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I recently learned that to say

"I suggested to my friend that we go to the movies"

, you don't use the same sentence construction as "I want that we speak French" (ie, que + subject and verb, where the verb is in the subjunctive).

Instead, you say "J'ai proposé à ma copine d' aller au cinéma". (Literally, I suggested to my friend to go to the movies". That is, the "we" part of "that we go to the movies" is implied.

That made me wonder, what happens if the two subjects are different? That is, what if the people doing the thing you're suggesting can't be implied by who you're proposing the idea to?

For example, how do you translate

"I suggested to my friend that his kids attend my French school"

?

  • BTW, you could also say "j'ai proposé à mon amie que nous allions au cinéma" – OznOg Feb 28 '18 at 19:57
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The construction is identical to English:

J'ai proposé à mon ami(e) que ses enfants aillent à mon école française.

It's a subordinate clause, acting as object complement (COD) for the main clause:

  J'   ai proposé  à mon ami(e) que ses enfants aillent à mon école française.
-----  ----------  ------------ ----------------------------------------------
Sujet     verbe        COI                         COD
  • oh! The podcast that I learned "proposer de" from was implying that I could not use this construction. – silph Feb 26 '18 at 11:29
  • @silph Well, it depends what they said exactly. If they said that this construction is forbidden, then they're wrong. But note that I didn't write "proposer de". But in general it's perfectly fine to use a subordinate clause wherever an object (noun/...) is expected, "proposer" is not a special verb. – Najib Idrissi Feb 26 '18 at 11:31

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