figurative sense as "see" can be used, but the sentence "Tu/vous vois/voyez le genre" is not limited to people, it can be applied to anything, because it refers to a category of something, this something can be anything.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TomHilton1

Even if one used the literal "know" here rather than the figurative "see", I think it would be connaitre rather than savoir.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SuzanneNussbaum

It accepted, "Tu connais le type?" I was thinking of "the sort (of person who'd do such a thing)" and was thinking of "type" as meaing "personality, character, guy" (or is that usage too old-fashioned?).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sfishlock

I think this is a candidate for the idioms section


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/rljones

This is given as a multiple choice question, with another option being "Sais-tu le ordre?" The only thing wrong with that is the lack of elision: "l'ordre." This seems a "cheap shot," even for Duo.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mrbennet

Well, the sort isn't the same as the order (which is what would translate to "l'ordre"). The sort could be the action of arranging things in order, but you'd never use it to refer to the order itself.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/rljones

"L'ordre" can also mean "the kind/the type/the sort." In biology it is a classification below class, division, species. C'est un genre.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mrbennet

Actually, "un genre" is a genus, and an order is a couple of levels higher, so you have to be careful if you're translating in a biological context.

But I see your point. "Ordre" and "sort" can both mean "category" in a general sense, so you're right, it could technically work. I think "ordre" is only really used in that sense when making comparisons though.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/rljones

You are quite right; my biological classification was "out of order" (in several senses). But I'm glad you were able to decipher the muddle. Thanks.

i agree that "ordre" implies an organization or arrangement, but it is also used to refer to one level of that sequence (de même ordre).


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mrbennet

Yes, it can refer to one level (the same way "order" can in English), but only in a context where you're making a comparison. So "sais-tu l'ordre?" doesn't really work.

But there's actually a more serious problem with that sentence, which is probably the real reason it sounds wrong to me: it should use "connaître" and not "savoir".


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/rljones

In this context you are clearly right; the verb should be "connaître." But in a different situation - which of course doesn't translate the English - the sentence might be used: "Les premiers trois coureurs sont arrivés. Sais-tu l'ordre ?" Does that sound strange?

I appreciate your willingness to help me explore a bit. Merci.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mrbennet

Yes, that does work, I think.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Daniel589120

I am really confused, Is this an imperative question? I did not know that the imperative mood can be used in a question, does anyone have a reference for this usage?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sebvaillancourt

"you get the picture?" would fit so much better


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/rljones

C'est un chic type. Vous voyez le genre ? Je l'aime bien. OK ?

Both French and English have idiomatic expressions that lend themselves to many uses. One English phrase, now almost passè, is "You dig?" It takes on all the meanings that SebVe cites for "Vous voyez le genre ?", and even several others. How one understands either phrase depends on context and not on how awkward it may or may not sound in the other language. In this case, "You know the sort?" is not awkward in English. Perhaps "You know the type" is more common, but that leads to confusion with the French word "type" so it would probably not be offered for translation. Vous voyez le genre? You dig?

These differences are good to know about.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mrbennet

That's much more general. I don't think it fits well at all.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/sebvaillancourt

but that's much more what the french sentence is about and trust me I'm francophone. It's an idiom that means "you get it?", "you see the whole thing?", "you get the gist?" etc. "You know the sort?" is actually more awkward.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mrbennet

I'm francophone too, and I agree that "you know the sort?" is awkward. But to me, "you get the picture?" is about a broader picture than "vous voyez le genre?", which is about the gist of something reasonably specific. It could work - there's certainly overlap - but I don't think it's all that good a fit.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Halonspate

I put Vous voyez le genre and it refuses that answer. It will only accept Voud voyez le classe. Why?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/amharris1962

Why is it "tu vois" instead of "tu sais"?

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