"These underwear cost more than a hundred euros."

Translation:Ces sous-vêtements coûtent plus de cent euros.

June 26, 2020

33 Comments
This discussion is locked.


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

It should be 'This underwear ...' 'Underwear' is a mass noun and doesn't have a plural.


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

I think that in this case, Duolingo sacrificed correct English in order to unambiguously indicate that there are multiple pairs of underwear.


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

I don't understand why English has to be sacrificed to understand French. Is this normal in language learning?


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Gord543537

Not at all. No school worth its salt and certainly no post-secondary institution would do so.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/--Roody--

I agree, Rizanola. Besides, the rule book may not like "underwear" as a plural, but it sure is common and accepted in informal usage. Without an "s" of course.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/alexmiller1201

I would say "these underwear" even if talking of one. Underwear is like pants, and is considered a "pair" while simultaneously being singular. These jeans are clean, these shorts are ugly, these underwear have a hole...


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

It's the US/UK different treatment of certain nouns once again


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

The difference is "pants/jeans/shorts", though... :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/alexmiller1201

And "panties" which is a synonym for underwear, and likely the source of the usage as a plural. Not sure why you downvoted me. It's a simple explanation of usage which is common in my area. I hope the information is useful to someone.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/alexmiller1201

I'm in the Southern US. Yes, panties is only female undies here also. It's not very common anymore. Underwear is more general and could be men's briefs, ladies' panties, bras, long (thermal) underwear tops or bottoms, slips, or camisoles.
If I hear only underwear in a sentence, I'll assume men's briefs or ladies' panties are what is meant if there is no additional context.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/luna132867

Like pants, jeans and shorts, undies and panties do share the plural s, which indicares they're countable. Underwear is not. Therefore it should be "this underwear costs" I did downvote you because this way your answer, which I believe to be wrong will not show up at the top this way. Nothing personal, just grammatics.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/alexmiller1201

I thought some more about this and asked my husband, who agrees we say "these underwear." Why do we? They are countable, as pairs. We think of underwear as a set of two, just like pants, jeans, socks, and other clothing that we put on one leg at a time and can be referred to as pairs. It doesn't have an s on the end, like many other irregular plurals.


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

It wasn't me who downvoted you! I just upvoted you to cancel that out! :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/alexmiller1201

Oh sorry! I'm too defensive. :-) Thank you.


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

Yeah, sometimes I wish you could see who did the up/downvoting. I only ever downvote offensive posts...

Where are you from, btw? Here in South Africa we only ever use "panties" to refer to (traditionally) feminine undies! :)


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

Would "plus que" also work here or does it have to be 'de'?


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

When referring to numbers, you use "de". You could say "vingt euros valent plus que vingt dollars", but then it would be a comparison like any other.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jean564934

Aha! So 'plus de' means 'more than' in the sense of counting, whereas 'plus que' means 'more than' when we are comparing things?


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

Google translate gives "plus d'une centaine d'euros" but that isn't accepted.


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

Another example of why Google Translate is not a reliable source! :)

« une centaine » = "about a hundred" which wouldn't make sense here! :)


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

ces dessous ...it means the same as "sous vêtement"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/B.Liamaix

"Sous vêtements" are clothes for women and men. "Dessous" is generally used for women underwear


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ken798791

Ces sous-vêtements coûtent plus d'une centaine d'euros.


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

That doesn't make sense because « une centaine » is "about one hundred" - you can't have "more than about"! :)


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Martyn413385

The plural form would work in English if sous-vêtements was translated as "underclothes" - which is more literal and equally valid. Hence: "These underclothes cost....etc"


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/JoanSmith0

in this series, Duo has been emphasizing the use of "ceux" and "celles" for the plural of these and those. Why now is it "ces"


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

Not quite. Ceux and celles mean "these ones" or "those ones". So, "These ones underwear cost more than a hundred euros" is broken English in the same way that "Ceux sous-vêtements coûtent plus de cent euros" would be broken French.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Gord543537

Ces is an adjective meaning 'these'

Celui, ceux, celle, celles are demonstrative pronouns, thus replacing nouns.

Therefore, "Ces sacs sont si chers! Oui, mais ceux-là sont moins chers.


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

How do we know that "cost" wasn't past tense? Why is "ces sous-vêtements ont coûté plus de cent euros" wrong?


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

You have marked my answer as incorrect but it's the same "plus de"???


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/GonzaloNav488130

Ces sous-vêtements coutent plus d'une centaine d'euros. should be accepted as well


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

No because « une centaine » means "about one hundred" - you can't say "more than about one hundred"! :)


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

"underwear" is SINGULAR. It's "this" underwear or "these" underclothes, or even "these" undergarments.

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