"Non, sauf ma femme"

Translation:No, except my wife

December 20, 2012



No, only my wife should also be accepted here.

March 26, 2013

  • 1690

"Sauf" = except, not "only".

February 27, 2017


No, SAVE my wife!!! I dont even know what "save my wife" means but was marked incorrect because i didnt choose this as an answer. Where do they speak this way?

May 5, 2013


You may not know but not every poster on this thread comes from the same example. From what you write I assume you are referring to multiple choice rather than the example at the top of this page. If no, save my wife was given as one of the required options then they are referring to its use as a preposition.

Save, in English, as a preposition, is used to refer to keeping, excluding, retaining, setting aside. You save your money not because you think it needs rescuing but because you want to keep it. No one thinks you are about to run into a burning building to pull out your money but rather that you are going to set some aside from the money that you normally process.

If you read serious literature, especially British, you will come across phrases where save is used to mean except. eg: all the windows are closed, save the one in the bedroom.

May 6, 2013


They put but as a correct translation of sauf, but when you use it they tell you its wrong...what gives?

September 16, 2013


In this case it doesn't work. "No, but my wife" just doesn't work in the way it's intended to. It could mean "but" in a sentence like the following: "Tout le monde sauf Paul viennent," which means "Everyone but Paul is coming."

March 12, 2015


what is the difference between 'sinon' and 'sauf' ?

March 2, 2014



Sinon = otherwise..... or else

sauf = except..... save

After the Norman conquest of England, the French words sauver (to save/rescue/keep/store) and sauf (save/except) were both incorporated into the English language. Although they mean quite different things, both in English and French, the English speakers chose to pronounce them exactly the same. (save)

Most Americans are uncomfortable and unfamiliar with using save as except even though the foundational documents of the English language do use it that way. You should consider it a possibly misleading translation to use save for sauf even though it would be correct.

Some English speakers even seem to be mildly offended if sauf/save is used that way. You can verify the difficulty with using save for sauf by looking at some of the other comments on this page

March 2, 2014


Can you also say "except FOR my wife"?

October 4, 2016

  • 1690


June 21, 2017


couldn't it also be my woman ? does the "ma" make it wife ? but femme alone just means woman ? cos I keep missing this and I'm confused lol

December 20, 2012


Saying "my woman" in English, while not grammatically incorrect, wouldn't be very well received as it's a bit misogynistic because it sounds like you think you own her.

December 30, 2012

  • 1690

In general, when a possessive term is used this way, it will be understood as a familial connection. Duolingo's convention, therefore, is "ma femme" = my wife, "ma fille" = my daughter.

February 27, 2017


Technically yes, but that phrase is rarely used in English and has a different meaning and tone (it usually sounds a bit rude, or at least jokingly rude, and it doesn't imply marriage). Ma femme 99.9% of the time would be translated as 'my wife'. For example men I know who live with their girlfriend never ever say 'ma femme' and if you asked them about their 'femme' they might say that actually they're not married.

January 2, 2018


why does the male speaker make it sound like "non, sofa ma femme"?

November 20, 2015


He is taking great care to enunciate clearly.

November 26, 2015


not doing a good job

November 20, 2017

  • 1690

The accent is one which is typical of the southwest part of France. It is normal. Don't expect that everything is going to be exactly pristine when it comes to the way people anywhere pronounce words. To many people, the accent represented by the male voice is more clearly enunciated than the female voice. Ideally, there should be ten different voices so learners are not tied to one voice.

November 20, 2017


How do you know if it's "wife" or "woman". to me they seem like they could both fit.

February 8, 2016


As a guide if Femme is preceded by a possessive it translates to Wife.

February 8, 2016


if Fille is preceded by a possessive it translates to Daughter

November 8, 2016


What about "aside from my wife"?

October 13, 2017


Nope Dfreedman. Aside from my wife=A part ma femme. Also "aside from my wife" is very awkward English.

October 14, 2017


So the word excluding is not acceptable?

January 18, 2018


‘No, save my wife’ is good English and ought to be taken as an answer. Indeed, it originates from the very same French word that is being translated!

February 12, 2018


"no, but for my wife" not accepted 16 Feb 2018. "except" is not a literal translation, which opens the field for other equivalent words in common use. I think "but for" should be accepted.

February 16, 2018


Well Jeffrey, hack into Duo and go sort. We can't. Hey and "should" is as big a word as "If". Do you get my drift?

February 16, 2018


"No, save for my wife", is also grammatically correct.

June 20, 2018


Came into discussion trying to figure what the sentence meant, conceiving no usage for it. Ok, asked does this guy hang with girls? "Not but his wife""not save his wife""not unless his wife""not without his wife" Never gonna answer "no, except his wife," because you better not pause incase the wife is listening, and we English cant sum up the sentence with the hand gestures that keep the French much safer from each other.

September 18, 2018


WOW!!! Lots of deleted comments....why is that?

December 24, 2018


except=save in literate English

February 6, 2019


except my woman. How is that incorrect?

February 9, 2019


Why is "No, apart from my wife" wrong? It is acceptable English and it was one of the options under "sauf".

March 18, 2019
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