Indefinite Articles

Les articles indéfinis

Introduction Introduction
Indefinite articles are words that are used to indicate nouns that are not particular or identifiable by the listener. In English, the words “a” and “some” are used in the singular and plural cases respectively.

French uses indefinite articles in an analogous way to English but in the singular case changes for gender. These are fairly straightforward:

   un garçon
   a boy

   une fille
   a girl

The plural case is a little more complicated. The word des translates roughly as “some” or “any” for both masculine and feminine nouns, but in many contexts more appropriately translates as “of the”. In reality des is a contraction of de (of) and les (the), but is used as if to say “some” or “any”:

   J'ai des pommes.
   I have some apples.

If the phrase is negative, no matter if the noun is singular or plural, the word de is used:

   Je n'ai pas de pommes.
   I don’t have any apples.
MasculineFeminine
Singular
Play un
a
Play une
a
Plural
Play des
some
Play de
some any a
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