"D'après ma femme, oui"

Translation:According to my wife, yes

December 26, 2012

This discussion is locked.


could you also say "selon ma femme, oui"?


Can we break down "D'après" in a way that makes this meaning easier to remember (like "pourquoi" = "pour" + "quoi")? "après" is used to mean "after", but does it have some more literal meaning that, when combined with the "d'", renders the meaning "according to"? Or should this just be thought of as a new word?


I'm afraid that "d'après" is less transparent than pourquoi - pour quoi. so, either you remember it as a new word, just to be able to recognize it when you meet it, or you learn "selon" which means the same thing, but it is not more transparent...


I'm not sure if this helps, but I know that sometimes in published academic articles if a picture is sourced from somewhere else that it is sometimes styled 'after <original source>' so that picture is as it is according to them. No idea if it that helps you, but it's keeping it in my head.


I like it - thank you!


I think of "according to" as being equivalent to "it follows from," in thos case. So if it "follows," then it is "after," in a sense. That's how my brain does it, anyway.


Until this exercise I was allowed to translate "ma femme" into "my woman" and now I was told this was wrong. Has duolingo been lenient with me until now or is it simply missing that translation here?


If most American women are like me, they will be a bit "miffed" if their husband called them "my woman" since the term "woman" is not at all equivalent to "wife" as it is in the French language. Your translation from French was a correct word for word translation, but gave a wrong meaning or impression to English speakers. If I were referred to in that way it would make me feel like I was his possession, or his property, not his partner. Therefore Duolingo correctly made the change.


Thank you for your reply, I am, and was, aware that some people probably understands "my woman" as an implied ownership. Though in my opinion the implied ownership comes with "me wife" as well. http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=velp

The main difference between saying "my woman" and "my wife" is that woman is a more genera term. E.g: Until the point that we had actually signed the papers to get married, my wife wasn't my wife, she was my woman/fiance/girlfriend ... etc. So I guess my question comes down to this, does "ma femme" literally mean "my wife" or are other, less formal, relationships included as well.

On a side-note; would you ever refer to your husband with "my man"? Would it imply that you own him?


If I were introducing my husband to my boss I would say, "my husband." If I were telling my girlfriends he was acting like a pig I might say "my man." I believe in french it is simply that "a woman" is ANY woman and "my woman" implies "MY wife." Sorry but I am not sure if I understand the opinion you were trying to express about "ma femme" - I believe I already explained the differences to Americans between french and English terms. Not sure if I answered your question.


Are you saying that "my husband" is formal while "my man" is used in a derogatory context?

"My woman" doesn't imply "my wife", it includes it with many other relationships one might have with a woman.

The question is ultimately a cultural one, do the french use "ma femme" when referring to women that are not their wives? If so "my woman" should be accepted. If they almost exclusively use it to refer to their wives, duolingo should never accept "my woman".

I was just surprised that it usually accepted the translation and all of a sudden didn't. I just prefer typing "woman" over "wife" because it is easier to type.


husband and wife = mari et femme

there is no specific word for "wife", so "ma femme" can be the woman you live with or the woman you married.

if you want to establish that she is your wife, you use "mon épouse" (masc: mon époux).

"mon homme" is relaxed and clearly states that your are not married.


This is what I found:

Du lat. class. maritus «id.» (lui-même dér. de mas, maris «mâle») qui a éliminé vir «homme», d'où «mari, époux».

Du latin classique femina « femelle », puis « femme, épouse » qui a concurrencé les latins mulier « femme » qui ne survit plus en France (en face de l'italien moglie et de l'espagnol mujer) que comme archaïque sous la forme moillier « épouse, femme » (qui disparaît des textes au 14e s.; 2 attestations aux 15e et 16e s.) et uxor « épouse » qui a donné le très rare oissour « épouse » (qui disparaît des textes dans la 1re moitié du 13e s.; qq. attest. aux 13e et 14e s. dans les remaniements épiques).

So I think that at no time has "marie" been used to mean "wife" because the etymologies are quite distinct between "mari" (male/married) and "femme" (female/wife).

However, from "(se)marier, mariage" you still have "un marié" (groom) and "une mariée" (bride), which are nouns derived from the verb's past participle and adjective. But those are valid on the wedding day only.


An etymological dictionary of AngloNorman usage by Ernest Weekly publish in 1925. Scholarship of that era did not always provide the references expected of modern academics. He was a French professor at Cambridge, though his work was mostly focused on the influence of the Anglo-Norman and Picard dialects on modern English. His work, though out of print, is useful when trying to translate texts from some of the older French dialects. I do not know if marie was once used to mean wife, as I have not personaly found examples. It is certainly the kind of story one finds in etymology. Though from an internal logic view it makes a certain amount of sense. Even if it was true, it would only have been for a limited dialect. My understanding, (and I do not claim to be a expert in anything except a limited period of English lit) is that regional differences in historic French existed to the point as to almost be independent languages. Contemporary French is primarily modeled on the Parisian dialect, although it has been influenced by others at times. I do know that Cretian des Troyes, Marie de France and many of the Vulgate authors use vocabulary not found in many modern French dictionaries. In any case it is only interesting as a possible reason why there is not a separate word for wife, as Marie is most certainly not used that way now.


Do you have any sources for this?


Thanks sitesurf for keeping me honest. This why I said "my understanding". I know plenty of etymological errors in English that get passed on because they sound reasonable, but are non- factual. I spent several hours last night( instead of preping for class) trying to find some confirmation, but failed. I think it is reasonable to assume Weekly got this one wrong, confusing mariee. It happens. I have also been unable to confirm " garcelle" as meaning girl, though I have found plenty of "gars" and " garce". Not that I have many Picard centric references. Sorry for perpetuating the error.


As a non-native speaker, I'm curious: what do you call a woman you live with and love, if you haven't signed any papers? At some age, "girlfriend" seems silly.


"ma femme" works (only "mon épouse" means you actually signed the papers), as well as "ma compagne".


If you were asking for English, the word that is commonly used is 'partner'.


Thank you for this. I can not begin to explain how sick and tired I am of having this conversation.

In addition, do you think that I own "my brother", "my hairdresser" or "my hero", because I can tell you that I certainly do not, yet nobody is trying to stamp these constructions out of the English language.


For that matter, "my man" is a common way for male friends to address each other, and it's used more generally as a verbal pat on the back.


It's very slangy but not quite so much as saying "OG".


Unless of course you refer to your husband as "your man"!!


What's the difference between d'après and selon?


They are interchangeable.


So does the d in d'apres have any separate meaning, besides changing the word?


Yes, d' is elided from preposition "de".


So what's wrong with "yes according to my wife" save that I missed a comma which Duolingo doesn't normally worry about?


You have changed the word order without any grammatical need.


Can one say "a l'avis de ma femme"?


Almost: "de l'avis de ma femme".

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