C'est la seule réponse que je peux donner

  • KevinW

    Member
    UK, English
    I think that should be 'C'est la seule réponse que je peux donner'.

    As an aside, I wonder whether anybody would say 'C'est la seule réponse que je puisse donner' and if that would imply doubt on the speaker's part?

    Kevin
     

    Loic

    Senior Member
    French native speaker from France
    In linguistic grammar they say that you can say either, but if you use "this" it conveys the idea that you are more involved in the contents of the sentence , less neutral/factual.
    Désolé, je répondais en anglais.
    Donc il est tout-à-fait correct de dire : This is the only answer : l'énonciateur reprend l'idée à son compte, prend position etc.
    Amusant, je viens de faire un cours la-dessus hier :)
     

    DearPrudence

    Dépêche Mod (AL mod)
    IdF
    French (lower Normandy)
    I think that should be 'C'est la seule réponse que je peux donner'.

    As an aside, I wonder whether anybody would say 'C'est la seule réponse que je puisse donner' and if that would imply doubt on the speaker's part?

    Kevin
    Hello

    Yes you're totally right.

    Personally I would have used the subjunctive as well and it wouldn't imply more doubt that with the indicative, it's just that it sounds nicer to my ear :)

    There has been a thread about it here.
    And here is another link that confirms it .
    I copy the interesting passage here in case you wouldn't feel like going through all that :p :
    De même, le subjonctif est fréquent quand la principale contient les termes tels que : le seul, l’unique, le premier, le dernier.
    C’est le seul ami que je lui connaisse)
     
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