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C'est with a determiner

KatieA2Kwiziq community member

C'est with a determiner

I have to say I start to sweat when this question shows up on my tests, because I will ALWAYS get it wrong.  I have read the lesson over and over and it seems like I will decided that I should use c'est because there is a determiner, but then it tells me to use elle or il.  Then I use il or elle because there isn't a determiner and it will tell me to use c'est.  I feel like all the lessons help me, and I see my mistakes, but this one is not helping me.  Any other way to explain this to me?

Asked 3 months ago
JimC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor Correct answer

Hi Katie,

This might help:-

MaartenC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor Correct answer

It is always “c’est” when followed by an article, whether definite or indefinite

C'est vs il/elle est: Saying it is/she is/he is

KatieA2Kwiziq community member
Tu aimes la pizza? Oui, ________ est délicieux, surtout en Italie !       So according to the quiz this is c'est not elle.  To me we are speaking about the exact pizza that she is eating... and there is no article in this sentence.  I don't understand why it is c'est... it doesn't fit that rule, there is no article and it isn't a general pizza.  In my opinion it is a specific pizza.  Still struggling.
KatieA2Kwiziq community member
Tu aimes la pizza? Oui, ________ est délicieux, surtout en Italie !       So according to the quiz this is c'est not elle.  To me we are speaking about the exact pizza that she is eating... and there is no article in this sentence.  I don't understand why it is c'est... it doesn't fit that rule, there is no article and it isn't a general pizza.  In my opinion it is a specific pizza.  Still struggling.
MaartenC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

Katie - the example you give is effectively covered under the ambiguous cases in the lesson Tu aimes la pizza ? "You like pizza ?" (generally) or do "You like the pizza ?" (Specific to one pizza). 

The question uses an article, the answer of "C’est délicieux" (general) does not. ("Elle est délicieuse" does not fit here, as that is specific in meaning, and not a good fit to be followed by “especially in Italy”). 

By replying “it is delicious, especially in Italy” - the context is general and “c’est délicieux“ is correct. (Unless you are thinking this is 'shorthand' for something like "(the) pizza is delicious, especially {while sitting here eating it} in Italy"). 

The thing to remember from the previous discussion is if you did use “(Oui,) c’est UNE pizza délicieuse”  - this is specific, and “Elle est UNE pizza délicieuse” is not correct.

(There are a few expressions where the 'following article' dogma does not apply eg “Il était une fois”, but in general speech you are not going to use Il/Elle être ARTICLE- NOUN ).

See link for further information 

https://www.frenchtoday.com/blog/french-grammar/cest-versus-il-elle-est/

C'est with a determiner

I have to say I start to sweat when this question shows up on my tests, because I will ALWAYS get it wrong.  I have read the lesson over and over and it seems like I will decided that I should use c'est because there is a determiner, but then it tells me to use elle or il.  Then I use il or elle because there isn't a determiner and it will tell me to use c'est.  I feel like all the lessons help me, and I see my mistakes, but this one is not helping me.  Any other way to explain this to me?

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