Lui or leur when referring to "them"?

ThomasB1Kwiziq community member

Lui or leur when referring to "them"?

Unless I'm mistaken (which is very possible), "Cette écharpe lui va" would be a correct way to say "This scarf suits them" because it's not clear from the English sentence if "them" is plural (group of people) or singular (someone whose gender isn't known/specified), right? Or is that too much of Anglo interpretation? 

 

The correct answer was listed as "Cette écharpe leur va". 

Asked 5 months ago
CélineKwiziq team memberCorrect answer

Bonjour Thomas,

L'écharpe lui va = The scarf suits him (or her)

 -> one individual (him or her depending on the context)

L'écharpe leur va The scar suits them

 -> a group of people

Both pronouns are indirect object pronouns here: aller à [quelqu'un] (indirect object pronoun) = to suit [someone] (direct object pronoun)

Take a look here: Using lui/leur = him or her/them (French Indirect Object Pronouns)

I hope this is helpful.

Bonne journée !

JimC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

Salut Thomas,

The text, in making reference to "them" tells us that the reference is to the third person plural.

The verb form is aller à = to suit, therefore the third person plural will take an indirect object pronoun leur   -- "cette écharpe leur va".

"them" is the object of the preposition à in the expression aller à (suits them) and is indirect with respect to the verb.

Hope this helps.

Bonne continuation.

Jim

ChrisC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

If I understand your question correctly, you're wondering whether "them" is the impersonal pronoun, which can also stand for a single person of unspecified gender. In this case, you would, indeed, use lui in French. If "them" refers to a group of people, you'd use leur.

That said, in the context of this lesson and sentence, it would be an overinterpretation to assume "them" to be the impersonal gender. Hence, the correct answer uses lui.

Lui or leur when referring to "them"?

Unless I'm mistaken (which is very possible), "Cette écharpe lui va" would be a correct way to say "This scarf suits them" because it's not clear from the English sentence if "them" is plural (group of people) or singular (someone whose gender isn't known/specified), right? Or is that too much of Anglo interpretation? 

 

The correct answer was listed as "Cette écharpe leur va". 

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...