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https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CX948

Veuillez and S'il Vous Plaît (Reposted for Clarifications Without Misleading Information)

I am aware that veuillez is translated as please according to most contexts (but it's literally just the second-person imperative conjugation -- I'm not sure if it's only an imperative conjugation or that it's just old), and s'il vous plait also translates to please in all contexts (there may be some that it doesn't; again, I can't be too sure), which literally means if it pleases you. I think that what I can't understand is the word veuillez; to me, it sounds like a command to want something, which I find odd because one cannot force another to desired something. This may be where I need assistance.


Also, I read in many other forums that veuillez is simply more formal than s'il vous plaît or (definitely) s'il te plaît. This might help in shortening answers.

May 22, 2020

11 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jimmy54103

My understanding is that "veuillez" expresses in a polite manner something like "would you do this?".

Allez à l’arrière du bus (s’il vous plaît) — is an order, albeit a polite one

Veuillez aller à l’arrière du bus — is less direct, a softer imperative


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

I could be wrong but I think of it as "you want to...."

For example, in the region I'm from, we might give directions by saying "You'll want to take the third left turn after the stop light...."

So to me veuillez makes sense when requesting that someone do something.
But that's just how I think of it in my head. I could be way off base!

Good question.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jojo553168

I'm not sure if it's only an imperative conjugation or that it's just old)

Yes, it is an old conjugation of vouloir, in the imperative mood, which is an information you should learn to find by yourself, it will become useful.

Also, I read in many other forums that veuillez is simply more formal than s'il vous plaît or (definitely) s'il te plaît. This might help in shortening answers.

Veuillez is not a simple alternative to s'il vous plaît. It is a very specific sentence structure, and you can't always use one for the other.  And it can't shorten answers because it works only when you ask someone to do something. You can't use it in an answer. And you tend to add s'il vous plaît in oral speech anyway. 

Actually veuillez faire ceci ou cela is really something you would say in very few occasions. You'll find that expression in official letters (Veuillez trouver ci-joint le document x... or Veuillez agréer, Monsieur, l’expression de mes sentiments distingués.).
Be prepared to read it sometimes, but in oral speech, don't use it.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kati673185

tellement beau!

"Veuillez agréer, Monsieur, l’expression de mes sentiments distingués."

comme: Je vous pris de bien vouloir


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jojo553168

Of course! Je vous pris de bien vouloir is a beautiful alternative to veuillez.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/AStupidName11

"Je vous prie", pas "je vous pris". C'est le verbe prier, pas prendre ;)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CX948

Oh, I meant that the last remark would help in shortening the answers of those who respond to my discussion.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jojo553168

Oh ok ☺ !


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kati673185

do not forget that francais was the language of the diplomacy


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/CX948

I found that veuillez is used for instructions and s'il vous plait is for requests. Another says that they're interchangeable. I'm baffled.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/angus390025

uncanny. There was a thread bout veuillez just recently.

Yes, it is the second-person imperative conjugation of vouloir. I've seen on ATM screens in France. That's the only time I ever remember seeing it, but I'm sure a native could give you more examples. After you push the buttons for your transaction it says "Opération en cours, veuillez patienter." Or something like that.

Also, s'il vous plaît does mean "if it pleases you."

Both are used in places where English people say Please. It's syrupy politeness, of course. When the King says "if you please" he doesn't really mean that you should serve only if it pleases you. It means that he requires your service. Best not to think too literally when using hyperpolitically correct phrases. It's like when you watch talking heads on the news and one of them says "I'm not sure I can agree with that." What he really means is "You must be quite mad if think that I can possibly believe the lies that you are spreading" but such a response would come off as unnecessarily blunt.

Similarly, when the ATM tells you that you will want to be patient, it's just saying "okay, man, give me a minute to sort it out. You'll get your money. Chill." It's just doing it in a way that sounds very polite.

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