French Grammar

By taking the time to understand how the French language works, you'll be able to speak French naturally, and read and write in French. We know this can be one of the more challenging parts of your course, and we’re here to help! You can browse the topics, do a search in the top right corner of this page, or start a new conversation. Don’t be shy!

Order of direct and indirect pronouns

Bonjour,in the lessons it is stated that if we have both an indirect and a direct object pronoun (both 3rd person), the direct one comes first. The examples mostly follow this rule, but in lesson 9.8, I stumbled across the sentence “Il lui l'a lancé”. Why...

1 reply - Last post by Margaret-RocketLanguages - April 25, 2022

"Désolée d'être si fatiguée" Why feminine?

I came across this example explaining “désolé”, is “désolée” and “fatiguée” feminine only when the speaker is female? Thank you!

2 replies - Last post by YangS8 - April 13, 2022

Désolée d'être si fatiguée.

Désolée d'être si fatiguée. I'm wondering what the d' is doing in this sentence?   Désolée = Sorry (f)etre = to be si = sofatiguée = tired (f)

3 replies - Last post by RobertC106 - March 17, 2022

Lesson 14.5 Inconsistant translation

In this lesson:"We will leave soon to the beach" is translated as:"Nous partons bientôt à la plage"But "We will leave soon" is translated as:"Nous allons bientôt partir"Why isn't  "We will leave soon to the beach"translated as "Nous allons bientôt partir ...

3 replies - Last post by Janet33 - March 15, 2022

s'asseoir

Other than, asseyons-nous, I can't recall ever seeing a present tense, imparfait or simple future form of s'asseoir (to sit down, etc.) used.Present tense seems to always be in the form of être assis (to be seated). Par exemple,  je suis assis (I am seate...

5 replies - Last post by Mitchell-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - January 27, 2022

accents

Does Rocket French have a little touch pad I can bring up on screen with all the accents needed for the written exercises?  I have a French laptop but it doesn't have some of the accents that are necessary,  I would like to just be able to click on the co...

1 reply - Last post by La gouttelette - December 5, 2021

Does this need subjunctive?

I was joking with a French friend. I wrote:S'ils m’éclateront, je t’éclaterai.I thought putting both in future tense was correct.She wrote back (after a laugh) that I should use subjunctive…S'ils m'éclatent, je t'éclaterai. I searched my grammar book and ...

1 reply - Last post by Mitchell-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - August 4, 2021

two past participles

In lesson 17.0, "preparing a party" I see two different spellings the past participle of prévoir.Quelle sorte de surprise as-tu prévue...Qu'est-ce que tu as prévu comme surprise ?Why are there two differet spellings?Todd

4 replies - Last post by Mitchell-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - July 1, 2021

placement of toujours in passé composé

Bonjour. I'm wondering why toujours comes before the negation in (L 20.3),et John n'a toujours pas trouvé de qui on parlait la dernière fois.(and John still hasn't found out who we were talking about last time.)I don't remember seeing this before. Is it t...

5 replies - Last post by Mitchell-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - July 1, 2021

Question from Lesson 17.0 - Preparing a Party

In the dialog of lesson 17.0, “Preparing a Party," Eric says: Je pensais que l’on pourrais faire la fête dans le jardin et inviter tous ses amis et la famille. Everything makes sense to me except for one thing: why did he say “que l'on pourrais"? I would ...

11 replies - Last post by RobertC106 - June 30, 2021

Variable pronunciation of the final 'e'

Hi,I am trying to understand when the final ‘e’ of certain words seems to be pronounced ‘eh’.For example, carte blanche sounds like “cart-eh blanche" even though carte alone has a silent ‘e.’I assume it's due to the associated words in the sentence, but n...

3 replies - Last post by Mitchell-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - June 8, 2021

Chapter 12.1 de/des

Salut encore,  Chapter 12.1 highlighted my issues with “de", as in the writing task, I kept getting it wrong ("de" when “des” was needed and vice versa). I am clear on “beaucoup de” - always “de”: beaucoup de coutumes / beaucoup de vin.But then again with...

1 reply - Last post by Mitchell-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - May 5, 2021

Pratique verb conjugation.

Does anyone know a good site for practicing my verb conjugation?

1 reply - Last post by Mitchell-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - May 5, 2021

French literautre vocab and grammar

Bonjour-I am currently reading my second book in French- The adventures of Clara if anyone is familiar with it. As there are no translations, I was hoping for some clarification on some of the passages.Ils lui posent beaucoup de questions, ils veulent tou...

4 replies - Last post by CalliW - April 11, 2021

present subjunctive in reference to past tense ?

It appears that when the present subjunctive is indicated, it's also used to refer to the past tense. As in, Je suis surpris que la décoration soit aussi belle.(I am surprised that the decoration is so beautiful.)J'ai été surpris que la décoration soit au...

8 replies - Last post by RobertC106 - March 24, 2021

Miscellaneous Questions- French Level 1

Bonjour! Sometimes I would like clarification on phrases or concepts that don't necessarily fit into a lesson. This will be my forum post dedicated to hopefully getting my random questions answered. Any and all help is truly appreciated! 1. Ça te dit? Wh...

27 replies - Last post by CalliW - March 19, 2021

Chapter 9.2 ce, cela ca

Salut tout le monde, I feel a bit unsure about the use of ce, cela, ca In chapter 9.2 we have the sentence “cela fait plus d'une heure…” and I keep wanting to say “ca fait” or “ce fait”. When do I use which and in howfar are they interchangeable? Il faut ...

2 replies - Last post by Desi2020 - March 16, 2021

French Course

Why on earth is it considered a good idea to expand our conversation using Future Tense in Level 1 Lesson 6 when Future tenses are not even taught until Level 2 Lesson 9, and then at the end of that set of lessons????? It simply confuses and reduces enjoy...

3 replies - Last post by Desi2020 - March 8, 2021

Ambiguous phrase

“Il y a plus de lait dans le frigo.” ( In module 12.8)In casual speech it means the opposite to what it does in formal speech. How would the listener know what to believe?

6 replies - Last post by RobertC106 - February 24, 2021

Asking a question

From lesson 7: Can you explain the the need for “elles” at the end of this question? I understand the noun follows the verb in questions, but usually having reversing the order would be a simple declarative. In this case, it would make no sense for elle t...

8 replies - Last post by RobertC106 - February 24, 2021

Module 5 Grammar & Vocab Questions

To Whom it May Concern:There are grammar and vocab instances that I would like clarification on:The role of ‘aucun’.- 5.6‘Sans aucun doute’ means ‘without a doubt’; 'sans doute' translates to ‘without doubt.’ ‘Aucun problème' means ‘no problem.’ What exac...

12 replies - Last post by CalliW - February 16, 2021

L12.7 Negation confusion

Lesson 12.7 starts off with the sentence:Vous ne pouvez pas ouvrir un compte en banque.Shortly thereafter, we are advised that, "When there is an indefinite article « un, une » ... in a negative construction, the article changes to « de »".This is clearly...

4 replies - Last post by RobertC106 - February 15, 2021

pas si [adjective] que ça

Bonjour. When I first saw the sentence …Oui, et on va voir que ce n'est pas si terrible que ça et que quelquefois, c'est même amusant !… I wondered what the que ça was for. Then I learned that que ça can mean as that, so that the sentence makes more sense...

2 replies - Last post by RobertC106 - February 15, 2021

Confusion about the translation of new, newer and newest

I am having difficulty understand the adjectives and comparative adjective that are used for new, newer, newest.  Seems like nouveau (nouvel) (m), nouvelle(f), nouveaux(m. p.), and nouvelles(f. p.) are the adjectives.  What is the use of neuve and neuf?  ...

5 replies - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - February 8, 2021

Odd si clause

From L11.5Vous pourrez partir, si vous avez fini vos devoirs.(You will be able to leave, if you have finished your homework.)This strikes me as very peculiar. It seems that this would normally be phrased as either, You will be able to leave, when you have...

3 replies - Last post by Mitchell-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - February 5, 2021

Lesson 20.1 "Ils ont des nouveaux actes"

Hi, I'm confused by this phrase as it appears in lesson 20.1. I thought that when the adjective ("nouveaux") is placed before the noun, you should write “de” rather than “des”. Is this not always the case?Thanks in advance

1 reply - Last post by Mitchell-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - February 3, 2021

Par Train vs. En Train

Just a point I'm curious about. In 1.14 I saw the expression “par train” to mean “by train”, “par voiture” to mean “by car”, etc. I also use Duolingo in parallel to Rocket French and they taught the expression, “en train”, “en voiture”, etc. Are both vali...

5 replies - Last post by devbanana - February 3, 2021

Chapter 1.7 and 1.8 "some"

Hi there,Chapter 1.7 translates “some” in to "des" (some bread = des pain)Chapter 1.8 introduces “of the” which can also translate into “des” and then further explaines that “some” can also be translated with “de la, du, etc.” but provides no explanation ...

2 replies - Last post by Mitchell-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - January 19, 2021

Veuillez ranger .... attacher vos

Bonjour tout le monde,The sentence bellow I see as:(Vous) veuillez ranger …. and so I also expect(Vous) attachez vos ceintures.But it ain't so.  Pourquoi pas?Veuillez ranger votre table en position verticale et attacher vos ceinturesMerci,Vit Novak

3 replies - Last post by Mitchell-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - December 7, 2020

alternative usages for si

Bonjour. So, in reviewing Level 1, I am reacquainted with the use of si to mean oui. Funny, but, ok. The lesson illustrates this use with an example of denying a negative affirmation, which I presume is meant to provide some sort of emphasis.  I also dug ...

9 replies - Last post by Mitchell-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - December 6, 2020

Sentences without a subject

Bonjour tout le monde,I struggle with translating sentences without a subject. For instance:“…Tenter de conserver la curiosité de l'adolescence sous un visage adulte. Pas facile….”a) I am trying to keep the curiosity of the teen age under the adult face. ...

3 replies - Last post by Mitchell-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - December 2, 2020

Future tense

Bonjour! Ok, so, as in English, French uses the aller + infinitive (going to + infinitve) to express future tense. What French doesn't have is the equivalent of will + infinitve. On the other hand, French has a future tense that's formed by verb inflectio...

1 reply - Last post by Mitchell-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - November 29, 2020

un café avec du lait écrémé

Bonjour. I assume that, un café avec du lait écrémé, means, coffee with some skim milk, but can't imagine why it would be stated that way.Is there something wrong with, un café avec lait écrémé, which would presumably mean the milk is to be on the side. O...

2 replies - Last post by RobertC106 - November 19, 2020

Module 4 Grammar Questions

Salut- I am currently going thorough Module 4 of the French course. I have some questions regarding the grammar used throughout the lessons: My first few questions deal with 'de' and articles before nouns. I can't seem to grasp when 'de' is necessary, or...

32 replies - Last post by CalliW - November 14, 2020

Je suis passé devant Michelle. | Il est arrivé avant lui.

Bonjour tout le monde, The first phrase the lesson translates as: I came before Michelle.   But "before" indicates the time. So either the translation should be "I came in front of Michelle", or the french phrase should be Je suis passé avant Michelle, J...

1 reply - Last post by Mitchell-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - November 9, 2020

Lesson 4.3 - une table vs de table

Bonjour !In lesson 4.3, most of the phrases for booking things are “réserver une table” or “une chambre”, except for “Je n'ai pas le temps de réserver de table”.I can't work out why it's changed from “une table” to “de table”. Is it because it's a negativ...

2 replies - Last post by JackieC13 - October 30, 2020

avoir à vs devoir

Bonjour !From L1 Lesson 6.7:I'm wondering about the use of avoir à, rather than an equivalent form of devoir in the sentence:Je n'aurai pas à attendre trop longtemps, quand même ?It took me quite a while to figure out what was going on there (sneaky littl...

4 replies - Last post by RobertC106 - October 29, 2020

The subjunctive and negation

In module 22 about impersonal expressions, the is this example: “j'ai peur que tu ne puisses venir.” I have seen this “semi” negation previously and question why it is not “j'ai peur que tu ne puisses pas venir"?

2 replies - Last post by Mitchell-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - October 23, 2020

LESSON 14.6

The title should be “prepositions”, not “propositions”.

1 reply - Last post by Mitchell-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - October 10, 2020

L1 5.7 questions

Bonjour !In the sentence,C'est hors de question d'aller à la plage par cette pluie !“par” cette pluie seems more appropriate for “by” the rain, as in, washed away by the rain.  “… sous cette pluie” seems like it might be more appropriate here. No?--Also, ...

3 replies - Last post by RobertC106 - October 5, 2020

Module 3.4 Questions/Concerns

Salut- I just finished Level 1 Module 3, and have some lingering questions about content covered in the lessons. 1. Non, la date est déjà imprimée sur les tickets. (No, the date is already printed on the tickets.) What is the role of imprimée in this sen...

2 replies - Last post by CalliW - September 2, 2020

Lesson 3.3 Questions and Comments

Salut- I am currently on lesson 3.3, and there are some grammar occurences that have me a bit stumped.  1. J'adore le vin rouge. Why is 'le' necessary here? Is this just how Adorer works? When followed by a noun it must use the article? 2.  Mais je les ...

7 replies - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - August 26, 2020

1`4.2 Et tu es prêt pour ton entretien ? should it not be "t'es" ?

It seems  that there should be the contraction t'es.  Am I wrong? In 14.2 few sentences above the Et tu es prêt ... , there is this sentence Mais t'es, pourtant, pas au chomage ? P.S. I know it is a nit-picking, but may be there is a scheme to it.

1 reply - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - June 29, 2020

Placement of adjectives: Nous irons à Paris la première semaine vs Nous acheteron de vin rouge

It seems to me so natural to say, for instance -Nous acheteron de vin rouge - with the adjective after the noun. Also it seems to me somewhat more natural to say  Nous irons à Paris la semain première.  Even so that I can think of cases where the adjectiv...

3 replies - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - June 9, 2020

Il est certain que tu vas nous manquer

The translation of the sentence In the lesson 13.7 seems transposed Il est certain que tu vas nous manquer.  It is true that we are going to miss you. Should not it be as follows? It is true (sure) that you are going to miss us.   Vit Novak

4 replies - Last post by VitN - June 2, 2020

13. 13.8 subjunctive explanation and presentation

I have heaped enough praise on Rocket French, so I earned now the right to say something awful. The presentation of subjunctive in lesson 13.6 and 13.7 is terrible. In my native Czech I love using subjunctive as it is a very elegant way to grasp the mood....

1 reply - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - May 24, 2020

Il est important que l'on se connaisse mieux

This sentence gave me a break due to "que l'on" instead of just "q'on".  I do sense the answer as l'on is not just "us" but really "us two" (or however many people are present at the moment).  Yet at the same time, it does not sound good to say Il est imp...

2 replies - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - May 19, 2020

"De" or "de la"

Hello! Enclosing two examples from lesson 7.3 1. Montons au sommet de la montagne. 2. Descendons jusqu'au refuge de montagne. The first sentence sounds right to me. The second does not. Should it not be "Descendons jusqu'au refuge de LA montagne"? Or if n...

6 replies - Last post by SBack - May 5, 2020

About 11.2

In « car je l’aimais bien cette veste » the program said it means “ because I really liked this jacket” but there are two objects in this sentence: “la” in “l’aimais” and “veste”, shouldn’t it be « car j’aimais bien cette veste » ?

1 reply - Last post by Liss-Rocket-Languages-Tutor - May 4, 2020

Ne pas devoir

Can anyone tell me why this example in my lesson is: "Nous acheterons assez a manger pour ne pas devoir aller au restaurant" when my logic tells me I want to put it this way: "Nous acheterons assez a manger pour ne devrons pas aller au restaurant" And...

3 replies - Last post by VitN - April 12, 2020

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