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  5. "Est-elle chez elle ?"

"Est-elle chez elle ?"

Translation:Is she in her house?

December 29, 2012



Duolingo should offer a tip to translate "chez elle" to "her home", as a verbal phrase.


That would only work in contexts where the subject is also "elle". If you had "Les hommes sont chez elle," for example, it would mean "The men are at her house." We only know it means "at home" because the subject is also "elle" - She is at her (own) house.


She could also live in an apartment, and then you would again say "her home" or perhaps better is "her place", because there are contexts in which we are talking about someone's store or restaurant.


I despised this question


Pronunciation: "s" is uttered."eSt-el". It is very disturbing.


Yes, his is a big mistake, I am french and this "s" is very very bad pronunciation


Thanks that is good to know so i dont get confused and start saying it like this!


I also am a first generation American with a French family in Normandie. French is one of my two native languages and this is horrific and unacceptable pronunciation. "Est-elle" should be pronounced "Ey-tell" NOT "Essssstelle." Where does Duo get these people?? And through this course, this is only one of many examples of horrible French pronunciation from this woman. My dog can pronounce French better than her.


So your dog is bilingual too, great!

The woman's voice sound base used has always missed the simple lexeme "est" (3rd person singular, verb "être" in present).

Therefore, from day 1, the TTS has used her recording of "et" (wrong sound, since the sound is é and not è), or her recording of the cardinal point "eSt" (east).

I remember my first reporting this when I was doing my French tree, mid-2012. So what's new? There is a man's voice who says it properly. Bad luck if you hear the original woman's audio.


Yes, it should be (et-el) for pronunciation. Did you report it? Keep in mind that the pronunciation is very difficult to fix the programming for. So, I am not sure how long this will stay like this.


This same problem with "est-elle" appears in a lot of places on Duolingo. As far as I know, the only reason to pronounce the "s" in "est" is when you mean "east" rather than "is." If you type "Qui est à l’est" into Google Translate, you can click the audio button and immediately hear the difference between the two ways of pronouncing "est."


The second "elle" should be pronounced "el", not "elleh". I'm not sure what's going on with the voiceover.


The voice is wrong in the first part: she says "ess-t-elle cheh-z-elle". She should sound: "eh-T-elle cheh-z-elle".


I don't think your comment was exactly addressed, but I believe you are right about the second "elle" being mispronounced.


Surely "chez elle" can be translated as "at hers"? I know it's colloquial, but to penalise is a little harsh.


I believe that Duolingo has a limit to the number of translations that it can accept.


Well if so, that is ridiculous; isn't "at hers" quite an obvious translation?


You need to consider the context. I would not consider "She is at hers" to be a valid sentence in English. (you need to indicate what 'her' is in reference to, eg "She is at her home.", or "She is at her place."

I'm curious as to where such an odd construction would be considered correct.


I wouldnt consider it obvious. Out of context, "She is at hers" doesnt mean anything to me. It would make sense as something like "He is at his house, and she is at hers."

More importantly, this has the word "house" in it, and it isnt some unusual phrase that youd never hear in English. "She is at hers" would be a different sentence, without the word "chez."


Perhaps the translation ''at hers'' should also be amended as an acceptable colloquial translation.


That's what I put too. Didn't realise the "elle" at the end probably refers to the same person.


where is the word for "home" here?


"at home" = "chez elle"


If it was a guy would you say "chez il"? Thanks :)


No, "chez lui", because "il" is used exclusively when "he" is a single subject of the verb.

  • il est chez lui

  • lui et elle sont chez eux

note that "elle" remains "elle" as single or multiple subject and after a preposition.


Thanks :D I would never be able to understand French without you -


In your second example, wouldn't it be "il et elle sont chez eux"? Because they're the subject?


When 2 or more pronouns are subjects of the same verb, you have to use their stressed form:

  • je = moi
  • tu = toi
  • il = lui
  • elle = elle (no change)
  • on = (no stressed pronoun)
  • nous = nous (no change)
  • vous = vous (no change
  • ils = eux
  • elles = elles (no change)


@Sitesurf: Up to this level, does this question have the similar meaning with "Is she there"?


Not in the case where you are on the phone or on her door step, which would be "est-elle là ?" or "est-elle à la maison ?"

The reason is that if you ask "est-elle chez elle ?", it implies that the person you ask the question to is elsewhere.


chez elle = at her place


I wrote --is she in? and it was ok


I took this to mean "Is it her house?" which I feel is appropriate, but that might be better translated as "Est-elle sa maison ?"



"Chez" is a preposition. It is not about the house. It is about where she is.

"at her house", "at her home", "at home".

So "chez" is a special case of "at".

It is interesting because there is no direct English equivalent.


Never knew to think of chez that way, thanks for that!

  • 1869

Sorry if someone has already asked this, but could this also be translated as "she is at her house," or only as "in her house"? In English we would always say "at" her house, not "in." As in "at home" or "at her house."



Strictly speaking "at home", "at her place", and "at her house" are better translations than "in her house".


shouldn't this be acceptable: "Is it at her house?" - so long as 'elle' refers to a feminine object.


Theoretically, you are not wrong, but that would really be confusing in conversation.


This could not only mean "Is she at home?" but also "Is she at her place?", meaning that girl 1 is at girl 2's place.


I said "Is she at her house? and it was marked correct, but with the alternate translation of is she at home.... that's a large difference in meaning between the same sentence.


You think so? It is not in common English usage. Do you suggest that her house is not her home? I dont criticise , I just ask.


The reason that "at home" works better than "at her house" is that not everyone lives in a house. Maybe her home is e.g a boat ;)


Yyupp, Patrick... Mine is! You headline me mais non?


Yes exactly so "chez JJ" translates as "JJ's place" or "JJ's home" but would be silly to translate it as "JJ's house".

"JJ, est-il chez JJ" best translates as is "is JJ home" but would we translate it as "is JJ at his house?


Of course not. JJ doesn't have a house.. JJ is at JJ's place/home/domicile/boat/tent/urt et al. Est il chez il? Oui JJ chez il.


Yes exactly so maybe the more general "home" or "place" is the better translation.


Yes. Doesn't negate other possibilities though, does it? As suggested in this and further discussion threads. Best to hang in there with your general translations though, Patrick, agreed.


True - it doesn't negate other translations.


Yes, I do. "Where is you sister? Is she at home?" "No, she's at her house." "Whose house?" "Katy's."


That's right, but in my mind if you say that 'he is at his house' or 'she is at her house' then that implies that the agent (in this case the person that owns/inhabits the house) owns the house because it's in the same sentence.


Why is "Does she stay at home?" wrong?


That would be "Est-ce qu'elle RESTE chez elle?"


I read the comments, but could not find the answer to this one;

If chez elle means in the house of the same person...

How would you aks in French if a girl is in the house of another friends house, so not in her own house. In English: Is she in her (someone elses) house?



The same problem arises in English and the problem is solved in the same way.

If we say "Is she in her house" we would assume we are referring to her own house unless we specify otherwise - such as putting in brackets - someone elses.

Is Marie in her house = is Marie in her own house

Is Marie in Claudette's house = Is Marie in the house of Claudette.

So in French "est-elle chez Claudette"


est-ce qu`elle est chez elle ? We could say it like this as well :) Right ?


Yes of course but maybe the checker did not recognize your weird apostrophe: [qu`elle] vs qu'elle


Thank you, i've got the translating exercise, so i was just wondering if it could be said the other way, because so far learning french for me was all about those exceptions :D But as the time flows i'm getting along with it, partially also because of you and your explanations in almost any excersize, thank you once again :)


Can't "Est-elle chez elles?" be right? In the sense: Is she at their home?


I don't think so, because being "at home" is about being in one's own house.


Also, would it not be "chez eux" for multiple female residents?


no, for multiple female residents: "sont-elles chez elles?" and for males: "sont-ils chez eux ?"


Isn't it possible in a certain context? talking about one's daughter Jeanne and her friends Gabi and Marie, is it possible to say "ou est elle? est-elle chez elles"?


it is possible but it would be so confusing that we would probably not say it and replace at least "elles" by something more precise (chez ses amies)


Merci, Sitesurf. I have appreciate your answers not to just this comment, but to comments in other exercises.


Why do you say "Est-elle chez elle" and not "Est-elle chez maison?"


Because that's they way the language is. Chez is a preposition that does not have an English equivalent, meaning someone's else or a certain location. Similarly, you could say "Je rentre chez moi" (I'm going home) or "Je vais chez Paul" (I'm going to Paul's place or home).


Doesn't chez mean "at the house of"?


it sounds like che or she not chez


So when it says "Is she in?" is an acceptable translation, does that just mean in the context of being at home, or for other contexts? E.g. Is she in the car?


Chez refers to a home only. Est-elle chez elle ? can only ever mean is she in, in the sense of is she at her home. It's a hard one to explain since there is no equivalent in English.

I don't know if this will help but, think of the chez in the names of many French restaurants named Chez [stereotypical French name] (there are a lot near me named chez [French name], eg, Chez Marie, Chez Pierre, Chez Madeleine, etc.) If Chez Madeleine was an American food restaurant, it would be called Madeleine's place. Therefore you can associate chez with place or home. I hope that helps, or makes sense at all...

Good luck.


This is excellent EmilijaLouise. The wonderful sitesurf sorts out the academics irrefutably but for a blind dog like me sniffing his way along the pavement, this really works. You have given me "Chez" without any recourse to grammar that I also dont understand yet. (I am learning it though, from sitesurf.) Thank you mate, do have a lingot and an upvote. Bless.


When did "elle" become "house"?


"chez" is a preposition that has no direct translation in English but which means "at someone's house". So, to define whose house you are talking about, you just add the (stressed) pronoun:

chez moi, chez toi, chez lui, chez elle, chez nous, chez vous, chez eux, chez elles.


I always thought that "chez" + stressed pronoun was the equivalent of someone's "home". I think of house as the building. Am I incorrect in this thinking? Thanks.


"chez" does not have a translation but this little word alone means "at the place/office of"

  • je vais chez le boulanger/chez le médecin/chez toi/chez eux... = I am going to the baker's/doctor's/your place/their place


This is new to me. Thank you for replying, Sitesurf.


Could this be translated as "Is it at her house?" with the "elle" in "Est-elle" referring to some object with a feminine grammatical gender (i.e., la chatte, l'orange, etc.)?


Wouldn't at home be a la maison? I was taught this should be translated: "Is she at her place?"


Does (elle)the second one refers to home ? How should I know !!!? If (maison) was another masculine word ,,, we shall use (Il)????


Chez is a preposition that does not exist in English. Chez moi means "at home" or "at my place", "chez toi, chez lui, chez elle, chez nous, chez vous, chez eux, chez elles" all mean at the person's place.

Note that "chez" can be static or in movement: je rentre chez moi (I come back home), il vient chez moi (he is coming to my place)...


Another excellent post from our sitesurf. I dont know how to save these posts so that I can refer to them later so I write them down on paper which is laborious but so worth it. I have 14 A4 wallets full of the posts of sitesurf, northernguy, jrikhal, thankwee, Wunel and others. These folk Make this site..... it is helpless without them. Thank you all.


Posting for grateful learners like you is extremely rewarding and worth the effort. :-)


What if I'm at her workplace, at the front desk for example, and I'm asking if she's in her room/office? Do I need to use "bureau", or can I ask if she is "chez elle"? (In which case it does not mean her home)


"Chez elle" really means in her house/flat. Otherwise, in your scenario, you will have to say "dans son bureau" (in her office), or "au bureau" (at the office).


Thanks a lot, have a gem for being one for us. :)


can anyone explain to me why there is a second "elle" at the end?


"chez" is a preposition which does not have a direct translation.

it means "at someone's place/house/office...".

So the "someone" part of the meaning has to be translated to a stressed pronoun:

chez moi, chez toi, chez lui (masc), chez elle, chez nous, chez vous, chez eux (masc), chez elles.


Excuse my ignorance but why is "elle" repeated at the end of the sentence?


The second "elle" defines who's home she is at. (hers)


Fun fact: 'est' (is) and 'est' (East) are called homographs.

I guess this explains the problem with the pronunciation here.


The pronunciation of this question is completely wrong. It would be better if they just delete the question if they cannot fix it.


The question does not appear in the usual "type what you hear" exercise. This is all we can do to avoid any misunderstanding. I also assume that sometimes you can get the man's voice alternatively.


"in her house" = "inside her house" (dans sa maison)
"at her house" = "at home" (chez elle)

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