"C'est un garçon bien."
Translation:He is a decent boy.
121 CommentsThis discussion is locked.
BANGS isn't really a rule. It is a tool to simplify the application of a set of rules.
The rule is: subjective, figurative adjectives go in front, objective literal adjectives go after. Since most adjectives that fall under BANGS are subjective/figurative the tool works most of the time.
The subjective/figurative vs. objective/literal distinction is intended to get at the function of adjectives in front of nouns referring to inherent qualities whereas adjectives that go after the noun classify it some way.
Do you think he is a good boy because it is his inherent nature to be good (subjective) or because he acts in a good way so you classify him as good. (objective)
I think in most conversations, most people will not pay much attention to the difference most of the time. However there are rules to deal with it when it does make a difference and this example shows that the rules are there.
Sitesurf says only about ten percent of adjectives qualify to be moved from one side of the noun to another. That means BANGS will work most of the time and only in test situations will anybody much care when it doesn't.
Unfortunately, we are in a test situation.
Yes. I know. I have dozens of them. The current ones are sort of random.
I have actually just started using excel to develop hundreds, maybe thousands of them, in a systematic way.
For anyone interested in how to accumulate so many mnemonics, the system I use is called memory palace. It is like reconstructing a physical journey through a familiar setting like a building in your memory and attaching desired data to way stations along the route.
It is an ancient technique combined with modern neuroscience. There is more to it of course but that is the access process. Using related techniques to lay down the memories is a large part of it.
Professor Metivier has made a career out of teaching it but memory champions all over the world use variations of it in their competitions.
But the speaker has judged it to be good. The speaker says that he is classifying the behavior as good. By placing the adjective after the noun he is implicitly classifying behavior rather than making a judgement about character.
He looks at relatively objective data such as behavior and judges it to be good. He may be wrong but that doesn't affect what it is that he is talking about.
It does not much matter whether it is called an "adjectif invariable" or "adverbe utilisé comme adjectif".
I suspect that "c'est un homme/un garçon... bien" is shortened from "c'est un XX bien né, bien éduqué, bien élevé" which might have lost its adjective with time and usage.
Duo uses translation exercises as an instructional method. In that system grammar issues are resolved in the discussion pages. Most groupings in Duo have a couple of paragraphs of tips an notes at the beginning of the first lesson of that group.
I don't think that they are available in the app. The new look with crowns has also rendered the discussion pages difficult to read on my desktop but that may vary with others. Possibly Duo used apple computers to design web pages viewed mostly with p.c. browsers.
Can you access this?
A method of quickly categorizing adjectives to determine if they should be placed in front of the noun.
Number (but with lots of exceptions)
Goodness or badness
Size (except with people)
B.A.N.G.S., as described, pretty well captures those adjectives which are subjective/figurative or are inherent qualities of the noun and therefore should be placed in front.
Adjectives which are objective/literal and serve to classify the noun go after the noun. These types of adjectives do not usually fall into the B.A.N.G.S convention. Some people refer to it as the B.A.G.S. tool because Numbers provides so many common exceptions.
Some ten per cent of adjectives can go either in front or after depending on the intended meaning.
I would like to edit my comment above from a couple of years ago which is causing some dispute.
I said in the post that Numbers provides common exceptions. I would like to edit it to read ...appear to be common exceptions.
Whatever actually constitutes a real...number...some words would appear to fall into the Numbers category but are treated in French as if they are not for whatever reason. Because of that I recommend not including the N in BANGS.
But anyone who has read this thread this far should feel free to do whatever they want with my recommendation since they now thoroughly understand the issue.
No, "for the good" does not make sense here. It is more like "He is a good (in the sense of "well raised" or "well educated" or even just "born well") boy." as opposed to "well behaved" which would be "C'est un bon garçon." Of course, one would expect him to be well behaved also if he were brought up well, but a boy could make a mistake and this could be said to indicate that it is not how he usually acts.
Maybe he is just absent minded. He is a bad boy because he always leaves the door ajar and the animals get out. You classify him as bad for the purposes of a particular comment or conversation but everyone understands he isn't inherently bad in a moral sense. He isn't deliberately leaving the door open just so he can get attention or cause disruption.
The phrase (C'est un garçon DE bien. ) Would be more appropriate to talk about moral value than (C'est un garçon bien).
The sentence (C'est un garçon de bien.) does not leave room for interpretation.
The (De) is important.
Sorry for my english. I speak google translat.:)
No seriously, I speak more french.
If you made such a bold statement on an English language site instead of French there would be hundreds of comments arguing back and forth over your point.
"Adverbs typically answer questions such as how?, in what way?, when?, where?, and to what extent?. This function is called the adverbial function...." creates a lot of difficulty when trying to classify something as only an adverb or an adjective.
I am not saying you are wrong. However, there are a lot people who would not agree that you are categorically correct.
Yes, used with a verb like "smell" ("look" or "seem" would work the same way), "good" and "bad" are adjectives. These verbs (used as above: "We smell the sausages" is obviously different, with a transitive use of "smell") are being used as linking verbs, so it's natural that they would be completed by adjectives.
You are exactly right. Bien is an adverb, meaning "well" not "good". It is not an adjective, but here it is posing as an adjective after the noun. I'm guessing that just like with "dummy" subjects, there is an absent verb. This sentence could mean that the boy behaves well, Sitesuf, is that even in the ballpark?
I found 3 different definitions for the word "bien" here: http://www.linternaute.com/dictionnaire/fr/definition/bien/ So turns out, it can be used as an adjective and a noun too.
Would that be related to the fact that objective adjectives are placed after the noun, i.e., garçon, while subjective adjectives are placed before the noun? And as you have stated in your opinion 'un garçon bien' refers to moral values, which is pretty objective, while 'un bon garçon' refers to goodness of the boy in relation to badness, which is subjective.
il est un garçon bien is not correct.
the rule is that when the English is [he/she is + modified noun] or [they are + modified noun], you have to change to "c'est" or "ce sont" respectively:
he is a good soldier = c'est un bon soldat
she is a friend of mine = c'est une amie à moi
they are Americans = ce sont des Américains
note: a modified noun is a noun + article or adjective or both
Sitesurf posted 3 three examples of when to use "ce" instead of "il", with the rule being that modified nouns require "ce". The first two examples have clearly modified nouns ("good soldier", "friend of mine"), but the third does not (just "Americans"). Thus I was confused why it also gets a "ce".
I'm curious about casual use to a dog, such as "That's a good boy!" which is often vernacularized to " 't's-a good bow-ay" - Would you say bon or bien? Before or after? I'm sure the answer exists in the plethora of comments, as this is the first I recall hearing of "BANGS/BAGS"
I look forward to a reply from a native speaker. My dictionary says it should be the former, but to my ear it does vary. (Definitely not an English "say" with a dipthong, however.). Also, I hear that when there is a liason and the "t" is pronounced, as in this case, the preceding vowel is slightly flatter and really sounds like "eh," but without the liason it sometimes sounds a little higher.
When you say things are o.k. you generally mean things are good in some way. That is because life is full of risk, potential problems and difficulties. Good times are less assured. When things are o.k. that means you are not troubled too much by by bad things. That is a good thing in itself.
When you say a person is o.k. you generally mean he/she is acceptable. Life is full of good people and bad. When you say a person is o.k. you are saying he is not one of the bad people. But you haven't gone so far as to say he is a good person.
But what if you want to say something else about the boy?
Like maybe he has integrity or the like. Rather than just a description of his behavior or how he presents himself, you choose to talk about some inherent quality that produces the good behavior. If you do choose to do that, bien is a perfectly fine word to use. And if you do talk about inherent quality then you place it after the verb.
The alternative translations tell you what you can use in some circumstances. They don't tell you what you should use. You have just learned that while you can use decent, you shouldn't unless context seems to indicate that is the best translation.
I want Duo to show me possible uses of words so I am not surprised when I see them used that way. Marking me wrong when I misuse them shows me the limits of the alternative in question.