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  5. "Il boit l'alcool, je bois l'…

"Il boit l'alcool, je bois l'eau."

Translation:He is drinking the alcohol; I am drinking the water.

December 16, 2012



In English, nobody says, I am drinking THE water. Or THE alcohol, for that matter. While I understand that Duolingo is trying to teach us about articles and all, the English translation with THE is total weird.


Yes, it is the weird.


Oh, I need help with the conjugations of the verbs :'(


Most of the times it follows a pattern: "Je" and "tu" - ends with a "s"; "Il and elle" - ends with a "t"; "nous" - ends with "ons"; "vous" - "ez"; "ils and elles" with "ent".

After getting used to the pattern you just have to memorize the verbs that are the exception.


This is perfect. The way you wrote this can actually turn into a little rhythm than helps me learn it.

"je and tu with s.

il and elle with t.

nous with ons.

vous with ez.

ils and elles with ent.



This is a bit simplistic. Depends whether the infinitive of the verb ends in 'ir, re or er' PLUS there are the irregular verbs that don't fit the regular category. 'Boire' is one of the irregular verbs. AND, the ending of the verb is going to depend upon the tense. Right now, in the beginning, it's easy as we're dealing with present tense. But the endings are going to change for the other tenses. Duo 'snuck' a future in on me, using 'mangera'. Best thing to do, for anyone, is go to a used book store (or use amazon's used book feature) and get a basic french text book. It will show the conjugations, etc. All clear. Gosh I've got five texts, I've a book that conjugates 501 verbs, just received the 'French in Action' dvd's. I can't see relying on Duolingo alone to learn the language.


Thanks for that, I can see what you mean. I will have to get memorizing, if that's a word.I appreciate your response.


wrong! boire is an irregular verb so yeah!!!



For boire specifically:

Je bois

Tu bois

il/elle boit

Nous buvons

Vous buvez

ils/elles boivent


If you put the cursor over the verb, it gives conjugations. I've used it since the begining lesson.


Wow, that's useful.


There are diff. endings for four diff. verb ending groups: -re, -ir, -er and then those called 'improper'. Quite useful to get a first year french text that goes over all of these and other conjugations (passe compose, imparfait, etc)


How am I supposed to hear the difference between 'il' and 'ils'?


In French, sometimes you pronounce the "s" at the end of a word, sometimes you don't ( http://french.about.com/library/pronunciation/bl-liaisons.htm ). Usually, there is no difference in pronunciation between "il" and "ils", and you need to tell them apart either by the verb conjugation (il boit versus ils boivent) or by the context.


Hi georgiad, I have the same problem, the translation is very difficult, sometimes you can hear the 's' pronounced, but, most times, it is very very hard to pick up.If anybody knows I would be interested too.


for bois it says wood, timber and woodcut


that is what I found through google tranlsate


You should probably use the verb boire


Yes bois, as a noun, is wood in french.

As for the verb, boire is the base verb, or whatever you call it, and "bois" is the 'je' conjugation of boire.


alcool can be translated either alcohol or drink, but "he drinks the drink, I drink the water" is marked wrong and "he drinks the alcohol, I drink the water" is suggested instead. Why?


I used the same answer. Someone care to explain?


Well french has different translations for just one word so don't be confused. In english when you ask someone if the person drinks alcohol you'll ask you drink? Such in this case when you are talking for someone and yourself you say he drinks or he drinks alcohol. So in this case alcool will be alcohol direct no confusions.


Yes, NOBODY says THE in front of alcohol or water !@!!!


Wouldn't accept "He drinks alcohol, I drink water." Which I consider better English.


Sometimes duolingo goes for a word for word translation and sometimes they don't. I guessed wrong the first time and put. He drinks alcohol, I drink water. Not sure which is a better way to learn or teach a language. When you translate word for word it might help you get into the syntax of a language. Or you might let the awkwardness get in the way. Maybe however it is better to learn comparing in your brain the best most currently spoken translation . I think the point is that you can't fit french into your english mold. And I'm not sure if word for word is better or not.


This is a comma splice. Two independent clauses should not be separated by a comma in English, and I assume French is the same. Should use a semicolon here (or a period, or an em-dash).


Why not just Alcohol and water ? Is it really imp. To use The Alcohol and The water????


When I type this, the comment comes back you have a typo, yet, it it exactly the same.


ll boit l'alcool, je bois l'eau


They're two separate sentences. Il boit l'alcool. Je bois l'eau


Yes, I agree, but that is how it appears. It is all one sentence. When I check my answer, it is exactly the same, but hey say. I have a typo. Cannot understand it.


Strange. I have typed the same (only with the dot in the end) and it is correct.


Thank you, it is actually a comma, but I will try a dot at the end and leave the comma out, that may be where I am going wrong. Thank you for your help. Also, thank you to everyone who gave me advice.


"alcool" is pronounced like "aee-col". Is this correct?


Sounds like that, but also try http://translate.google.com/#fr/en/alcool and click on the little speaker icon on the textbox on the left hand side. It sounds better to me, but then I'm not French!


When I noticed that the first "l" here is pronounced as "ee", this is exactly what I did: I went to Google Translator, and it pronounces the first "l" as a "l" ("al-col", instead of "aee-col"). It sounds better to me as well, but I'm also not French; this is why I asked for confirmation here.


I hear "al-col" with this program.


is itpossible to translate like this?

He's having a drink, I'm drinking the water


That's more colloquial. Other cultures may not refer to alcoholic beverages as simply, " a drink."


I don't know how it sounds on other people's computers, but to me it sounds like the sound is broken in the middle of the sentence, and it seems like there's an "et" to combine the two parts. Of course, that's what makes sense. Such sentences are not normally written with a semicolon in the middle.


I had a problem with this sentence too, but not the pronunciation, on my computer it does not sound like 'et just as the sentence is. It is difficult sometimes to hear what they are saying. Does slowing it down make a difference?


Slowing Duo down does make a difference but sometimes the slow version can mislead you.


Comparative clauses can be presented this way, without a conjunction.


How can I know when to use "bois de l'eau" and "bois l'eau"?


"bois de l'eau" = drink (some) water

"bois l'eau" = drink the water


I need to learn when to put de, de la, du, etc....never could understand when I should just put l'alcool, or de l'alcool, etc.


"l'alcool" means "the alcohol". "de l'alcool" means "some alcohol" or just plain "alcohol". There always has to be an article in French. They don't say "I drink alcohol" like in English and other languages. So you can't say, "Je bois alcool". You have to say "Je bois l'alcool" if you mean "I drink the alcohol" and "Je bois de l'alcool" if you mean "I drink some alcohol" or "I'm drinking alcohol" which means the same thing as "I'm drinking some alcohol" in English. If you want to say, "I like drinking alcohol" in French, you'd use " l'alcool".
It's the way the French talk.


That's what I wrote


Why is "He drinks alcohol, I drink water" wrong? I thought that alternate acceptance to "am drinking" was ok with DL


Why can it not be ' he drinks the alcohol, I drink the water?


I am drinking alcohol, I am drinking the alcohol, although correct is not often used in English


I put "he drinks alcohol, I drink water". I didn't think the definite article was necessary in English as we would tend not to say "the" in this context (would we?). Cross that it wasn't accepted but accept that if they wanted this answer they might have put "d'alcool" not "l'alcool" etc. But think it's a bit petty!


I totally agree with mamabear


an example of literal nit-picking


there is no need to use the progressive form unless you make clear that the action is going on at the moment. That is not clear here so there is no any reason to consider this as a mistake


he is drinking alcohol is more common


I agree with MamaBear228974. You don't say "the" before water and alcohol in English.

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