FR: Bienvenue dans le vrai Enfer / en Enfer - préposition

HRSTA

New Member
English - Australia
Bonjour!

So I was reading a comic, the title of which was 'Bienvenue dans le vrai Enfer'. The first sentence in it was "Bienvenue en Enfer". I'm a little confused as to why there's a difference with the use of 'dans' and 'en' in these cases. Is it just a case that 'dans' is used because "le vrai" changes 'enfer' from a proper noun to a regular one, while 'en' is used for proper nouns (like in the case of countries, where I've heard 'bienvenue en...' used). Or is it perhaps that 'dans' and 'en' are interchangeable and I'm over thinking this?

Thanks in advance for any help with this issue :)
 
  • jann

    co-mod'
    English - USA
    Is it just a case that 'dans' is used because "le vrai" changes 'enfer' from a proper noun to a regular one,
    I would say "yes" to the first half of your analysis; the addition of a descriptor that involves the definite article to tell us which hell (the "real" one, whatever that is) is the reason for the change.
    while 'en' is used for proper nouns (like in the case of countries, where I've heard 'bienvenue en...' used).
    But I would definitely say "no" to the second half of your analysis. You want to scrap that idea that "en is for proper nouns." There are many proper nouns (including some countries!) that will be introduced by a different preposition, and there are common nouns that can be introduced by en.

    There are general rules to determine the correct preposition for proper nouns that represent geographic place names (a topic too broad for this thread). Although Hell is not a geographic place in the physical sense, it is a proper noun, and it, too, has an assigned preposition (en) in standard usage.

    Does that help? :)
     

    Tibule

    Senior Member
    French
    Did you find this sentence in a french comic, or a comic translated in french? Because "bienvenue dans le vrai Enfer" is not really something I'd say in french. "Bienvenue dans un véritable Enfer" ou "Bienvenue dans le véritable Enfer", depends on what the author wanted to say but not "le vrai Enfer".
     
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