"What does that represent?"

Translation:Ça représente quoi ?

December 29, 2012



Why "cela"?

May 19, 2013


"cela" is the correct, formal translation of "that", when "ceci" means "this".

May 19, 2013


So if cela and ceci are the formal translation, how about "Ça" and "ce/cet etc"?

February 22, 2014


ceci = demonstrative pronoun (this): ceci est un chien (this is a dog)

cela = demonstrative pronoun (that): cela me convient (that suits me)

ça = shortened version of "cela" = demonstrative pronoun (that): ça va ? (are you doing fine?)

ce, cet, cette, ces = demonstrative adjectives:

  • ce chien = masculine singular

  • cet arbre /cet homme = masculine singular, in front of a vowel or a non aspirate H

  • cette fille = feminine singular

  • ces chiens, ces arbres, ces hommes, ces filles = plural

February 23, 2014



Didn't know about ça being a contraction of cela.

cela is also a contraction of ce + là (this there)

ceci is a contraction of ce + ici (this here)

Apparently cela often replaces ceci in actual use. So presumably Ça is used for "ce ici" too?

What about "ces là" and "ces ici" (Those there) and (those here), do they have their own contractions? Also "cette là" and "cette ici"?

June 10, 2014

  • "ça" often replaces cela and ceci as well in speech.

  • "j'aime ces fleurs-ci mais je préfère celles-là": this is a typical comparative statement where the English would use "this/these" and "that/those".

  • "cette fille-là" or "ces gens-là" can mean you are simply pointing to specific individuals, but it can also mean that your judgement on them is rather negative (if your tone is sarcastic).

  • "ces jours-ci" means "nowadays"

  • "voici" and "voilà" literally mean "see here" and "see there", respectively. In English: "here is/are".

June 11, 2014


Que représente Ça? ... does this not work?

February 4, 2015


I am not sure if anyone tries to explain it below (in which case I might not understand your situation), but I still don't understand why this is not an option. Anyone?

June 28, 2016


It is an option now.

May 17, 2018


why can't I say "qu'est-ce que ça signifie?"

December 29, 2012


No, that is not the intended meaning. "ça représente quoi ?" could refer to a painting, for example. The question is about the object displayed, not is meaning.

December 30, 2012


You could probably say ""qu'est-ce que ça représente?", though. But sitesurf is right, "représente" has to do with appearance, not meaning. Don't confuse English synonyms with French words!

January 6, 2013


Why not Que represente ca?

March 7, 2014


Why can't I say "Quoi ça représente?"

September 20, 2014


Not french. You can't begin a question whith quoi, you would say "cela représente quoi ?" It's the same meaning. There are few exception, "quoi faire ?" Or "quoi prendre ?" With infinitif verb you can use quoi on the first position. I thing that correspond to "what to do ?" and "what to take ?", this is English sentence ?

September 20, 2014


Why not "Que représente cela ?" ?

August 30, 2014


it works now 29/1/2015

January 29, 2015


Why "Qu'est-ce qu'il représente ? " is wrong

September 9, 2014


I just made the same mistake. I believe it's because "il" is more "it", while we want the demonstrative here of "that". Subtle, but important.

November 23, 2014


I think it should be right, but only if you were specifically talking about an object to begin with. Just looking at the sentence, you couldn't tell if it was "it" or "him".

February 5, 2015


What does he(it) represent ? . The best translate is "Qu'est que ça représente"

September 10, 2014
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