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  5. "It is eating a spider."

"It is eating a spider."

Translation:Il mange une araignée.

April 7, 2013

81 Comments


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

Araignee is so hard to spell!


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Rick200271

yes, took me awhile too but broke it up into 2 separate words--araig and nee---I knew it started with ar


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

I thought "on" is "it"...not sure how they came to the conclusion that 'it' is 'il'..


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

No problem, here is an example: English: It (a duck) eats a spider French: Il (un canard) mange une araignée


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

I think "on" is used when speaking in general. So "on mange une araignée", one in general would eat the spider. Or I think it could also mean "we". Correct me if im wrong!


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

Right, "on" has to do with humans: we, you, one, someone, they...

It translates to "on" only in impersonal phrases, like:

it is necessary to eat (we must/have to eat, or you or everybody, etc) = on doit manger or nous devons manger, il faut manger, il faut que l'on mange, etc...

The sentence here has "it" as a real subject, this is not an impersonal formula.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MzMolly65

Thank you, best explanation for me so far.


[deactivated user]

    I thought the same thing. On translates to 'One". So, here I guess it wouldn't mean the same thing. I found this helpful: http://www.fluentfrenchnow.com/french-conversation-using-the-awesome-pronoun-on/


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

    Why aren't spiders allowed to be males but chats can be both male and female? What is this forced a-sexuality!


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

    That is where I always get stuff wrong!


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

    Araignée is the general terme for spider, so it has a predetermined gender (like all words in French). Sometimes, for family/common animals (cats, dogs, lions, bears, etc) there is a specific terme for each gender, but you can always take the general terme and add "mâle" or "femelle" after to specify


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Komptra-Kalla

    I think it's just that araignee is a female word. I guess the word spider in French is considered to be female, and there is no male word.


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

    My sample said " It is eating a spider" and i had to choose all the correct translations. I chose "Il mange une araignee" But not "Elle mange une araignee"" because it was femenine and should have read ""she is "". They marked it wrong and I lost a heart . In English and French" It /il""is not femenine .


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

    "it" can be an object, a concept, an animal.

    In French, all objects, concepts and animals (= all nouns in general) have a gender.

    that is why "it" can translate to "il" or "elle"


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/vince6501

    In this case would il or elle be correct?


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

    This is the first time in my life i have come across "cela" in a translation. Also, i have lost another heart, as usual...


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/P4rz3val

    That makes five of us. I don't know what it means and there wasn't an explination either :/


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Bbryant6

    Oddly enough I got cela on another question but when I used here I was marked wrong :(


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

    The question asked me to choose the correct translation to "it is eating a spider ". I chose "il mange une araignée" instead of "elle mange une araignée" , but I don't understand why I'm wrong. Can't "It" be translated as either "Il" or "Elle" in French? Why does it have to be Elle/she in this example?


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

    "it" can represent a masculine or a feminine noun, this is why it can translate to "il" or "elle".


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

    I agree. The same thing happened to me. They wanted us to mark BOTH answers , but to me It was masculine , not femenine Elle/she


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

    I was under the impression that "c'est" meant it is, however when i wrote "c'est mange une araignée" it was incorrect - where did i go wrong?


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

    I was wondering the same thing... :/


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

    "it is eating" is a continuous present, that can translate to "il mange" or "elle mange" (present).

    "it is + adjective", like "it is blue" can translate to "il est bleu", "elle est bleue" or "c'est bleu".

    "it is + modified noun", like "it is a turtle" translates to "c'est une tortue", because of the modifier "une".

    And there are a lot of phrases with "it is + something" that can have various more or less idiomatic translations:

    • it is late = il est tard
    • it is Monday = nous sommes lundi / on est lundi

    So, there is no rule of thumb for a standard translation for "it is".


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

    With elle / il / on is 'on' the same as the english 'one'? E.g. 'One might say that' or 'one wonders' which can be used to refer to any person, singular or plural. I assumed in the past that on meant it, but now I can see that that is wrong.


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

    yes, that is right, "on" is like the English "one", but I seem to understand that nobody uses it nowadays because it sounds dated and too formal.

    On the contrary, "on" is a modern concept that is tolerated but not very correct because we should always be able to find something more formal to replace it, at least in writing.

    "On" is a often a default of "we" because it is easier to conjugate than "we".


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Redsparrow7

    Thanks, I was wondering about "on" as well.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Awesome74

    how can i tell whether i would use the word "is" in certain sentences?


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

    If you understand what "is eating" stands for, you will know:

    • "he is eating" means "he is in the process of eating", this action is in progress now.
    • therefore "is eating" is a continuous present form, with "to be", conjugated, and "to eat" in gerund.
    • French does not have a similar verbal form.

    Therefore, "he is eating" can translate to:

    • il mange (= he eats)
    • il est en train de manger, with "être", conjugated + adverbial phrase "en train de" (= in the process of) + verb in infinitive.

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

    Oh my God! I couldn't, for the life of mine, understand the c'est argument. Sitesurf, I'm sorry I don't know technical words, could you please explain to me in simple language what exactly is wrong with c'est mange une araignee?


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

    Look at the sentence as a whole story. It describes the action of an animal (hopefully not a human being) eating a spider.

    -- About the subject of the verb (performing the action of eating):

    If you name the animal, you say "the frog is eating a spider".
    If you do not name the animal, you say "it is eating a spider".

    In French, this is the same:

    • "la grenouille mange une araignée" - "elle mange une araignée.

    If the animal is not "une grenouille" (feminine) but "un serpent" (a snake, masculine), you will get:

    • "le serpent mange une araignée" - "il mange une araignée".

    "it", "il" and "elle" are personal pronouns (like I/je, you/vous, etc). They replace a noun or a name.

    -- About the form of the verb:

    "is eating" is a continuous present, meaning that this event is currently in process at the time we speak.

    This form of verb does not exist in French and this is why "is eating" cannot translate to "est mange", but only to "mange".

    Therefore, "it is eating a spider" = "il/elle mange une araignée."


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Awesome74

    Oh ok, I get it, thanks


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

    Why can't you use "ça"?


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

    "ça" means "that", so you may not want to refer to an animal with "that"


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

    Yuck!It's awful!


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

    If you remember that "il" can mean it (an animal for ex), it will be less awful.


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

    on mange une araignée, would be we eat une araignée


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

    "on" can be anyone, but in this case, probably another animal...


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ashima95

    Just wondering- Can the answer be 'c'est manger un araignèe' as well?


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

    no, "is eating" is a continuous present. and subject "it" represents an animal.


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

    I was given Il or elle mange une araignee. Help someone I don't get how il or elle is it.


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

    "it" = il or elle - remember that animals and objects can be masculine or feminine in French, hence the use of personal pronouns "il" or "elle" to mean "it".


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

    thank you, simple. Sitesurf to the rescue.. appreciate it.


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

    "it is eating a spider" - "ce mange une araignée" was marked wrong, because I should've used ça instead of ce. :(


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

    "ce" as a pronoun is mainly used with verb être: c'est or ce sont.

    "it" is a pronoun, that can refer to a masculine or feminine noun.

    In this instance, "it" has to be an animal eating spiders, which can be (in French) masculine "il" or feminine "elle".

    It is far less likely that "it" would represent an inanimate object since these don't really "eat" anything at all.


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

    Why isn't it il mangent une arignée


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

    If it were plural "ils mangent" you should hear the ending T as a liaison with "une"


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TonyJiang2

    it is = c'est il mange is a phrase for he eats Problem!!!


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

    it is = c'est only when followed by a modified noun

    it is a spider = c'est une araignée


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Doobius1

    Why is spider feminine? They seem pretty masculine to me.


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

    Une araignée is indeed feminine (the suffix -ée is most often feminine).

    If we want to refer to a male spider, we use "une araignée mâle".


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

    Can you use 'ça' instead of 'il'?


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

    Remember: "ça" is short from "cela" and means "that thing".

    In this sentence it is most probable that another animal (and not a thing) is eating a spider.

    So, no, "ça" cannot translate "it" in this sentence.


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/fr224

    Why can I not say "ce mange une araignée"?


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

    "ce" as a demonstrative pronoun is used with "être" and "pouvoir", not with other verbs.

    Obviously, in this sentence, "it" refers to an animal, so in French the animal can be masculine or feminine and you can use the personal pronouns "il" or "elle".


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DianaR716941

    Why is "It is" not "C'est" rather than "Il mange"?


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

    "it" represents some non-human living being able to eat a spider

    You therefore need a personal pronoun representing a living being, that can be masculine or feminine, ie "il" or "elle".


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Angel831279

    Elle mange une araignée. This is the sentence I got. So Elle is also correct here.


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

    Yes, especially if "elle" refers to a feminine animal, like "une grenouille" (frog).


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

    I put "il mange de une araignée". I'am always leaving out articles, so I guess this time I added an extra one in there... like saying "je mange des pates" or "je bois du lait"... I guess I should have done... "il mange de la araignée" (definite versus indefinite)??


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

    or maybe I should answer my own question, after thinking a minute longer: "de" is usually for "some" when we use it for manger or boire, right? so if it said "it eats some spiders" I'd put "il mange des araignées". Oops.


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

    I kept getting this wrong, because I said, Il est mange une arraignee. I said this because it says "it IS eating a spider" so I added est in it. But that is wrong. Why don't you add est for is?


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

    Next time, please read the whole thread and the Tips and Notes in the lesson (from a PC if you don't see them all on your screen).

    If you understand what "is eating" stands for, you will know:

    • "he is eating" means "he is in the process of eating", this action is in progress now.
      Therefore "is eating" is a continuous present form, with "to be", conjugated, and "to eat" in gerund. French does not have a similar verbal form.

    So, "he is eating" can translate to:

    • il mange (= he eats)
    • il est en train de manger, with "être", conjugated + adverbial phrase "en train de" (= in the process of) + verb in infinitive.

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

    I have a problem. They gave the option to chose the word but they only gave elle instead of il . How is this possible


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

    why is a spider feminine? ;^; how i struggle araignee whyy


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Redsparrow7

    Could I also use "C'est" for "it is" instead of "il"?


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

    No, because "it" represents a real subject, another animal most probably.


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

    "c'set" translate to "it is" and to say that "it's eating a spider" translates to "c'est mange une araignée" seems pretty accurate to me.


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

    No, your thinking is not right.

    "it is eating" uses a personal pronoun (it) as the subject, representing an animal, and the verb is in continuous present.

    "it" can translate to "il " or "elle", depending on the gender of the animal in question, and French does not have continuous tenses.

    it is eating = il/elle mange (simple present)


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jane918134

    how can il mange mean 'he eats' and mean 'it eats'. how can they both mean the same thing??


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

    The French personal pronoun "il" can be a "he", a masculine animal or thing "it" or an impersonal "it":

    • Il est professeur = He is a teacher (man)
    • Il est insectivore = It is insectivorous (masculine animal, like a hedgehog/un hérisson)
    • Il marche avec des piles = It works with batteries (masculine thing, like a robot/un robot)
    • Il pleut = It is raining. (nobody or nothing)

    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jaime31301

    I think there is a typo should it be "he is eating a spider" instead of "it is eating a spider"?? Help please fix this.


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

    Potentially, all insectivorous animals can eat spiders (it). It is much rarer among human beings (he).


    https://www.duolingo.com/profile/electric-marrow

    why not c'est mange une araignee?


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

    "Is eating" is a continuous present verbal form, which does not exist in French. To translate it, you need the French simple present: "Il/Elle mange une araignée".


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

    How would you know that it’s not saying “he is eating a spider” or “it is eating a spider” (sorry if this is an obvious question haha)


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

    I thought "C'est" should be It is.

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