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Peut-on utiliser « ce » dans cette phrase?

How would one use “ce qui” differently as compared to “ceux qui”, “celui qui”, etc.?

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Duplicate of french.stackexchange.com/questions/915/… (in French); on how to handle such cross-language duplicates, see this meta question –  Gilles Oct 20 '11 at 13:32
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marked as duplicate by Gilles Oct 28 '11 at 19:47

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2 Answers

« Ce » is only used for objects and sometimes for non-human living creatures (depends of the relation you have with it). It's a little bit like « it » in English. In fact, most of the times, if you would refer to something as « it », use « ce » instead of « celui », « celle », « ceux », ...

In your case, « ce qui » means « the thing that », but « ceux qui » means « those who ». It has a perfectly similar meaning, except that the subject is once « it » and once « they ».

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  • Ce qui can refer to a previous part of the sentance or the text: in a certain way, you can compare ce to the english word which in that context:

J'ai trouvé un travail, ce qui est bien.
I have found a job, which is a good thing.

  • Ce qui can also refer to something (but not somebody) for a future reference:

Ce qui se trouve sur cette table me semble bon.

For somebody, we would use celui qui (masc) / celle qui (fem) / ceux qui (plur) instead:

Ceux qui sont venus m'aider sont très gentils.
Those who came to help me are very kind.

  • We say ce monsieur, ce plombier, cet agent, ce bureau, cette table, etc, to refer to someone or something. We can then refer to it using qui by saying celui/celle/ceux qui, not ce qui:

-Ce gars est sympathique.
-De qui parles-tu ?
-Je parle de celui qui est assis sur la chaise, à côté de la table.

-This guy is really nice.
-Who are you referring to?
-I'm referring to the the guy sitting on the chair, close to the table.

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Don't omit « ce qui se trouve sur la table », « what is on the table ». –  Oltarus Oct 20 '11 at 9:31
That's absolutely right! I've edited my answer. Thanks Oltarus! –  Shlublu Oct 20 '11 at 9:35
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