Starting a sentence with être, inversion?

AnnabelA2Kwiziq community member

Starting a sentence with être, inversion?

I was doing an Alevel french translation and encountered this. I could guess the meaning ‘24 free services are offered’ but I don’t get why the word order is like this. 

Sont proposés 24 services gratuits, dont la recharge du téléphone et une coupe de cheveux.
Asked 1 week agoInversion
CélineKwiziq team memberCorrect answer

Bonjour Annabel,

This type of sentence (“Sont proposés 24 services gratuits”) is a stylistic choice often used when advertising something in an ad in a newspaper (in the classifieds). Usually, the sentence starts with “Est / Sont + offert/s or proposé(s) ... “ or “Offre / Propose...”:

 

Sont offerts 3 verres en crystal pour 20 euros = 3 crystal glasses offered for 20 euros

Propose 4 fourchettes en argent … = Offer 4 silver spoons…

Vend voiture, bon état... = Sells car, good condition...

I hope this is helpful.

Bonne journée !

JimC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

Hi Annabel,

This only makes sense to me if it is in the passive voice.

The subject seems to be "24 services gratuits" but the verb "proposer" does not take être in the active voice.

The "object" is unknown, "Objects? are offering a number (24) of free services......"

Not sure here  --  let's see if another contributor can make more sense of it?

Bonne journée

Jim

ChrisC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

There's an English parallel that may help you get a feel for this construction:

There are 24 free services on offer. On offer are 24 free services.

The French construction with sont in the beginning has the feeling of the second version.

Starting a sentence with être, inversion?

I was doing an Alevel french translation and encountered this. I could guess the meaning ‘24 free services are offered’ but I don’t get why the word order is like this. 

Sont proposés 24 services gratuits, dont la recharge du téléphone et une coupe de cheveux.

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