Using le, la, les, du, de la, de, des

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Kim

Kwiziq community member

23 December 2017

2 replies

Using le, la, les, du, de la, de, des

I've read through the relevant lessons, but I'm still not clear on a few points: If want to say "He likes cheese" do I say "Il aime le fromage" ? What about the negative: "He doesn't like cheese" is it "Il n'aime pas le fromage" ? Why is "I adore cucumbers" "J'adore les concombres" but "I eat apples" "je mange des pommes" ? What about with "avoir peur" is it "il a peur des chiens" ? In the negative would it be "il n'a pas peur de chien". ?

Ron

Kwiziq community member

25 December 2017

25/12/17

Bonsoir Kim,


The following articles are partitive: de, du, de la, and des while these are definite articles: le, la, l' and les.
In this phrase:
On n'aime pas la musique classique. --> We dont like classical music. (we don't like any classical music)


Elle n'aime pas les bonbons. --> She doesn't like sweets. (she doesn't like any sweets)


So here is another example from a lesson:
When things are countable (dogs, cars etc.) and you want to say some, you use des.
Il y a des chiens. --> There are some dogs. or There are dogs.

Aurélie

Kwiziq language super star

29 December 2017

29/12/17

Bonjour Kim !

The difference is whether you're making a general statement or talking about "some" specific things.
Il aime le fromage is a statement about cheese in general, so you will use "le"
See https://progress.lawlessfrench.com/revision/grammar/use-le-la-l-or-les-before-nouns-when-generalising-definite-articles


In a negative sentence, le, la, l', les remain the same:
Il n'aime pas le fromage.

When you say J'adore les concombres, you're talking about cucumbers in general - you couldn't say "I love some cucumbers" here, hence the use of les.

As for "avoir peur", it's a fixed expression always followed by the preposition de (literally to have fear of), so when used with the definite article les, de + les contract into des :
Il a peur des chiens. => He's scared of (the) dogs. 
See https://progress.lawlessfrench.com/revision/grammar/avoir-peur-de-to-be-afraid-or-scared-of


In the negative, as we said above, les remains the same, so it applies to its contracted form as well:
Il n'a pas peur des chiens. 


I hope that's helpful!
À bientôt !

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