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Tom and Paula kissed themselves in front of the mirror. A problematic answer

T.C1Kwiziq community member

Tom and Paula kissed themselves in front of the mirror. A problematic answer

Q:''Tom et Paula se sont embrassés devant le miroir.'' can mean:

Both required answers in the multiple choice are:

1.Tom and Paula kissed each other in front of the mirror.

2.Tom and Paula kissed themselves in front of the mirror.

The first correct answer is the normal one, which fits the French sentence. The second one is technically correct, but the only google results of this example that I've found were linguistic works discussing how weird it was. I've asked some English native speakers (who are also familiar with French at various levels), and it is really weird. As a C2 French speaker, I also find this weird, I have never encountered the second meaning. Should we really interpret that sentence also as "Tom was kissing his own hand in front of the mirror and Paula was kissing her own hand in front of the mirror"? In an exercise on the reciprocity expressed by the reflexive verbs?

Wasn't the original intention rather to put there both "Tom and Paula kissed each other in front of the mirror." and "Tom and Paula kissed in front of the mirror"? That would illustrate perfectly the issue at hand, that the reflexive pronoun is used in French and not in the English translation.

Asked 1 year ago

Tom and Paula kissed themselves in front of the mirror. A problematic answer

Q:''Tom et Paula se sont embrassés devant le miroir.'' can mean:

Both required answers in the multiple choice are:

1.Tom and Paula kissed each other in front of the mirror.

2.Tom and Paula kissed themselves in front of the mirror.

The first correct answer is the normal one, which fits the French sentence. The second one is technically correct, but the only google results of this example that I've found were linguistic works discussing how weird it was. I've asked some English native speakers (who are also familiar with French at various levels), and it is really weird. As a C2 French speaker, I also find this weird, I have never encountered the second meaning. Should we really interpret that sentence also as "Tom was kissing his own hand in front of the mirror and Paula was kissing her own hand in front of the mirror"? In an exercise on the reciprocity expressed by the reflexive verbs?

Wasn't the original intention rather to put there both "Tom and Paula kissed each other in front of the mirror." and "Tom and Paula kissed in front of the mirror"? That would illustrate perfectly the issue at hand, that the reflexive pronoun is used in French and not in the English translation.

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