"You have blood on your T-shirt."

Translation:Tu as du sang sur ton T-shirt.

July 4, 2020

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Vous avez du sang sur votre T-shirt.


Could someone please explain why "du" is in this equation? You have blood on your T-shirt seems to me to be about "avoir" only.


French often requires an article when English doesn't. In most cases you are going to have to use an article (or some other determiner) for a noun coming after avoir. The main exceptions are specific expressions, like avoir faim, avoir mal à, etc.

In this sentence we do need an article in French. It can't be the definite article, because the English sentence doesn't mention some specific blood. The English sentence means the same thing as if it said "you have some blood on your shirt". We need to say that there is some blood--there's blood but we're not talking about which blood or how much. So we need to use the partitive article, which for sang is du.


you have some blood seems more likely than you have the blood.


Would a French person be more likely to say Tu as du sang or Il y a du sang to convey this meaning? I used il y a because it sounded better to me. Tu as du sang is for me one of those sentences that apparently is correct but really sounds like it shouldn't be because it's such a literal translation of the English. Like the first time I heard "laissez les bons temps rouler," I thought that could not possibly be correct. (Turns out it's a Cajun calque of the English, so it makes sense that it sounds too literal.)

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