Query regarding ceci/cela/ça

ShreyA1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

Query regarding ceci/cela/ça

Bonjour Madame Cécile !

In a quiz, I was given the following sentences->

1. Ils sont riches. J'ai lu ________ quelque part. 

(They're wealthy. I read that somewhere.)

Now, the correct answer was cela/ça. Though I got it right but I would like to ask why “ceci” is inappropriate.

2. Elle pourra partir plus tôt : je lui ai promis ________. (She will be able to leave earlier: I promised her that.)

Here, too I would question whether “ceci” is acceptable or not.

3. ________  sera prévu. (It will be taken care of. )

The accurate answer is “Ce” but why can’t one use “Ça/Ceci/Cela” .

Merci beaucoup pour votre aide.

Je vous souhaite une bonne journée.

Asked 1 year ago
CécileKwiziq team memberCorrect answer

Hi Shrey,

This (ceci) and that (cela/ça) have an element of distance just as 'here' (ici) and 'there' ()  but in temporal terms, so in No1 & No 2 of your examples I would have used, 

ça

If No 3  was in a different tense it would be -

C'est prévu ----> C'était prévu -----> Ce sera prévu ( using 'ce')

but you would use ça for the following -

'Ça/Cela a été prévu' for the sake of euphony.

But interesting question, nevertheless!

 

 

ShreyA1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

Bonjour Madame Cécile !

Je voudrais vous remercier pour votre réponse.

I would just like to know what exactly do you mean by “temporal terms” which brings a distinction between ‘ceci’ and ‘cela’. 

I request you to explain this with two or three examples which would surely enhance my learning.

ShreyA1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

Bonjour Madame Cécile ! 

Sorry for posting another follow-up to my query but I only desire perfection which I have been acquiring since a long time from teachers at Kwiziq and hence asking a related question.

These two sentences are from the lesson-

1.L'environnement est une cause importante. Je comprends cela.

This sentence highlights the fact that the environment is an important cause. The speaker then confirms by mentioning that he is understanding the above said line. This depicts a  sense of ‘distance’ between the thoughts of the speaker.

2.Ceci est essentiel donc soyez attentifs à la leçon.

This sentence highlights that the concept that the professor is teaching at the very moment is crucial and hence one must draw attention towards the lesson.

Madame, is my understanding correct as per what you were trying to explain ?

Merci beaucoup et À bientôt !

CécileKwiziq team member

Sorry, Shrey, I meant to come back to you earlier ...

To answer your first query, what I meant is that just as in English if you have 'this' and 'that' , 'ceci' will always be the first example and 'cela' the second and in relative distance in space or time, 'ceci' will be nearer than 'cela'.

Having said that ( or should it be this!), when they are used on their own the distinction is much more vague just as in English and there will be some exceptions to this rule.

The interpretation of your examples sound correct to me...

Bonne continuation!

ShreyA1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor
Bonjour Madame Cécile !

I am posting a follow-up to my question as I wasn’t convinced with the opinions in the following link and thought it would be best to consult my mentor than to assume what is correct-

https://kwiziq.learnfrenchwithalexa.com/questions/view/there-seems-to-be-a-mistake-in-this-lesson

In your previous response you mentioned ->

Just as in English if you have 'this' and 'that' , 'ceci' will always be the first example and 'cela' the second and in relative distance in space or time, 'ceci' will be nearer than 'cela'.

Now, in the example which is quite frequently put up on the forum-

Faire mes devoirs ou dormir, je préfère ceci plutôt que cela.

Doing my homework or sleeping, I prefer this rather than that.

Here, ceci should be the first one “faire les devoirs” and cela, the second one “dormir” according to your explanation which mentions-

Ceci-first example  

Cela-second example 

I just reviewed the lesson and went through the updates and this example has been put up in a different way against my understanding.

Have I misinterpreted something which you wanted me to understand the other way ?

Merci encore et Je vous souhaite une bonne journée!

CécileKwiziq team member

Hi Shrey ,

In the case of ceci/cela meaning the former/latter what Aurélie says is that the word used nearest to the verb will be replaced by 'ceci' and the furthest by 'cela', so in this example dormir is 'ceci' and 'faire mes devoirs' is cela .

I know it is a bit odd but you would probably just say:

Je préfère dormir que faire mes devoirs 

or 

Je préfère dormir à faire mes devoirs

Hope that helps!

JamesonC1Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

Hi Shrey! Late to the party but my two cents worth.. based on the lesson contents as of June 10/2020.

Question #1 I find very simple if you view the "Ils sont riches." as a 'notion'; then it has already been introduced and therefore you cannot use 'ceci'!!!..which introduces the notion.

Question #2 is identical!

The example "that being said" is very much along this line of a previously mentioned notion.

Question #3:

Ce is the most commonly used answer probably because 'ce' is the demonstrative pronoun most often used with 'etre'...especially as a subject of the sentence. Ca is the recommended 'common usage pronoun' with other verbs.

However I think (and I am risking showing my folly..

Ceci could have been used for emphasis and formality... especially so if the response "this will be take care of" refers to a 'just' propped up problem.

Cela could also have been used (again for emphasis/formality) especially if the response was to a formally existing problem.

Note that ceci and cela are really 'ce' dressed up in tuxedos,  commanding of attention.

Ca, in my humble opinion, would be the LEAST appropriate because ca is best used with verbs other than 'etre' and its weakest usage is as a subject pronoun except maybe with the verb 'FAIRE'.

With trembling fingers I submit this 2 cents worth of language advice.

AnesuA1Kwiziq community member

1.Cela

2.Cela

3.Ceci

Query regarding ceci/cela/ça

Bonjour Madame Cécile !

In a quiz, I was given the following sentences->

1. Ils sont riches. J'ai lu ________ quelque part. 

(They're wealthy. I read that somewhere.)

Now, the correct answer was cela/ça. Though I got it right but I would like to ask why “ceci” is inappropriate.

2. Elle pourra partir plus tôt : je lui ai promis ________. (She will be able to leave earlier: I promised her that.)

Here, too I would question whether “ceci” is acceptable or not.

3. ________  sera prévu. (It will be taken care of. )

The accurate answer is “Ce” but why can’t one use “Ça/Ceci/Cela” .

Merci beaucoup pour votre aide.

Je vous souhaite une bonne journée.

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