Why can "they do not have much to read" not be translated as " ils n'ont pas beaucoup à lire"? Why must it be "grand-chose" instead?

Answered! Jump to accepted answer.

David

Kwiziq community member

27 June 2018

4 replies

Why can "they do not have much to read" not be translated as " ils n'ont pas beaucoup à lire"? Why must it be "grand-chose" instead?

Google Translate allows it.

This page offers it in several examples:: https://www.collinsdictionary.com/dictionary/english-french/much

It seems they are equally valid alternatives.

This relates to:
Ne ... pas grand-chose = Not much (negation) -

Cécile

Kwiziq language super star

11 July 2018

11/07/18

Hi David,

Yes you can say " Je n'ai pas beaucoup à lire" but you are more likely to hear "Je n'ai pas grand-chose à lire".

Hope this helps!

David

Kwiziq community member

11 July 2018

11/07/18

Alright, that is good to know. However it is one of the frustrating things in using Kwiziq (and also Lingvist, but not so much on DuoLingo) that you have to learn to give back what the examiner wants, rather than other correct answers, since only one possible correct answer will be accepted.

John

Kwiziq community member

31 July 2018

31/07/18

I think the meaning is a little difference. Please let me know if I'm wrong.

"Je n'ai pas beaucoup à lire" to me means I don't have a lot of homework this week. My boss didn't ask me to go over a lot of cases. So I don't have much to read this week.

"Je n'ai pas grand-chose à lire" makes me think you walk into the doctor's office, and there are only junk magazines to read. You don't have much to read around here.

Cécile

Kwiziq language super star

4 August 2018

4/08/18

Hi John,

I think you would say " Il n'y a pas grand-chose à lire" in the case of the doctor's surgery as it is a general comment.

The difference between 'pas beaucoup' and 'pas grand-chose' is the same as 'not much' and 'hardly anything', in my opinion.

Your answer

Login to submit your answer

Don't have an account yet? Join today

Think you've got all the answers?

Test your French to the CEFR standard

find your French level »
3065questions6471answers127,510users
Let me take a look at that...