les vs des

Deborah C1Kwiziq community member

les vs des

I have trouble understanding when to use les and when to use des when you don't use an article in English.  For example, it is j'ai les yeux bleus but je porte des lunettes.  I have found the same problem in other exercises.  For example, j'aime les salades but je mange des salades avec des framboises.  Is there a simple rule to tell when I should use les and when I should use des when I wouldn't use anything in English.  Thanks so much.

Asked 4 years ago
ChrisC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

You are not alone grappling with this. The quick answer is to use les when speaking of the general thing and des when you refer to the specific. Also, des is used to refer to „some“ of a larger assembly. But that doesn't cover all the cases. Maybe an expanded lesson on this topic would help?

J‘ai les yeux bleus. — I have blue eyes.

J‘aime les yeux bleus. — I love blue eyes  

J‘ai des yeux bleus. — I have some blue eyes.

SeanC1Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

I agree that this requires an expanded lesson.  I understand the rule but frequently use "des" in the writing challenges when the correct word is "les."

les vs des

I have trouble understanding when to use les and when to use des when you don't use an article in English.  For example, it is j'ai les yeux bleus but je porte des lunettes.  I have found the same problem in other exercises.  For example, j'aime les salades but je mange des salades avec des framboises.  Is there a simple rule to tell when I should use les and when I should use des when I wouldn't use anything in English.  Thanks so much.

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