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I came across this sentence:

J'en suis encore malade…

I was wondering about the structure and usage of en. Could the following sentences convey the same meaning? As a beginner, I would tend to say:

Je suis encore malade…

or

Je suis encore en malade…

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2 Answers 2

up vote 3 down vote accepted

Je suis encore malade” means “I'm still sick”. “J'en suis encore malade” means “I'm still sick due to this” or more likely “I'm still feeling uneasy about this” or “I'm still angry about this”. The adverb en stands for the reason for the illness or anger. It is always placed before the verb, you can't say “*je suis encore en malade”.

Usually, malade means sick, ill. However, in some contexts, it can refer not to a sickness but to a general feeling of uneasiness, discontent or even anger. “J'en suis encore malade” evokes that alternate meaning by default.

On m'a piqué mon vélo la semaine dernière. J'en suis encore malade.
Someone stole my bike last week. I'm still mad about it.

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So I guess the usage in the sentence «J'en suis encore contente» would be in a similar sense? –  Abhimanyu Arora Aug 20 '13 at 8:12
1  
@AbhimanyuArora Grammatically, yes. Semantically, it's weird: content is a judgement about a specific action, not a feeling. –  Gilles Aug 20 '13 at 8:16
    
it's interesting, because I thought content = happy (feeling)? –  Abhimanyu Arora Aug 20 '13 at 8:21
1  
My semantic issue is that content is too calm a feeling (more satisfaction than happiness) to feeling to disappear, and encore hints just that, that the contentment has to disappear. –  Un francophone Aug 20 '13 at 9:06
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@AbhimanyuArora content means happy in the sense of satisfied about something, it's not a feeling that could be retained or go away. “Valérie n'est pas la parce que elle en est encore malade” is correct, but usually you wouldn't use en: “Valerie is away because she's still sick”, not “… because she's still sick of it“. –  Gilles Aug 20 '13 at 10:26

En is a pronoun which replaces a complement introduced by de. For instance,

J'achète des fruits. <-> J'en achète.

It can be a complement of a verb (like in the previous example) or in some cases a noun (I think the noun itself must be direct object of the verb or an attribute linked to the subject by a copula verb).

Il a peur des chiens. <-> Il en a peur.

Je suis malade d'avoir mangé des fruits pas frais. <-> J'en suis malade.

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