I’m reading this line:

Comme les Français, nous le savons, respectent le passé, l'âge et la tradition…

May I ask what does the “le” in “nous le savons” mean? And how come there is a “respectent” after it? There’s not a third person plural as the subject…

1 Answer 1


"Le" is simply a pronoun (pronouns); what it is used in replacement of is something that comes (essentially) after (the unit being replaced comes before the pronoun but occasionally after); that unit is "les Français … respectent le passé, l'âge et la tradition ".

"Respectent" has "les Français" for subject; "nous le savons" is what you call "une incise".

  • Comme les Français respectent le passé, l'âge et la tradition, nous le savons,… (equivalent formulation)

  • Elle ne sait pas ça ; je te le rappelle, ne l'oublie pas. (before; unit being replaced by "le" and "l": "elle ne sait pas ça")

  • De la façon dont elle le conçoit, le problème n'est pas abordable. (after; "le" replaces "problème")

  • While LPH is absolutely right, in case you find his answer too complex to grasp, think of "le" here as "it". +++++++ Since the French, we know [it], honor the past, age and tradition, [...] Nov 14, 2022 at 5:59

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