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FR: X et moi, nous ; tes frères et toi, vous - reprise du sujet

Discussion in 'French and English Grammar / Grammaire française et anglaise' started by jbailz, Jun 16, 2008.

  1. jbailz New Member

    Washington, DC
    English
    I have a few friends who live in France, so whenever we talk online, we always try to write in French.

    During one of my first French classes, I think I remember my professor saying that, with no exceptions, one must include the subject pronoun when we speak or write. But I've noticed my French friends often exclude the pronoun.

    For example, I wrote to my friend, "ma famille et moi, nous avons déménagé à Seattle," but afterwards, I thought it sounded repetitive to include "nous" because "ma famille et moi" was obviously the subject. Another example would be, "Ma sœur, elle a 21 ans". Is "elle" necessary?

    Any help is appreciated!
     
  2. sandman2 Senior Member

    English - Canada
    Your instincts are right, you DON'T always need a subject pronoun, although you do need a subject. In your two examples, your subjects are 'ma famille et moi' and 'ma soeur'.

    […]
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2012
  3. valskyfrance Senior Member

    FRANCE
    FRANCE, FRENCH
    Ma soeur a 21 ans (no elle, sinon il y a répétition du sujet.)
    Ma famille et moi... (même chose, pas besoin du Nous)
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2012
  4. Outsider Senior Member

    Portuguese (Portugal)
    First of all, you can leave out "nous" and "elle" but that still leaves you with a subject:

    "Ma famille et moi avons déménagé à Seattle" --> "Ma famille et moi" is the subject of "avons déménagé".
    "Ma sœur a 21 ans" --> "Ma sœur" is the subject of "a".

    Secondly, while leaving out the subject pronoun is possible in both cases, I believe adding it is more idiomatic and colloquial.
     
  5. Fred_C

    Fred_C Senior Member

    France
    Français
    Hi,
    yes and no.
    Adding an extra pronoun if the person is third singular or plural is indeed very colloquial, and not recommended at all in a written text.
    "Ma soeur, elle a 21 ans" is very colloquial.
    The normal form is "Ma soeur a 21 ans".
    For first and second person plural pronouns (nous and vous), on the contrary, adding a superfluous pronoun is quite normal.
    "Ma famille et moi, nous avons déménagé" is a normal sentence.
    omitting the pronoun "nous" as in "ma famille et moi avons déménagé" sounds written french, and you are unlikely to hear it spoken. (That does not mean never, though!)
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2012
  6. Wotcher Junior Member

    Florida
    USA English and Spanish
    In French, do you always have to use the subject pronoun even though you are using a noun in the sentence?

    Example:

    " Cette semaine, mon mari et moi, nous allons partir en vacances ".

    Is it necessary to include nous, or can it be left out of the sentence?

    Thanks for your help.
     
  7. Oddmania

    Oddmania Senior Member

    France
    French
    No, it's not necessary :)

    Mon mari et moi allons partir en vacances.

    Adding nous sounds more colloquial.
     
  8. Wotcher Junior Member

    Florida
    USA English and Spanish
    Thanks so much!

    I've always been used to using the pronouns at all time. Now I know I don't have to! :D
     
  9. Oddmania

    Oddmania Senior Member

    France
    French
    Actually, many many many French people do use them :)

    I think saying Mon mari et moi allons partir en vacances sounds rather... Well, not really old-fashioned, but a bit pretentious (only while speaking, obviously).

    This is a French particularity. Mon mari et moi allons partir may sound too long, so speakers think they have to add Nous (or On, which sounds more colloquial) to start over the sentence.

    Mon mari et moi, nous allons partir en vacances.
     
  10. frankjac New Member

    Corneliuis,NC
    english - USA
    "Charles at I speak French."

    Distinctions or levels of language or frequencey between:

    Charles et moi, nous parlons francais.

    AND

    Charles et moi parlons francais.
     
  11. xtrasystole

    xtrasystole Senior Member

    France
    Both are strictly equivalent, I believe.

    The latter is more concise, flows smoothly and may sound slightly better in spoken language (perhaps).
     
  12. SwissPete

    SwissPete Senior Member

    94044 USA
    Français (CH), AE (California)
    "Charles and I speak French."

    Right?
     
  13. frankjac New Member

    Corneliuis,NC
    english - USA
    Right, Charles and I speak French.

    So, frequency of either ---
    Charles et moi parlons français.
    ou
    Charles et moi nous parlons français.
     
  14. xtrasystole

    xtrasystole Senior Member

    France
    depends on the context.

    75% vs 25%, I would say.
     
  15. The Prof

    The Prof Senior Member

    What about:
    "Charles et moi, on parle français." ?

    I have often heard "on" used in this type of sentence, but never been sure how widespread or acceptable it is.
     
  16. Lacuzon

    Lacuzon Senior Member

    France
    French - France
    Hi,

    It is colloquial.
     
  17. xtrasystole

    xtrasystole Senior Member

    France
    Yes :thumbsup: , that's a very common form —but colloquial. In spoken French only.
     
  18. frankjac New Member

    Corneliuis,NC
    english - USA
    Clearly, you get into problems when you want to say:
    "Charles and I are taking a walk."
    Dropping the subject pronoun, then gives us:
    "Charles et moi nous promenons.

    vs."Charles et moi nous nous promenons."

    […]
     
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2010
  19. Doude Senior Member

    Toronto, Canada
    French - France
    No, you definitely need "Charles et moi nous nous promenons", "Charles et moi nous promenons" can be understood but it is a bit confusing...

    […]
     
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2010
  20. Maître Capello

    Maître Capello Mod et ratures

    Suisse romande
    French – Switzerland
    Well, actually, both are correct and I prefer the latter… :rolleyes:
     
  21. Doude Senior Member

    Toronto, Canada
    French - France
    Sure, you can say it but it seems to me a bit strange when spoken. It wouldn't be ambiguous if you write it, but in oral communication, I prefer saying "Charles et moi, nous nous promenons"... But that's a detail ;)
     
  22. Maître Capello

    Maître Capello Mod et ratures

    Suisse romande
    French – Switzerland
    Why would it be ambiguous in speech? :confused:

    At any rate, you prefer duplicating nous and I prefer not repeating it—it is really a matter of personal taste…
     
  23. Doude Senior Member

    Toronto, Canada
    French - France
    I asked other friends about that, and they also told me that they prefer "Charles et moi nous promenons" when written and "Charles et moi nous nous promenons" when spoken...
    But I agree with you, that's personal taste; I just gave mine to frankjac ;)
     
  24. Francobritannocolombien Senior Member

    Canada
    French - "transatlantic"
    It's not so much that it's ambiguous but it is somewhat confusing because you can't see the comma when you speak, so it takes a while to process the "nous": is it the subject or the object of the verb? Since "promener" can't be used without an object (reflexive or direct), you have to be certain that the sentence is over, and that the speaker is not going to add "le chien" at the end, to know that the object has to be "nous" and that the verb is used reflexively.

    Now with a verb that can be used both intransitively and transitively, that structure could definitely be ambiguous when used in speech: in "Charles et moi(,) nous parlons souvent", the punctuation makes the whole difference.
     
  25. xtrasystole

    xtrasystole Senior Member

    France
    I agree 100% with Francobritannocolombien. I don't think it's just a matter of personal taste.
     
  26. Maître Capello

    Maître Capello Mod et ratures

    Suisse romande
    French – Switzerland
    OK, that sentence is ambiguous because you changed the verb, but with (se) promener, I really don't see any ambiguity or confusion… Do you really find the following sentence confusing? :confused:

    Charles et moi nous promenons souvent au bord du lac.
     
  27. Nicomon

    Nicomon Senior Member

    Montréal
    Français, Québec ♀
    This sentence is perfectly clear to me. I don't like the sound of « et moi nous nous » either.

    But then if you stop at promenons, I agree with Fcb; you have to be sure that the sentence is over. Promenons... qui? où?

    Charles et moi faisons une promenade / Charles et moi, on se promène
    Je me promène/fais une promenade en compagnie de Charles

    Et à la québécoise (familier... et calqué) : Je prends une marche avec Charles
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2010
  28. Francobritannocolombien Senior Member

    Canada
    French - "transatlantic"
    The title of the thread I answered was "Charles and I speak French." C'est pas moi qui ai changé le verbe le premier, m'sieur!


    I don't find it confusing if I read it, but orally, as I explained, there would be a brief moment of confusion until I can process "nous" as a reflexive object, i.e. when I hear that "souvent" is not followed by a direct object such as, say, "notre vieille grand-mère."
     
  29. Maître Capello

    Maître Capello Mod et ratures

    Suisse romande
    French – Switzerland
    :D You are correct regarding the verb, but you did change the end of the original question though, and that makes a big difference… Charles et moi parlons le français is indeed not confusing at all, contrary to your own sentence, Charles et moi(,) nous parlons souvent :p
     
  30. Francobritannocolombien Senior Member

    Canada
    French - "transatlantic"
    Maître Capello et moi nous chamaillons en français et en anglais. :p
     
  31. WatsJusto Senior Member

    English - The States
    Pour la phrase: "Are you and your brothers going to the beach this weekend?", je pense que c'est possible de dire: "Allez-vous à la plage ce week-end, tes frères et toi?" ou "Est-ce que vous allez à la plage ce week-end, tes frères et toi?" mais, est-ce qu'on peut effacer le mot "vous" et faire suivre le verbe après le sujet, comme: "Est-ce que tes frères et toi allez à la plage ce week-end?" Il me semble que ça ne soit pas possible pour 'vous' ni pour 'nous', comme: "Mon ami et moi allons au marché", il faut dire: "Mon ami et moi, nous allons..." j'ai raison?
     
  32. kleintje971 Junior Member

    French & English& Créole
    En français littéraire et propre, le nous/vous est obligatoire. Irez-vous tes frères et toi à la plage ce weeke-end?
     
  33. Jeanne75 Senior Member

    French - France
    Hi,

    Actually everything is correct in your proposals (I added one):
    "Allez-vous à la plage ce week-end, tes frères et toi?"
    "Est-ce que vous allez à la plage ce week-end, tes frères et toi?"
    "Est-ce que tes frères et toi allez à la plage ce week-end?"
    "Tes frères et toi allez-vous à la plage ce week end"

    "Mon ami et moi allons au marché"
    "Mon ami et moi, nous allons..."

    The fact to add "est-ce que" or add an "incise" is less formal but gramatically everything is absolutely correct in my view.

    Klientje971 is right, in a question you will have to add "vous" but because of the interrogative form after the verb and with an hyphen.

    In the affirmative I don't think it is necessary - but again more formal.
    Tes frères et toi irez à la plage is fine by me.

    Cheers​
     
    Last edited: Oct 3, 2012
  34. Maître Capello

    Maître Capello Mod et ratures

    Suisse romande
    French – Switzerland
    :thumbsdown: Non, pas du tout. La reprise du sujet par le pronom correspondant est certes obligatoire si on fait l'inversion, mais l'inversion n'est certainement pas la seule façon de poser une question, même dans un contexte littéraire. Les questions avec est-ce que conviennent tant dans la langue de tous les jours que dans un langage châtié. Et dans ce cas, il vaut mieux ne pas alourdir inutilement la phrase et éviter la duplication du sujet.

    Est-ce que tes frères et toi allez à la plage ce week-end ?
    Tes frères et toi allez-vous à la plage ce week-end ?

    Mes amis et moi allons au marché.

    […]
     
    Last edited: Dec 23, 2013
  35. WatsJusto Senior Member

    English - The States
    Merci beaucoup à tous! Je suis vraiment reconnaissant de vos réponses! Cette discussion m'a beaucoup aidé.
     

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