Uns and Unes
Bonjour à tous !
Recently, I came across two words - ''uns'' and ''unes''. I had never seen these words before, so I looked them up. Google translate said they both meant ''each'' (I know I shouldn't trust google translate, but anyway...) but I didn't understand their usage. So I searched and searched, trawling the internet for explanations, but to no avail. I found absolutely nothing. So if anyone has any explanations for these two words, your help would be greatly appreciated.
Merci beaucoup, au revoir !
I would translate "uns" and "unes" with "ones", depending on the grammatical gender.
When you want to translate "someone" into French, you would get "quelqu'un". As a consequence, "quelques-uns" and "quelques-unes" are the plural forms of it ("some" or "a few"), as in "quelques-uns des journalistes" ("some of the journalists").
Another expression that comes to my mind is "les uns et les autres", meaning "each other", more literally "the ones and the others"; e.g. "Nous nous aidons les uns et les autres" ("We help each other"). I believe you could derive it from "l'un et l'autre", meaning "both" (or "the one and the other"), which you could have heard of already.
A little correction : "each other" would actually be "les uns les autres", without the et -> "Respectons-nous les uns les autres".
"Les uns et les autres" would mean a different thing, I guess "the ones, and the others" but I don't know if it is very idiomatic in english. Maybe "each one of them". Here is an example from Dictionnaire Philosophique de Voltaire : “Nous respectons plus les morts que les vivants. Il aurait fallu respecter les uns et les autres.”
Another from an Oscar Wilde translation : “Les hommes se marient parce qu'ils sont fatigués. Les femmes parce qu'elles sont curieuses. Les uns et les autres sont déçus.”