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Can you please explain which one is right and why? I feel both are right.

pouvez-vous donnez-moi votre position?

ou

pouvez-vous me donner votre position?

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  • Using the correct tags helps getting answers because some of those who can answer only watch certain tags. ancien-français (Old French) and français-classique were not relevant here.
    – None
    Commented Jun 4, 2023 at 7:50

1 Answer 1

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You want to build a sentence where donner is not used on its own but with pouvoir that acts here as an auxiliary. The rule is that the verb that pouvoir modifies is in the infinitive. So what you want is pouvoir donner where only pouvoir is conjugated (je peux donner, tu peux donner, vous pouvez donner etc.). And so when used for a request you get : Pouvez-vous donner ?

Me is the indirect object of donner and the rule is that it goes before the verb, so we have: Pouvez-vous me donner ?

Of your two proposals only this one is correct:

Pouvez-vous me donner votre position ?

Your other sentence is not correct. I expect your confusion comes from the fact that, donnez-moi on its own is a valid sentence. But having pouvoir modifies the meaning.

  • Pouvez-vous me donner votre position ? expresses a polite request.

  • Donnez-moi votre position. is a command.


More information:

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  • got it, pouvoir modifies the meaning. Thank you. Commented Jun 4, 2023 at 8:16

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