FR: différent - place de l'adjectif

jjjbec

Senior Member
England/ English
Hi,

I understand that the adjective 'différent' can be used before and after the noun in French. Can somebody explain to me what the difference in meaning is?

Thanks

Moderator note: Multiple threads have been merged to create this one.
 
Last edited by a moderator:
  • itka

    Senior Member
    français
    I would say before the noun, it means "various", "diverse" and after the noun, it properly means "different".

    J'ai vu différents modèles de jupes.
    I saw various kinds of shirts.

    J'ai choisi un modèle différent.
    I choose a different model.

    I'm afraid that's not always true, but more or less, (let's say 90 %) it is right.
     

    jjjbec

    Senior Member
    England/ English
    Thanks, that makes sense.

    SO what would be the difference between saying

    de differents enfants

    and des enfants differents?

    Thanks
     

    itka

    Senior Member
    français
    You need context to understand.

    So, I take some examples :

    J'ai besoin de l'avis de différents enfants pour savoir si ce livre leur plaira.
    I need the opinion of several children ... (more than one or two...)

    J'ai besoin de l'avis d'enfants différents...
    I need the opinion of different childrent...(children coming from different contries, different social level, etc...)
     

    nettothenetizen

    Senior Member
    English
    Hi! I was wondering when the word "différent" is placed before or after nouns? I've seen different things in different cases, like ces différents besoins, les différentes raisons, but les cultures différentes. Is there a way to tell?

    Thanks!
     

    Micia93

    Senior Member
    France French
    "il y a des raisons / besoins / cultures / différents (es) dans le monde"
    and
    "les différents (es) raisons / besoins / cultures qui expliquent cela ..."

    is it clearer ?
     

    Micia93

    Senior Member
    France French
    of course, an example is not a rule, but let's say that if a sentence begins with
    "il y a" the adjective is after the noun, if the noun starts the sentence, the adjective is then before the word
    I had never thought of that, and can only explain it this way
    wait for an expert in grammar ! :=)
     

    ledders

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Could it be that it's:

    un/une/des + noun + différent

    and

    le/la/les + différent + noun

    ?
     
    Last edited by a moderator:

    TitTornade

    Senior Member
    Hello,
    To me, the meaning is not exactly the same when you change the position of "différent".
    "Dans ce pays cohabitent des personnes de différentes cultures." the meaning is close to: "plusieurs cultures" ; "différent" could mean something as "several".

    "Ces pays ont des cultures différentes." the meaning of "différent" is close to: "not the same".

    But these differences between the two positions are quite small and certainly not always true...

    I hope it helps...
     

    ledders

    Senior Member
    English - England
    I quite don't understand your question :(

    I was just wondering if différent went after the noun when the indefinite article is used, and before the noun when the definite article is used, as that's what your examples seem to show :)

    But the other responses are probably more helpful :eek:
     

    Forero

    Senior Member
    Différent(e)s is less likely to mean various/plusieurs after the indefinite article. Some various/several cultures? Quelques différentes/plusieurs cultures?

    If you mean "different"/"not the same", I imagine you could say "les cultures différentes qu'on a mentionnées" (the [very] different cultures we were talking about).

    N'est-ce pas?
     
    Last edited by a moderator:

    TitTornade

    Senior Member
    I don't think the article plays a role :
    "les différentes cultures que nous avons mentionnées..." = "the various cultures we were talking about..."
    "les cultures différentes que nous avons mentionnées..." = "the (very) different cultures we were talking about..."

    But the differences are really narrow, I guess... ;)
     
    Last edited by a moderator:

    LorenD

    Member
    English
    I am writing a french oral and would like to know if you would say "bâtiments de différentes époques" or "bâtiments de époques différentes". Google translate says "bâtiments de différentes époques" but I don't trust this.
     

    Tochka

    Senior Member
    Les francophones peuvent me corriger, mais il me paraît que...
    If you want to stress the fact that the periods in question all differ from each other, you would place différentes behind the noun, but if you just mean various ages, then it would probably go before it.
     

    Maître Capello

    Mod et ratures
    French – Switzerland
    If you mean various, the adjective should precede the noun; if you mean different, it should follow it.

    différentes époques = various eras
    époques différentes = different eras
     

    Bluelady

    Senior Member
    French - France
    I am writing a french oral and would like to know if you would say "bâtiments de différentes époques" or "bâtiments de époques différentes". Google translate says "bâtiments de différentes époques" but I don't trust this.

    Bâtiments de différentes époques, but anyway bâtiments d'époques différentes is also possible, provided you don't forget the elision of e in de before a word (here, époques) beginning with a vowel.
     

    bcd85

    Member
    English
    I'm so confused. I always thought the word "different" went after the noun. But I just saw this sentence:

    "Ces sont les different parties de mon avion"

    Is it before or after the noun?
     

    Oddmania

    Senior Member
    French
    Hi,

    In this case, différentes is a determiner. It means various or different (These are the various/different parts of...)
    When it comes after the noun, it means "dissimilar".
     

    CapnPrep

    Senior Member
    AmE
    In this case, différentes is a determiner.
    It has the meaning you explained, but it can't be a determiner in this specific example (since it is preceded by les). Différent(e)s can only be used as an indefinite determiner, as in the examples given earlier in this thread.
     

    saltsway

    Member
    English-Canada
    Bonjour,

    Est-ce que l'adjectif "différent" change de sens lorsqu'il est placé avant le verbe? Je crois avoir appris cela dans un cour il y a quelques ans, mais je ne réussis pas à le confirmer dans mon dictionnaire.

    Par exemple: pour de différentes raisons/ pour des raisons différentes

    Dans le premier cas, je croyais qu'il s'agissait de plusieurs raisons, lorsque dans le second, je croyais que l'emphase était sur la différence entre elles.

    Mille fois merci.
     

    mehoul

    Senior Member
    french (du Midi de la France)
    Tu as raison, dans le premier cas ça signifie "several reasons" et dans le deuxième cas "other reasons" (qui suppose qu'on a déjà parlé d'une certaine raison potentielle).
     

    123tsunami321

    Member
    English
    I also have a question about the placement of 'différent'. Is 'deux domaines d'applications différents' translated as 'two different domains of applications' since 'domaines' is a masculine, plural noun and 'différents' is a masculine, plural adjective? If this is the correct translation, why does 'différents' not immediately follow 'domaines'?
     

    Bluelady

    Senior Member
    French - France
    Tes, "domaine d'application" is considered as one word ; you cannot seperate thé elements of a compound word.
     
    Last edited by a moderator:
    Top