"Il ne regarde des films romantiques que le lundi."
Translation:He watches romantic movies only on Mondays.
19 CommentsThis discussion is locked.
"Il ne regarde que les films romantiques le lundi" means that on Monday he only watches romantic films and nothing else. The suggested sentence means that he only watches romantic films on mondays, and he doesn't watch them on other days, but he may also watch other films on Mondays.
Your suggested sentence is ambiguous, it literally means that on Mondays he does nothing but watch romantic films., but that is probably not what you meant.
We often position of the word "only" loosely in English, expecting the reader to know what we mean, rather than saying exactly what we mean.
You are correct, it is ambiguous and the pedantic interpretation would be, as you said, that he does nothing but watch romantic films on Mondays. But in common usage the interpretation would be "He watches only romantic films on Mondays." A less common interpretation would be "He watches romantic films only on Mondays." Gotta love English.
Not me -- I keep overthinking till I get it.
"Il regarde seulement des films romantiques le lundi." = "He only watches romantic movies on Mondays."
"Il ne regarde que des films romantiques le lundi." = He watches only romantic movies on Mondays.
"Il ne regarde des films romantiques que le lundi." = "He watches romantic movies on Mondays only."
"Il regarde des films romantiques seulement le lundi." = "He watches romantic movies on only Mondays."
"He watches romantic movies only on Mondays." This could mean any one of the latter three, IMHO. It depends on how it is parsed, intonation, etc. which is why I avoid it in writing. It isn't really wrong, but needs context . . .
'He only watches ... on Mondays' was rejected, probably the reason is that the placement of 'only' implies that on Mondays he does nothing else. I do not think that there is an iron-clad rule to the effect, interpretations are based on context and not only on word order, and the former can trump the latter. Anyway there is a large degree of ambiguity of the sentence especially when standing in isolation