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it might be hard to tell the difference between pomme and pain at first (to me, pomme sounds like 'pom' and pain sounds like 'pahn', and they're distinct -- but i can see why it's hard to distinguish). however, you can also listen for the definite article to help you figure it out. pomme is feminine, so it's preceded by the definite article 'une', whereas pain is masculine and would be preceded by 'un'.
also, i've generally heard 'du pain' (literally, "some [of the] bread") instead of "un pain"
I focus on if she says une or un. If une I know it's pomme, if un, I know it's pain. From hearing my mom speak French, it seems easier to tell the two apart when a real person says it.
Is there no difference between "The woman eats an apple" and "The woman is eating an apple"? Would they both be expressed as "La femme mange une pomme"? I know both of the English sentences /mean/ the same thing, but they are a different way of saying it.
the woman eats an apple = la femme mange une pomme. the woman is eating an apple = la femme est en train de manger une pomme.
So does that mean that "La femme mange une pomme" cannot be translated to say "The woman is eating an apple"? Google Translate gave "La femme mange une pomme" as the translation, though I know it isn't always correct.
Both answers are ok, depending on the context. If I ask, what do eat the woman after lunch, I'll say la femme mange une pomme, but If I ask , what is the woman eating now? She is eating an apple / elle est en train de manger une pomme, it means the same thing but at a different moment.
When you ask "what is the woman eating now", you can answer "elle est en train de manger une pomme", or "elle mange une pomme", both are correct.
There's no progressive present in French, only one present (as in most languages): la femme mange la pomme. If you want to be very specific, you add "en train de.. .+ infinitive". La femme est en train de manger une pomme
It suggested to me that it "The wife is eating an apple" is also a correct solution; I don't understand this. Why is "wife" inferred when talking about a woman?
Depending on the context, "femme" means either "woman", "wife" or "lady". In this case, the best translation is "femme", but "wife" or "lady" can still be accepted.
Yes, "La femme mange une pomme" translates to "The woman is eating an apple", or "The woman eats an apple".
The 3rd person of verbs in "-er" (like "manger") ends with an "e" (here: "La femme mange...").
You can get help with the conjugation tables that come with the hints.
A noun is a word that represents a person, place, or thing, whether concrete (e.g., chair, dog) or abstract (idea, happiness). In French, all nouns have a gender - they are either masculine or feminine. The gender of some nouns makes sense (homme [man] is masculine, femme [woman] is feminine) but others don't: the words personne [person] and victime [victim] are always feminine, even when the person or victim is a man.
It is very important to learn a noun's gender along with the noun itself because articles, adjectives, some pronouns, and some verbs have to agree with nouns; that is, they change depending on the gender of the noun they modify.
There is no easy way to determine the gender of every noun, and you have to remember the gender with each word. But a number of patterns in suffixes and word endings are helpful: some tend to indicate masculine or feminine nouns (be careful with the exceptions).
Please have a look at this comment on noun genders in French: