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A kind of ...

LizC1Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

A kind of ...

Lesson was: cette chanteuse a un ... kind of talent. How does certain translate to a kind of. Thanks. 

Asked 4 years ago
CécileKwiziq team memberCorrect answer

For me Liz, un certain talent would translate as ‘a certain kind of’, meaning indeterminate amount of talent, but talent neverltheless.

If you say for instance :

Cette femme/ cet homme /cette maison/ ce village a un certain charme 

It means she/he/it has a certain amount of charm but not as much as using -

Beaucoup de charme

or 

très charmant/e

Hope this helps!

 

ChrisC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

Cette chanteuse a un certain talent. -- This singer has "some kind of/a certain" talent.

It is not straightforward to translate that sentence to proper English while staying true to the original French wording. The point is that certain can mean two things, depending whether it comes before or after the noun:

After the noun is easy; it simply means certain, sure.

Before the noun its effect is to make the noun a bit undefinable, uncertain. Many times the English "a kind of" works in the translation. Once you grasp what the French sentence wants to express, you then look for the best way to cast that into English.

A kind of ...

Lesson was: cette chanteuse a un ... kind of talent. How does certain translate to a kind of. Thanks. 

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