ses pieds or les pieds

PhilA2Kwiziq community member

ses pieds or les pieds

i thought with body parts it was usually 'les' which should be used.  In the suggestions during the exercise, there were options to use either. Does it depend on the verbe (trempe or plongé) ?

Asked 2 years ago
CécileKwiziq team memberCorrect answer

Hi all,

Actually, both 'les' and 'ses' are given as possible alternatives with the verbs plonger and tremper.

However, if the verb 'se tremper' had been used it would have to be 'les' -

Bébé se trempe les pieds dans l'eau

Hope this helps!

KalliopiA1Kwiziq community member
I have the impression that we use "ses" because it means "his" feet instead of "les"
ChrisC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

You are correct -- normally one uses the definite article with body parts, unless (there always is an exception) there are more than one person involved and it could lead to a misunderstanding. Or, the other exception (which doesn't apply here), the body part in question is the subject of the sentence.

In the text under question, there is the father and the baby involved. To be unambiguous, the possessive pronoun is used.

Special cases when you use mon/ma/mes/etc with parts of the body (French Possessive Adjectives)

ses pieds or les pieds

i thought with body parts it was usually 'les' which should be used.  In the suggestions during the exercise, there were options to use either. Does it depend on the verbe (trempe or plongé) ?

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