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Un train peut en cacher un autre

This is an interesting expression. I understand its sense - "One train can hide another". Hence it appearing as a warning at railway crossings. As it happens I actually spotted it on a crossing in England - must be worried about the safety of visitors! :-)

Also, I noticed a film the other day called 'Une femme peut en cacher une autre' so I guess this a bit of wordplay on a well recognised phrase here?

It's the 'en' that I'm struggling with here:

One train can hide (from it? of it?) another? It seems to make more sense without the 'en'.

Or does cacher not work this way. I know that ''cacher qqch à qqn'' means to hide something from someone but this seems to indicate "cacher de"

Any thoughts?


February 9, 2015



En is used to replace train.

You could say Un train peut cacher un autre train (you absolutely need something after autre, it doesn't work on its own here). But to avoid the repetition, you use en as a pronoun.

Here is a more furnished explanation: http://forum.wordreference.com/showthread.php?t=2091404

February 9, 2015


Ah of course! Thanks Lazouave :-)

So, in bad franglais it is something like "a train can hide another of it"

It's like the DL sentence 'Je ne suis pas un oiseau mais j'amerais en être un'

February 9, 2015


"... j'aimerais..." Typo alert ;)

It seems quite similar indeed! Although I am no grammar specialist... Glad I could be of help! :)

February 9, 2015
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