FR: empoigne-s-en [sic]

ripcurlgirl

Member
English - Australia
Salut tout le monde,

Empoigne-s-en autant que tu en as besoin.

Can someone please explain the beginning structure of this sentence. I know it is written in the imperative and means, more or less,
"Grab as many (of them) as you need" but can someone explain the « -s- » in this sentence? I realise that « en » means (of them though I don't know why it's used twice) but, most of all, the -s- has thrown me.

I have searched the forums and come up empty handed and I have never seen this type of structure before.

Personally, I think it is a typo and should be « Empoigne-en autant que tu en as besoin. » […]

Any and all help or input would be greatly appreciated.

Merci d'avance
 
Last edited by a moderator:
  • Dazza

    Member
    English
    It's purely a matter of aesthetics; what sounds good to the ear.
    Empoigne-(z)-en also avoids confusion with empoignant.
    It's like "donne moi-z-en" in spoking French; in "correct" French this would be "donne m'en." but doesn't sound good in spoken French.
     

    Bezoard

    Senior Member
    French - France
    Make a search with "s euphonique" and you will find lots of threads on that same subject.
    Search results for query: s euphonique
    You can also read this :
    Banque de dépannage linguistique - S euphonique

    There is a difference between "empoignes-en" and "donne moi-z-en" mentioned by Dazza. The first one is standard and official. The second one is non-standard and considered as poor French, although it is the result of the same euphonic preferences.
     

    ripcurlgirl

    Member
    English - Australia
    But Dazza, this was not a spoken sentence but a written one. The grammar doesn't make any sense to me. I can understand that it may be sounded that way in speech but written that way ??

    OK thanks for that link Bezoard, it helped a lot and made a lot of sense.
    With that in mind, shouldn't the sentence have been written « Empoignes-en ... » NOT « Empoigne-s-en ... » ?

    […]

    Merci
     
    Last edited by a moderator:

    Dazza

    Member
    English
    But Dazza, this was not a spoken sentence but a written one. The grammar doesn't make any sense to me. I can understand that it may be sounded that way in speech but written that way ??
    With that in mind, shouldn't the sentence have been written « Empoignes-en ... » NOT « Empoigne-s-en ... » ?
    You're right but in English we also quote speech in writing.

    Maybe because it's the "impératif" (ordering someone to do something) where the S is omitted like "vas" in "va t'en". So to compensate for this missing S, it's written "empoigne-s-en" for the purpose of euphony as Bezoard wrote.
     
    Last edited by a moderator:

    Bezoard

    Senior Member
    French - France
    No, actually, it is or should be written "empoignes-en", as rightly noted by ripcurlgirl. Although it's a letter added for euphony, it is made part of the word, without hyphen, for all the verbs of the first group (goûtes-en, manges-en), probably for aligning the writing with the imperative of verbs of other groups (prends-en,) which have a regular ending -s at the imperative tense.
    But in other cases of letters added for euphony, the hyphen can be necessary : va-t-en.
     

    ripcurlgirl

    Member
    English - Australia
    So to compensate for this missing S, it's written "empoigne-s-en" for the purpose of euphony as Bezoard wrote.
    I understand the purpose but don't agree with the way it was written. As the link given by both Bezoard & OLN state:

    À l’impératif, on ajoute en effet un « s » à va devant « y », (vas –y) mais on termine pour les mêmes raisons phonétiques par un « s » les verbes du premier groupe à la deuxième personne du singulier s’ils sont employés avec « en », comme « donnes –en » , « parles-en », « manges-en ».

    […]
     
    Last edited:
    < Previous | Next >
    Top