black friday cyber monday last chance to save 25% on all packages »

Je mange le pain ou du pain ?

DavidB1Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

Je mange le pain ou du pain ?

Hi Aurélie: Maybe you could put some clarification in the lessons re. the above le/du question. Unfortunately, it falls in the middle of the partitive and the definite article lessons. As your examples above, I had always seen that the definite article was used for general cases, the classic being “J’aime le thé”. But to me, “Je bois le thé” seems just as general (and same meaning). As would “Je mange le pain”. But it seems that for verbs involving consumption of the item that the partitive should be used; as in one of the lesson questions “Je bois du jus d’orange au petit-déjeuner.” That sure seems general to me. Would “I like tea at breakfast” now be “du thé” ? Thank you.

Asked 1 year ago
CécileKwiziq team memberCorrect answer

Hi David and Chris,

I can't think of an example when 'Je mange le pain' would be correct apart from if it was the specific one you were talking about, for instance,

Je finis/mange le pain qui reste I'll finish/eat the remaining bread

If you use verbs like aimer/adorer/préférer/ détester you will use the definite article.

If you use verbs of consumption ( to use David's term) like manger/boire it will be with the partitive unless you make it specific as with my bread example above.

I hope this is clearer but I will add this lesson to the list for reviews.

 

 

 

 

ChrisC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

Je mange le pain is a general statement you would use to indicate that you, in general eat bread (as in, e.g., you're not gluten intolerant).

Je mange du pain you'd say if you wanted to indicate that, e.g., you eat some bread with the meal.

DavidB1Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

Thanks Chris, however “le pain” was marked incorrect in a quiz with the question “Aurélie mange _______ . / Aurélie eats bread. With the “correct” answer of “du pain”. 

Je mange le pain ou du pain ?

Hi Aurélie: Maybe you could put some clarification in the lessons re. the above le/du question. Unfortunately, it falls in the middle of the partitive and the definite article lessons. As your examples above, I had always seen that the definite article was used for general cases, the classic being “J’aime le thé”. But to me, “Je bois le thé” seems just as general (and same meaning). As would “Je mange le pain”. But it seems that for verbs involving consumption of the item that the partitive should be used; as in one of the lesson questions “Je bois du jus d’orange au petit-déjeuner.” That sure seems general to me. Would “I like tea at breakfast” now be “du thé” ? Thank you.

Sign in to submit your answer

Don't have an account yet? Join today

Ask a question

Find your French level for FREE

Test your French to the CEFR standard

Find your French level
Getting that for you now...