I am learning some french grammar online, I found this sentence Je vois la fille danser.. Can someone please break it down for me?

I mean what all things are used in making up this sentence and what are the noun/subject/object for this sentence?

The same question for this sentence as well J'entends les enfants chanter la chanson.

Merci d'avance!

  • 1
    Please ask only a question at a time and clarify which part of a sentence you cannot identify the role.
    – jlliagre
    Commented Jul 30, 2022 at 23:20

1 Answer 1


Both cases can be lumped into a single one. This construction is typical of the so called verbs of perception : *voir, regarder,, entendre, écouter, sentir, *, …
Following those verbs you find as object, besides nouns, clauses called "proposition subordonnée infinitive".

(Français Facile) La subordonnée infinitive, principalement accompagne des verbes de perception.

• J'entends papa crier.
• Je vois les oiseaux voler.

Ici, le verbe à l'infinitif peut changer de place

dans la phrase sans en changer le sens.
• J'entends crier papa.
• Je vois voler les oiseaux.

(Français Facile)

La proposition infinitive sert de complément d'objet aux verbes perceptifs comme « voir, entendre, écouter, sentir, regarder, etc. ».

"la fille danser" and "les enfants chanter la chanson" are the objects.

Note The inversion is not always possible ; when the infinitive verb has an object it is not.

  • J'entends chanter les enfants la chanson.
  • J'entends chanter la chanson les enfants.
  • Isn't the whole clause the object - la fille danser, les enfants chanter la chanson? Commented Aug 1, 2022 at 8:48

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