nous nous sommes brossé

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Bill

Kwiziq community member

6 July 2018

3 replies

nous nous sommes brossé

I'm confused this is a reflexive verb, so uses etre, and with a plural subject.  So why is it not "nous nous sommes brosséS"?

This relates to:
Agreeing past participle with subject's gender and number with (+ être) verbs in Le Passé Composé -

Chris

Kwiziq community member

6 July 2018

6/07/18

Hi Bill, I believe there's been a useful and detailed discussion already on this subject. You should be able to find it. 


-- Chris. 

Cécile

Kwiziq language super star

7 July 2018

7/07/18

Hi Bill,


If you scroll right down in that lesson, you will find answers to this question.


Bonne continuation!

Laura

Kwiziq language super star

9 July 2018

9/07/18

Bonjour Bill,


There is agreement with reflexive verbs only when the reflexive pronoun is the direct object.


Nous nous sommes lavés. - We washed up. The reflexive pronoun nous is the direct object: we washed ourselves -  the people doing the washing and being washed are the same.


But in nous nous sommes brossé les cheveux, the reflexive pronoun is actually the indirect object, because the direct object is les cheveux. While not grammatical, you can get a better sense of this by rewording the sentence: Nous sommes brossé les cheveux à nous. Since the direct object does not precede the verb, there is no agreement.


As this is a very tricky grammar point, Aurélie is going to address it in detail, either in this lesson or a separate one, but in the meantime you might find section 3 of this lesson helpful: Agreement with pronominal verbs

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