"Les chiens mangent du riz."

Translation:The dogs eat rice.

December 17, 2012

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Sounds the same as "Le chien mange du riz" am I right?


No, I don't think so. There's a clear distinction between "le" (pronounced [roughly] "luh") and "les" (pronounced "lay").


That's absolutely correct!


Here, put le-les together and you see the clear difference http://www.forvo.com/word/le_-_les/


Ah I see, as in "lə - leh"?


have a lingot good man


Le sounds like LU and les sounds like LE. The "s" is silent.


it does sound so very similar, but if you listen carefully it is different. however if you were speaking to someone french, they would be able to understand you


I thing the answer should be "The dogs eat rice" but duolingo thinks its supposed to be "The dogs eat some rice" where does the "some" come from? Les is the. Chiens is dogs. Mangent is eat. Du is of. Riz is rice. So where does the "some" come from?


"du" does not translate to "of".

In "du riz", "du" means "an unknown quantity of a mass thing", but in English, you don't need to translate "du". If you do, you will use "some".


I find myself losing most 'hearts' from simple lack of not hearing the difference between singular and plural. What's the best way to practice this?


Here there is only a difference between le and les. everything else sounds the same! listen to the difference here http://www.forvo.com/word/le_-_les/


Why would "les chiennes mangent du riz" be wrong?


chien = "shee-uhn", chienne = "shee-ehn"


Oh boy better strain those ears!! Thanks :)


Chienne is referring specifically to a FEMALE dog while chien is referring to a dog in general


First "The cats drink tea" and now "The dogs eat rice" Duolingo is a strange zoo


Shouldn't both 'The dogs eat rice' AND 'The dogs eat the rice' be accepted as correct?


One would be "du riz" and the other "le riz" (rice in general verse specific rice...)


At first I thought it was strange, too. But I remembered it was not so strange here in Japan :-)


Yep, sometimes I give my dog chicken and rice.


i just realized 19 in french is deez nutz


Actually, it's dix-neuf. Pronounced deez nerf


So... I'm guessing "des riz" would never be used or very rare. I suppose if someone was talking about several bags of rice they might? say "des riz" or do people always say "sacs du riz"?


You could find "des riz" if someone were dealing with several types of rice: long grain, black rice, round-grain rice, etc.

"Des sacs de riz" (bags of rice) would still treat "riz" as a mass, unless the sentence gives some detail about that rice, like "... des sacs du riz qui est ici..." = "... bags of the rice that it here...".

"Un sac de riz" is a "noun of noun" construction, where the second noun, after "de" and without an article, gives further information on the first noun's content, material, or quality.


Hello, I believe when we say in English 'sand' its still' sand' even if it is a beach full of sand! Isn't it? I guess the same applies for rice in french?


I feel my duolingo expirence is different than others. Like my version is easier? Is there a setting for that? Some of you are saying you had to "hear" what its saying, but for me it is spoken and writen, making it much easier to translate...


I put the dogs eat "the" rice not the dogs eat... rice why is it wrong?


The dogs eat THE rice = Les chiens mangent LE riz.


Any dog can eat rice if you give it rice. However, my problem is, I dont know when to use "de", "du" or "des" correctly. Can someone please explain?


A dog is eating "some" of a thing, but whether you use "de", "du" or "des" depends on the gender of the thing, and whether the thing is a singular or a plural! So, if the dog eats some cake (le gateau) you would say "du gateau" (because "de le" always contracts to "du"). If the dog eats some banana (la banane) you would say "de la banane". If the dog eats some rabbits (les lapins) you would say "des lapins" (because "de les" always contracts to "des"). Using rice as an example is not very helpful, because there are lots of grains of rice, so you might be tempted to use "des", but even in English we treat rice as singular. You would only use "des" if you were talking specifically about the grains of rice - "des grains".


Sorry, but the "lapins" example is not correct.

"Des" is the plural indefinite article that English does not have. It is distinct from the partitive articles "du/de la", which are used with uncountable nouns (therefore singular).

"Des" is the plural of "un" or "une" and it means "more than one".

Therefore, "le chien mange des lapins" (the dog eats/is eating rabbits) is the plural of "le chien mange un lapin" (the dog is eating/eats a/one rabbit).

Now, when the preposition "de" precedes the definite article "les", they contract to "des". But this "des" is not the plural indefinite article, but the plural contracted definite article:

  • Verbs constructed with the preposition "de": Je parle des (de+les) chiens = I am talking of/about the dogs
  • Possessive case constructed with the preposition "de": C'est le chien des (de+les) voisins = it is the neighbors' dog (lit. it is the dog of the neighbors).


very well explained


Why isn't it des riz the same way that it's les pâtes? They're both an 'uncountable' amount of something, so why isn't riz considered plural?


Once an uncertain amount of a food is mixed together then it is often treated as a singular item (it is called a "mass noun"). So in English we say "I eat a banana" or if we eat several at once, "I eat some bananas". However, if you have a bowlful of mashed bananas (they are in one mass) and you do not know how many bananas are in the bowl, or how many you have eaten by eating some of the contents of the bowl, you say "I eat some banana". It's the same in French - je mange une banane; je mange des bananes; je mange de la banane. Now, if you have to treat bananas as singular when you are not sure how many of them make up the mass of bananas in a bowlful, then you are even less likely to know how many grains of rice are in a bowl - so the rice is treated as a singular quantity as a "mass noun".


For whatever reason, "une pâte/des pâtes" is a countable noun in French, whereas "(un grain de riz) du riz" is mostly uncountable.


How can you tell the difference between chiens and chiennes?


If you hear the sound ENN at the end, this is "chienne".


"Chien" ends with a nasal sound and the N is not to be heard.



What is the difference between mangent, mange, mangeons, manges and mangez


check the conjugation of the verb ' manger'.


I'm finding it very difficult to distinguish between chat and chien.


Is there a way to tell if "mangent" (or any of it's alternative plurals/singulars) means "is eating" or just "eats"?


Sure: context, for the whole conjugation, except maybe "je mange", since you should know what you are doing/do.


So in this example "Les chiens mangent du riz" the answer was "The dogs eat rice." Would it not also be possible to interpret this as "The dogs are eating rice" (or is there something about the language used that means we couldn't interpret it as "are eating")?


Since you do not have any other elements of context, either "eat" or "are eating" is correct, and accepted.

With other information on a time frame, you will have to make a choice:

  • En ce moment, les chiens mangent -- are eating
  • Habituellement, les chiens mangent -- eat

When the French are willing to be explicit, they use a phrase "être en train de + infinitive" which tells you the action is in progress at the time they speak:

  • Les chiens sont en train de manger -- are eating


Why is it some rice instead of the rice?


"Du riz" means "some rice" as "an unknown amount of a mass thing", but it translates to "rice". You don't need to add "some" but if you use a wrong determiner, like "the", the system suggests a replacement of the wrong word with another more correct one, which is "some" in this instance.

"The rice" is the translation for "le riz", specific.


What would I write if I want to say "Dogs (in general) eat rice" ? " Les chiens mangent le riz", Is that correct ?


I believe that to be correct (hopefully someone else who knows more will confirm). But in summary, I read someone else's reply (in another thread) that was related to the concept of 'generality' and they said the French use the definitive article 'the' (le/la/les) when referring to something in general. So I imagine "Dogs eat rice" (as in 'all dogs generally') should be "Les chiens mangent du riz".

The awkward bit with French (as someone who's English) is trying to figure out whether that person is referencing dogs as in 'that group of dogs over there that I can see' vs 'dogs in general'


Yes I agree, I think you can figure it out only from context. But in case of generality,wouldn't you say "le riz" instead of "du riz" in your sentence "Les chiens mangent du riz", as I am talking about rice as "a type of food" (le riz) not "some amount of rice" (du riz) ? Hopfully someone will explain the correct way.


If all dogs ate rice, you would say "les chiens mangent du riz", where "les chiens" (dogs) are generalized but not "riz", because they only eat "some" each time.

To generalize "rice", you need something like "le riz est l'aliment préféré des chiens" (rice is dogs' favorite food), where "le riz" is a food category, "l'aliment" is specific and "des chiens" the contraction of "de+les chiens", ie "dogs" as a category.

Also, note that the latter sentence can be said about your own dogs just the same way in French, but with "rice is the dogs' favorite food".


Thanks for your explanation :) I was a little bit confused,but now it's clear.

[deactivated user]

    it should be "tthe dogs are eating the rice" because de le is du


    "The rice" is "le riz", a specific rice, whereas "rice" or "some rice" is "du riz".

    • 1784

    Je ne savais pas que les chiens adorent le riz!

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