I came across a sentence that gave me a slight grammar-nerd pause, and wanted to double check my intuition:

Cette bonne volonté impressionna favorablement le patron et lui fit bien augurer du succès de l'expédition.

Given that it's augurer de, I would have expected this faire causatif to read le fit bien augurer de. I've tried searching google for other examples and find many of both, le and lui, so now I'm curious which sounds more idiomatic/grammatical to a native speaker?

1 Answer 1


The only valid pronoun is lui here.

It refers to le patron, a person, and is an indirect object of the verb faire augurer (faire augurer à qui?).

La bonne volonté parut de bon augure au patron.

In le fit augurer, the pronoun le would have referred to what is "auguré" (faire augurer quoi?):

Que l'expédition soit un succès, cette bonne volonté impressionnante le fit augurer (au patron).

Here le refers to le succès de l'expédition.

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