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  5. "Qu'est-ce qu'elle allume ?"

"Qu'est-ce qu'elle allume ?"

Translation:What does she turn on?

May 30, 2013



This is a very confusing sentence. Do you use "allume" if someone is turning on the gas or the television, or only the lights?

  • 1832

Allumer has a variety of meanings in the sense of lighting (something) up, turning (something) on, including turning/switching on a light; but it can also mean to start (something), or with "se" to mean arouse (passion), break out (e.g., war), or catch fire.


Am I right in understanding that if this was 'qui est-ce qu'elle s'allume?' it would mean 'who is she turning on?' And if it said 'qui est-ce qui elle s'allume?' it would mean 'who is turning her on?'


You correctly understood the meaning of the word, but your structure is not good, because of the use of the pronoun "s'". The first pronoun (the main one) is the subject of your sentence, the second pronoun is the person who is concerned by the action.

"I turn her on." = "Je l'allume."

"She turns me on." = "Elle m'allume."

"Who is she turning on?" = "Qui allume-t-elle"? (No second pronoun)

"Who is turning her on?" = "Qui l'allume?" or "Qui est-ce qui l'allume?"

"They are turning on each other." = "Ils s'allument l'un l'autre." (As a French native, not sure of this English sentence)


At the beginning they turn each other on. Later, they may turn on each other.


Vraiment. Well said.


J'allume ma voiture? Would this be correct?


For a car it's "demarrer". Je démarre ma voiture.


Taking the phrase to google it looks like it is possible but not common. More common seems to be using allume to mean turn on when talking about PS3. Haha


Ou peut-être un feu. ;-)


I definitely remember the sentence "J'allume ma ordinature" (I turn on my computer) being used in my French class, so it can work for other objects


I read that it can mean turns on the television, not sure about gas.


HAHA! I thought that was What turns her on!


Exactly what I thought. And would very much like to know what... would be the french phrase for that?


Elle m'excite. or, possibly- Elle me déclenche.


In fact, "Elle m'excite" is correct, by maybe a little bit too obvious for the meaning we want here. "Elle m'allume" is very good. "Elle me déclenche" sounds really weird, just like to start a bomb...


i could definitely make "elle me déclenche" work as an innuendo. hahaha. also, great profile pic. : )


Le monde avec son sourire.



Another correct solution(Duo): "What is she lighting?"


They also accept "What is she lighting up?"


Moi, elle allume, moi.


You're not an object. For a human it will be qui est-ce ....


I think correct would be: elle m'allumne. Check out n6zs's comment above.


Probably that thing she was charging up.


Could allumer mean to enlight?

  • 1832

"Enlight" is not a word. Perhaps you mean "enlighten". That would be "éclairer". http://www.larousse.fr/dictionnaires/francais-anglais/%C3%A9clairer/27403


'Quest ce quelle allume ' whats wrong with this??


You need the apostrophe between Qu and est since it is a contraction of Que and est. Quelle means "which" (feminine), while qu'elle means "that she".

"Qu'est-ce qu'elle allume" is the correct version, you do need all apostrophers and strokes.


I tried 'Who is she turning on'. Is it just me being dirty minded, or should that be a possible correct answer. (don't actually know if the expression 'to turn someone on' exists i French.


Oui on peut dire allumer quelqu'un. Mais la question commencerait par QUI pas QUE


Does this teach us French from Canada or France?


Paris, the most common French.


Not really the most common (the French-speaking world is much larger than Paris, and not even all French people speak Parisian French), but a popular choice for language textbooks worldwide. (Leading many Anglophone Canadians to insist that we don't speak "real" French in Quebec because it doesn't match their high school French books, never mind that they believe [correctly] that they speak "real" English even though they don't speak it as a Londoner would.)


Can this be answered "television" as well as "the news", or "a horror movie"?


Shouldn't be lights because of he/she/it? I wrote "lights" and it was wrong.


What is your whole sentence? Because it's a question so I assume something like "What is she lighting?" or "What does she light?" So no room for "lights". I tried "What does she turn on" and that also worked :)


if this also translates to 'what does she light up?' can the verb 'allume' be used to describe lighting a cigarette, cigar, joint, ect.? thanks.


Excusez-moi, je peux allumer un cigare ou une cigarette ? Bien sûr !


Why not: "What is that she's turning on?"


Because that needs an "it" between the "is" and the "that" and seems to me like something slightly antiquated or at least uncommon so Duo may not have anticipated that. We should probably report it.


How would i know if this is past tense vs present?


"Qu'est-ce qu'elle allume?" - Present

"Qu'est-ce qu'elle allumait?", "Qu'est-ce qu'elle a allumé?" ou "Qu'a-t-elle allumé?" - Past tense


What's wrong with 'switched on'? Duo says its wrong.


Never mind all this stuff about who is turning on whom, bleaching what etc, I can't imagine myself uttering the words, 'What does she turn on?'. Surely I would either be able to see what she was turning on or be unaware that she was turning on anything! Someone in Duolingo must have been struggling to think up sentences using the verb, 'allumer'. Anyway, you are forgiven, Duolingo. We love your free French lessons.


when people are mumblers or intoxicated (or tired, or many other reasons for not speaking clearly, speech impediments, for example), some parts of a sentence might be inaudible, so a question pertaining to the missing part of the puzzle might be asked. or, slang is a good example. on a snowy day when automobiles need to be turned on to warm up, a younger brother might say:

little bro: where's mom?

older bro: she's outside.

little bro: why?...

older bro: she turns on the whip to get it warmed up before school.

little bro: what does she turn on???.....


Ha ha, I should have known that my comment would spur someone on to prove me wrong! In this circumstance I certainly would say, 'What does she turn on? Since I had never heard of a whip on a car. In Scotland we don't get low enough temperatures often enough to require a special mechanism for warming up the engine. The wonder of Duolingo is that not only do we learn French we also learn about technology from around the world. Um6661138, I am also impressed by your expertise in so many languages. You are truly a polyglot.


yo, marie! i thought scotland got really cold... guess not. in cold parts of america vehicles are started and allowed to warm up so the engine can get warm which allows the heat from the engine to be used when a person turns on the heater in their car. if the engine isn't hot the air that gets blown through the vents isn't hot, and when cold air is blowing on u and ur already cold it's a real bummer. also, the engine running for a while heats up the oil in the engine allowing the engine to run properly and avoid wear-and-tear.

'whip' has been brought back and sort of redefined by hiphop culture. here's a link: https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Whip - - - - - - i would like to add to the link by saying that ANY car can be called a whip at this point bc the term can be applied as a joke. like, when u get a used car that's old and not all that fresh looking, and noticeable to anyone with eyes, ur friend might see it and say, "is that the new whip?" u know and they know it ain't expensive, so it's sort of a joke. so, any car is a whip at this point bc it's either a whip proper or it's not a whip which makes it sort of funny to call it a whip. plus, people get attached to cars, sometimes the worst looking and running cars even, bc a person goes through struggles in that car- u know how sentimental humans are- hahaha, or maybe it's all they can afford and so they're proud of whatever they got--- that's THEIR whip- don't matter how busted it looks or how busted it is- it's their whip! that's my take anyway. : )

thanks for the kind words. this site has changed my life for the better. i am doing something i only fantasized about for many years- learning and practicing many languages. : )


Can't see much difference between my translation "what is that she is lighting?" and one of DL's suggestions "What's it that she is lighting?", BUT in looking at them together now as I type I can see my 'that' serves a different role in the sentence than DL's 'that'. Given that (sorry, couldn't resist), the meaning is still nearly identical.


You mean who does she turn on? Am i right! ;)


you would say that, ashleigh..... hahaha :D


mega trolls bee creep'n this discussion... Les Trolls provoquent toujours les dégâts... oh, et ils puent... : )

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