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French Pronouns

So I'm aware of the pronouns Je, Tu, Il, Elle, Ils, Elles, and Nous, meaning I, you, he, she, he(pl) she(pl), and we, respectively. What does Vous mean though? In school, I was taught that it means the collective they, but I'm not sure, and I've seen Ils and Elles used to represent the collective "they". Can anyone enlighten me on this?

July 6, 2020



Vous is either plural you - ie second person not third - or formal singular second person ie when being polite to strangers or betters.


People higher up the social ladder - your boss etc.


Je - I

Tu - You

Il/Elle/On - He/She/We

Nous - We

Vous - You plural OR You formal

Ils/Elles - They (masculine) plural/They (feminine) plural

So vous means you, either you are addressing a group of people, or someone like a teacher

Elles means they (an all female group you are talking about but not to)


Oh, AVincentD - you did not understand what Judit explained - it was about politeness and behaivor - and what usage is expected.


It means the plural of you. Like saying 'you guys'

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