"Quel grand garçon il est !"

Translation:What a tall boy he is!

December 26, 2012



lots of words mean "what" in french... great.

April 5, 2013


im experiencing a great amount of confusion over this. deciding which word to use for 'what' in different contexts is proving to be very difficult.

September 15, 2013


The way I see it, there's the 'what' you mean when you are referring to a concrete noun (what is that), or if you mean it as a kind of exclamation, like "what a beautiful day" or "what big eyes you have". I'm going to imagine there's another word for 'how' in French as well, so you can exclaim stuff like "how awesome" or "how quick", one for nouns and another for adjectives and adverbs... I think.

March 30, 2014


I feel your pain.

November 27, 2014


I can't hear the est....

January 8, 2013


When speaking formal French, when a one syllable word is used at the end of a sentence and the is another one syllable word before it,the two words will sort of be blended together, it says the "est" part but it sounds like eeleh, it blended the words together sounding just the "e" part of the sentence.

March 31, 2014


Est-il is strictly for questions?

September 2, 2014


It's true! In fast version there is no est on the end... Only if you play slow version you can hear that...

February 9, 2014


I hear it fine (Feb 9, 2014) in the fast version.

February 9, 2014


In my version today (10th Feb) it still misses est at the end, just like the voice was cut or sth after she say il...

February 10, 2014


I'm listening to it now (Feb 14th, 2014) and I can hear it on the regular version. She pronounces it like a one word: ee-leh as there is clearly another sound after the word "il".

February 14, 2014


It s feb 16 th and still no est after il. Haha dafug?

February 16, 2014


I hear smth like ilê

May 24, 2014


If the literal translation is "what A tall boy" shouldn't the French translation state "Quel UN grand garcon?"

January 1, 2013


If the context is used as "What a-something something," then the article is already implied and therefore not needed.

"Quelle belle fleur!" Means "What a beautiful flower!" without the need of an article.

July 31, 2013


Quel is a determiner just as articles are determiners. You don't need more than one determiner. http://french.about.com/od/grammar/a/determiners.htm

January 13, 2014


quel and quoi are both "what" (in what a tall boy he is). How do you know when to use, or not to use, quel?

September 5, 2013


I was going to try to answer your question until I realized I was just confusing myself and wound up finding this link, which gives a good explanation of all the different forms of "what" and when to use them:


October 29, 2013


Merci, this is really helpful!

March 8, 2014


Slightly disappointed it wouldn't let me remark upon the tall waiter

April 15, 2014


The las word "est" is missing

December 26, 2012


Looks like they fixed it

December 27, 2012


I can hear it in the slow version, but not the normal one. Strange.

October 27, 2013


Same here. The question is, if this is correct when speaking French fast.

November 17, 2013


Imo the est should be heard, at least a bit.

November 18, 2013


Translated this as 'which big boy is he' and have now checked with google translate and my answer is correct. Why hasn't it been accepted here?

February 26, 2013


Because you shouldn't rely on Google Translate for correct translations.

March 17, 2013


Sorry are you saying my answer is not an acceptable translation. If so why not?

March 17, 2013


It's not acceptable because it's not correct English. I think maybe you misunderstood the French sentence - you're not asking which of the boys he is, you're expressing admiration/surprise at how tall/big he is.

I was also saying that checking with Google Translate is useless, because the translations it gives are often incorrect or nonsensical. Because it's a machine and machines haven't learned how to translate correctly yet.

March 17, 2013


Actually my answer is correct English it may not be the correct translation of the sentence but that is why I made my comment. Maybe rather than being rude and arrogant you could explain how I would ask. ' Which big boy is he in French?' I understand perfectly that google isn't an exact science for translation but it can be very useful. Also humans are also not free from error when it comes to translation as can be seen when you read some of the translations of the documents on this site.

March 17, 2013


It's not correct English as it is. Maybe if you added a question mark and turned it into a question.

But this exercise is not asking you to write a question. They don't want you to ask which big boy he is. It doesn't matter if your answer is grammatically correct or not, it won't be the right answer because it's not a translation of the phrase "Quel grand garçon il est !"

I was never rude. You are being defensive.

March 17, 2013


To say "Which big boy is he" you would say: "Quel grand garçon il est?". However, in the context of this question, "Quel" means "What". Hope that helps.

February 2, 2015



I was going to translate it as you did. I decided not to because which big boy is he is clearly a question.

There is nothing in the Duo example that leads to it being a question. In fact the punctuation indicates otherwise.

Since Duo generally wants me to translate the French as directly as possible rather than inject my own English preference I chose to to do the minimal amount of change.

By adding an "a" to the sentence I arrived at

What a tall boy he is! That seems to much more in keeping with the original French and is a lot different than Which big boy is he?

April 13, 2013



they explain it with some useful examples here :)

December 3, 2013


Where is the un??

January 1, 2013


Quel is a determiner just as articles are determiners. You don't need more than one determiner for a given noun. http://french.about.com/od/grammar/a/determiners.htm

January 13, 2014


thanx for explanation why it does not need "un".

June 12, 2014


Yes, where is "un" I think my answer is correct

January 2, 2013


There's no "un" needed in the sentence, the article referring to the subject is already there ("il"); French sentence structure doesn't work the same than English, this particular example is similar to Spanish. You tried to do a word-by-word translation which most of the times results being an inaccurate translation. I hope it helped.

June 13, 2013


No one has satisfactorily answered WHY one doesn't need the article 'un' stating 'quel un grand garcon il est.

March 22, 2013


Quel is a determiner just as articles are determiners. You don't need more than one determiner for a given noun. http://french.about.com/od/grammar/a/determiners.htm

January 13, 2014


Speaking of correct English, you can in fact say 'what a tall boy' and leave out the 'he is' as it is understood in the context. Never mind, I just get frustrated with losing hearts, which proves the efficacy of Duolingo as a learning tool

March 23, 2013


Sooo trying to wrap my head around this, the quel is playing the role of adjective because in french, I understand, nouns without adjectives are abhorrent. In english 'what' seems to be always followed by 'a'+noun ?
To me, dropping the 'a' in What a tall boy he is still sounds ok.

March 25, 2013


That's right. Here quel is an exclamative adjective meaning "what a + noun". Exclamative adjectives, just like articles, are a type of adjectif déterminant, i.e. a determiner adjective. You only ever need one determiner per noun. To include the article would make two.

January 13, 2014


The sound on the spoken example was not only terrible but misleading.

It's completely different from the sound on this printed example.

April 13, 2013


Very true. Even knowing what the correct answer is, it sounds nothing like "grand"

June 9, 2013


"Grand" sounds fine to me. The nd only gives the word a faintly nasal sound.

October 27, 2013


This kind of surprised me as it sounds an ugly sentence; I don't think I've heard a native french person put the verb at the end of the sentence (I live here), but then I haven't been listening for it. I would have been inclined to use 'comme' as in 'Comme il est grand, le garçon' to express the same meaning. Is this correct?

August 8, 2013


"What a tall boy is he!" This is not acceptable?

October 1, 2013


That's a bit "poetic" English.

January 13, 2014


"How big a boy he is!" should be included. It also seems the most literal translation that still makes conversational sense.

November 26, 2013


That would be really odd English, imo.

January 13, 2014


Si elle parlerait plus clairement, cela serait grand!!

January 4, 2014


Why is this sentence in the "questions" category?

January 28, 2014


Probably from the perspective of "while we're on the topic of quel..."

January 28, 2014


You might be right, it's a good way to understand that "quel" doesn't always mean that the sentence is a question, it makes sense.

January 29, 2014


The first time this phrase came up a week or so ago, I translated it to "Such a tall boy he is!" which is a very common phrase in American English.

February 13, 2014


this is what grandmas say.

May 1, 2014


where is the article "un" in front of "grand"?

June 29, 2014


Quel is already a determiner and a noun only needs one.

June 29, 2014


I thought quel means which ????

June 23, 2014


It means "what" and "which" in their adjective sense. It's also used in interjections like this one of admiration of indignation to mean "What a...(countable singular noun)!" or "What (uncountable noun/plural)!"

June 23, 2014


Quel sounds like it has two sylables, quel es

June 30, 2014


I'm still confused with c'est-ce que/quoi/que/est-ce que...

July 16, 2014


Hi Duolingo please review the pronounciation of the word "grand" in this exercise it sounds as if it starts with a "B".

July 16, 2014


Hello umaka08, thought you might like to know that to report problems you see in Duolingo audio tracks, translations, etc., you need to use the "Report problem" button that appears after you answer a question. Don't use the comment section if you want to talk to the people that work for Duolingo.

July 19, 2014


Merci pour le tuyau

August 4, 2014


why isnt the article un here.

August 11, 2014


See my answer to abcdefghost.

August 13, 2014


Why there s no "un" in the given sentence but answer has "a" in it?

August 12, 2014


A noun only needs one determiner (adjectif déterminant). Articles are one kind and exclamative adjectives like "quel" are another. When "quel" immediately precedes a noun, expressing a strong sentiment, it means "what a..."

August 12, 2014


Thank you.

August 13, 2014


Duo told me the answer was "he is such a big boy". Which word here means such? Btw i answered "he is a big boy" and was incorrect.

January 21, 2015


I'd have sworn the second word was voulons. that's exactly how it sounded. the audio isn't all that clear.

February 1, 2015


In English this would be "Isn't he a tall boy?"

February 13, 2015


Is "He is a large boy" too far off of a translation?

August 23, 2013


Is grand really supposed to sound like two syllables? Or am I just hearing things...? :|

December 10, 2013


I referred to him as a tall fellow. This is surely an acceptable translation.

January 9, 2014


Yeah, i couldnt understand it clearly. Some words still sounded unintelligable even on the slow setting :/

February 3, 2014


What a confused phrase is that!?

March 13, 2014


Does this even classify as a sentence?

January 25, 2014
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