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https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RRaskolnikov

Error for "il y a"

Duolingo seems to give the direct translation of "il y a" as "ago" for some reason when according to one of its' lesson descriptions it means "there is". This is really puzzling.

http://imgur.com/inrI5L5

June 16, 2015

5 Comments

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https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

The issue is that flashcards are mechanically produced from the hints (French hints for English words on the Fr for En course).

Hints can be one word, like "word" = "mot".
Hints can also regroup words or phrases, like "ago" = "il y a"

Flashcards pick up the most frequent translation for any word.

In this case, there is no other way to translate "ago" to French than using "il y a", so it is no surprise that "il y a" should match "ago" in flashcards, since it is a single hint.

However, the other way around, the most frequent hints for "il y a" are "there is/there are". We are working on a way to "correct" flashcards as well as other parts of the courses, but we are not there yet. Thank you for your patience.

June 16, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/managerx

"il y a" means also "ago"

Example: "Il a parlé il y a 5 minutes." = "He spoke five minutes AGO."

MORE: http://french.about.com/od/grammar/a/depuisilya.htm

June 16, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/nicolas_jk

As a word card it makes sense that it's the phrase. Otherwise it would be more of a grammar exercise.

June 16, 2015

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mariana739653

I have been "wrong" for answering that "il y a" means "this". How is :"this is" and "there is" differentiated ?

January 19, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sitesurf

If you really need to differentiate "this is" from "that is", you can use:

  • ceci est = this is
  • cela est (hardly ever used because of the sound of it) = that is
  • ça, c'est (spoken French) = that is
January 19, 2018
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