Location of "tout" in "Vous avez tout détruit"

AlexA2Kwiziq community member

Location of "tout" in "Vous avez tout détruit"

Hi, I'm having trouble understanding the way "tout" acts in sentences when being used as a pronoun. In another lesson it says that "tout" can be used as a pronoun, however in passé composé the structure is usually: "subject + object pronoun + auxillary verb + past participle", for example "Je l'ai mangé". 

My understanding is that the correct sentence would be "J'ai tout mangé", and not "Je tout ai mangé". Could someone please help me understand, is there a rule for as to why tout behaves differently than others?

Asked 1 year ago
CélineKwiziq team memberCorrect answer

Bonjour Alex,

Je l’ai mangé l’ = direct object pronoun

Tu lui as parlé → lui = indirect object pronoun

 

→ object pronouns are placed after the subject and before the verb

 

J’ai tout mangé = I ate everything

J’ai trop mangé = I ate too much

J’ai beaucoup mangé = I ate a lot

 

tout / beaucoup = adverbs

→ monosyllabic adverbs (tout, très...), adverbs of manner (vite, mieux...), adverbs of quantity (peu, trop...) and adverbs of time (souvent, jamais...) are placed just before the past participles of compound tenses

J’avais trop mangé I had really eaten too much

J’ai toujours voulu cuisiner I always wanted to cook

J’ai tout détruit I destroyed everything

 

I hope this is helpful.

Bonne journée!

JimC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

Hi Alex,

This is a bit tricky.

Taking your example verbs - détruire is a transitive verb requiring an object, so to take "Vous avez tout détruit"     tout in this case will be the direct object "You have destroyed everything"

Manger can be used either transitive or intransitive so I agree with you that "J'ai tout mangé would be correct in transitive usage "I have eaten everything"

So to my mind it will depend upon just what function in the sentence "tout" is taking.

Hope this input helps?

Alan (Jim)

AlanC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

I don't think Jim's answer explains why the word order is different to a normal object pronoun. 

Maybe "tout" is just an exception that you have to learn, but perhaps it could be regarded as an adverb of quantity here, like "peu" or "beaucoup"?

Location of "tout" in "Vous avez tout détruit"

Hi, I'm having trouble understanding the way "tout" acts in sentences when being used as a pronoun. In another lesson it says that "tout" can be used as a pronoun, however in passé composé the structure is usually: "subject + object pronoun + auxillary verb + past participle", for example "Je l'ai mangé". 

My understanding is that the correct sentence would be "J'ai tout mangé", and not "Je tout ai mangé". Could someone please help me understand, is there a rule for as to why tout behaves differently than others?

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