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French 4

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archiewilkie
Posts: 0
Ottawa, ON
Canada
Registered:
Aug 2, 2011
May 3, 2017 at 10:55am

I am having a bit of a problem with reflexive verbs. For example: Why is going to bed (se coucher) reflexive whereas going to sleep (dormir) is not?

andy@fluenz
Posts: 0
France
United States
Registered:
Feb 6, 2011
May 3, 2017 at 3:09pm

The reflexive pronoun agrees with the subject pronoun. Lots of verbs can be used as reflexive or non reflexive verbs:Think of it as tucking yourself in. You are preforming the act to yourself, just like brushing your teeth or combing your hair. Going to sleep is also reflexive if you use the verb "s’endormir". "Je m'endors" which is the act of falling asleep. If you are sleeping it's not reflexive. Waking up is also reflexive " Je me lève"

Fabrice
Posts: 0
San Diego, CA
United States
Registered:
Sep 17, 2012
May 4, 2017 at 6:18pm

It's "Je m'endors" not "Je me dors" :)

archiewilkie
Posts: 0
Ottawa, ON
Canada
Registered:
Aug 2, 2011
May 4, 2017 at 8:54pm

But on the flash cards the correct usage is Elle dort or il va dormir -- not reflexive. Or . "Je me suis couchée tôt et j’ai beaucoup dormi."

andy@fluenz
Posts: 0
France
United States
Registered:
Feb 6, 2011
May 5, 2017 at 11:12am

Sorry, Je m'endors—auto correct on phone.

archiewilkie
Posts: 0
Ottawa, ON
Canada
Registered:
Aug 2, 2011
May 5, 2017 at 11:19am

I don't want to nit-pick, but I do find it confusing. What about: Il est fatigue as distinct from Il s’est repose? And, the flash cards (French 4) use dormer, not s'endormir,

Emilie Poyet
Posts: 0
Barcelona, Catalunya
United States
Registered:
Dec 1, 2010
May 5, 2017 at 1:38pm

I understand your confusion archiewilkie, the truth is that there's no definite rule as to why a verb is reflexive and another one isn't from the point of view of English, so I think in this case it's a matter of learning exactly what each verb means, here's a little list that I hope might help you retain them:
- Se coucher = To go to bed OR To lie down (Elle se couche = She's going to bed OR She's lying down)
- S'endormir = To fall asleep (Elle s'endort = She's falling asleep)
- Dormir = To sleep (Elle dort = She's sleeping)

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