I was watching a TV series and I came across this sentence in the transcription which I don't quite understand. Not sure if it's definitely correct since with transcriptions they sometimes make mistakes but the sentence as it is at least matches the sound of what is actually said in the programme.

Tes s'il te plait semblent avoir perdu leur emprise sur moi.

It seems to be plural but it's just one woman talking to one man. Not sure what exactly it means in any case since it's "Tes" (or perhaps it's wrong and should be "T'es"?) but they're using "semblent" and then "leur".


2 Answers 2


Tes « s'il te plaît » semblent avoir perdu leur emprise sur moi.


Your pleases seem to have lost their grip/influence on me.


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Jim Harrison, Grand Maître , 2014

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Yassin Adnan, Hot Maroc, 2020

  • Ok I see now. That's rather strange since in French plural words always get an 'S' on the end and so do half the other words in the sentence for that matter, so it's odd here that 's'il-te-plait' can't have an 'S' on the end...that's what threw me off.
    – Hasen
    Oct 2, 2021 at 13:34
  • 2
    Yes, that's one of the few cases where French doesn't mark the plural while English does, another one is family names: "the Bidens" vs les Macron. –
    – jlliagre
    Oct 2, 2021 at 16:40
  • I actually tried to produce an edit where the "pleases" had quotation marks and/or punctuation... No way to make it look good. Your "please"s, your "pleases", your "Please!"s... Maybe it's for the best that some languages drop the plural marker :p
    – Luke Sawczak
    Oct 2, 2021 at 17:43
  • @LukeSawczak What about italics?
    – jlliagre
    Oct 2, 2021 at 19:08
  • @jlliagre Not bad. There's still an unresolvable dilemma: italicized "s" even though the plural isn't part of the utterance, or roman "s" and have it look jarring? I think the italicized "s" is probably the lesser of all evils.
    – Luke Sawczak
    Oct 2, 2021 at 20:23

Supposing that the part "semblent avoir perdu leur emprise sur moi" is correct, then what is missing is a subject for "semblent avoir perdu"; since this is the third person plural form, this subject has to be either a plural noun or a plural third person subject pronoun (ils, elles).

  • Ils/elles semblent avoir perdu leur emprise sur moi.

Neither "Tes" nor "t'es" is possible.

Ajustment of the answer after the change made in the question by user Hansen

As I said avove there has to be a plural pronoun or noun, which should rather be called "noun group" ("noun" is to too precise in this context). With the phrase "s'il te plait" occurring between "Tes" and the verb, all becomes clear; "Tes" is now justified. "S'il te plait" is being nominalized, treated as a noun, so to speak, and it refers to instances of using the phrase by the person spoken to in their addressing the person who is speaking. It is as in English when you'd say for instance "Your good mornings are not what they used to be, you are not as kind.". So, the person talking is saying that his/her use of "s'il te plait"'s are not as successful as they used to be in the way of getting something from him/her, in the way of pleasing him/her.

  • Ils doesn't start with a T so there's no way that she said that. Like I said in the question, the words in the sentence definitely match what she says as far as the actual audio is concerned. I just checked it at 50% speed and she definitely says T'es or Tes. She actually says "Tes s'il te plait semblent avoir perdu leur emprise sur moi." but I removed the "s'il te plait" for simplicity here. You should've posted a comment rather than an answer since your answer is not correct.
    – Hasen
    Oct 2, 2021 at 8:45
  • @Hasen What is not correct is your removal of "s'il te plait", and comment space is not for answers.
    – LPH
    Oct 2, 2021 at 9:01
  • 1
    Your answer shows you did not read the part where I said the sound matches the sentence sonically so obviously Ils would not be possible. Thus a comment would be better here to first confirm. You say the s'il te plait is important so you could adjust your answer now. Comment space is for clarification before answering so as to now answer incorrectly.
    – Hasen
    Oct 2, 2021 at 9:06
  • @Hasen All right!
    – LPH
    Oct 2, 2021 at 9:07
  • I've edited my question so it shows the correct sentence with s'il te plait included.
    – Hasen
    Oct 2, 2021 at 9:11

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