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Cases where both can be used?

Arash

Kwiziq community member

29 April 2017

1 reply

Cases where both can be used?

Elle n'attend pas grand-chose de lui. Elle ne s'attend pas à grand-chose de lui. Are both above phrases correct? If yes, do they mean differently? She doesn't expect much of him.

This relates to:
Attendre quelqu'un vs s'attendre à quelque chose = to wait vs to expect -

Aurélie

Kwiziq language super star

1 May 2017

1/05/17

Bonjour Arash !

That's an interesting case.
Both these sentences are correct, but their meanings are quite different, though tricky to explain :)
"Elle n'attend pas grand-chose de lui." would actually be the preferred way to say "She doesn't expect much from him." in French. That's the one we would use colloquially, as a statement.

As for "Elle ne s'attend pas à grand-chose de lui.", it feels like she is in a *tense* state of expectancy, like his action is imminent... It's really hard to explain, but it feels off to my French ears, and we would just not use this structure at all.

I hope that's helpful!
À bientôt !

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