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Adjectives after personne, rien, tout le monde, quelqu'un are always masculine

Look at these four cases:

Rien n'est gratuit
Nothing is free

Personne n'est heureux.
No-one is happy.

Tout le monde est joli.
Everyone is pretty.

Quelqu'un est petit.
Someone is small.

Notice that adjectives (describing words) following rien (nothing), personne (nobody), tout le monde (everybody), quelqu'un (someone), are always in the masculine form, even if what they describe is feminine.

BUT Une personne is feminine, so Une personne est heureuse.

 

 

Learn more about these related French grammar topics

Examples and resources

personne


Personne n'est heureux.
No-one is happy.


quelqu'un


Quelqu'un est petit.
Someone is small.


rien


Rien n'est gratuit
Nothing is free


tout le monde


Tout le monde est joli.
Everyone is pretty.


Q&A

Jennifer

Kwiziq community member

25 February 2018

2 replies

tout le monde est nouveau? Why not nouvel

I seem to vaguely remember that there are two ways of talking about new, depending on how new the object is. Here I used nouvel but the correct answer was nouvel? Can anyone enlighten me?

Gruff

Kwiziq language super star

25 February 2018

25/02/18

Hi Jennifer, nouvel is used for the masculine form only when it's followed by a vowel or mute h.


More info here:
https://progress.lawlessfrench.com/revision/grammar/beau-nouveau-vieux-fou-mou-two-masculine-and-one-feminine-form


 


 

Chris

Kwiziq community member

25 February 2018

25/02/18

As Gruff said, "nouvel" is used for the male form when it starts with a vowel or silent h. When you talk about the two forms of "new" you probably mean nouveau/nouvelle vs. neuf/neuve. 


"Ma nouvelle voiture" is a car that is new to you but not newly made. 


"Ma voiture neuve" is a car hot off the assembly line. 


-- Chris (not a native speaker). 

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