French Relative Pronoun no One Understands: DONT

french relative pronoun dont (1)

Many students have stumbled upon the peculiar French relative pronoun “dont”. It behaves a bit differently than the relative pronouns qui and que, and it requires more background knowledge than other relative pronouns.

Keep on reading to go past your beginner’s mistakes.

French Relative Pronouns

There are four relative pronouns in French:
  • Qui 
  • Que 
  • Dont 
If you want to learn more, see How to connect two sentences in French : Relative Pronoun

Relative Pronoun – DONT

Dont is a relative pronoun that shows possession and replaces an object introduced with the preposition “de”. It replaces the preposition de + a person/thing. Many French students make mistakes because using the pronoun Dont, requires you to know which verbs go with the preposition “de”.

Verbs that can be used with the relative pronoun dont are (parler de, se méfier de, avoir besoin de, être content de, etc.). As you can see, they all require a preposition “de” afterward.

Voici la fille dont je t’ai parlé.

Here’s the girl I’ve been talking about.

There are several possible translations for dont, depending on the context:

  • from which
  • from whom
  • including
  • of which
  • of whom
  • that
  • whose
  • with

As we know, the preposition de expresses the possession, and dont keeps conveying the same meaning.

In the case

  • the thing possessed is a person, dont is equivalent to”whose”
  • the thing possessed is inanimate, the best translation is often “with.”

Je connais un homme. La femme de cet homme est enseignante. Je connais un homme dont la femme est enseignante.

I know a man. This man’s wife is a teacher. I know a man whose wife is a teacher.

Je cherche une maison. La porte de la maison est verte. Je cherche la maison dont la porte est green.

I’m looking for a house. The house’s door is green. I’m looking for a house with a green door.

Dont has the function of an object in a relative clause.

Often Confused Couple : Dont or Où

There are two big differences between these relative pronouns. So, let’s examine them.

Dont suggests possession, while  indicates the place.

J’ai beaucoup d’amis. Deux de mes amis sont poètes. J’ai beaucoup d’amis, dont deux artistes

I have a lot of friends. Two of my friends are poets. I have a lot of friends, two of whom are artists.

Je me rappelle le jour où nouse se sommes rencontrés pour la première fois.

I remember the day (when) we met for the first time.

The next big difference is that dont refers to both persons or things, while  refers to where, when, which, or that,  depending on how it is used.

Voici la maison où je suis né.

Here’s the house where l was born.

Understanding French Pronoun DONT

By the end of this article, you figured out the relative pronoun dont, actually isn’t that difficult at all. All that you need to know is that :

  • it represents possession
  • it replaces the verb + preposition de

It’s now your turn to start using dont with confidence.

Why don’t you test your knowledge with an easy exercise?

Related Posts

AP Spanish Language Practice

Looking to improve your Spanish skills to take your AP exam? Getting the highest score is just a click away! Find the best AP Spanish

English vs Spanish Language

Are you an English speaker and looking to learn Spanish? As siblings descended from Romance languages, they naturally share similarities. Check them out in our

French and Spanish Language Comparison

Do you wanna know how the two most passionate languages are similar? Let’s talk about the differences and similarities between these romance languages! Welcome to

When did Kobe Learn Spanish

Loving father, ideal husband, amazing man, successful Lakers player, businessman, and he also speaks Spanish! Do you know who he is? How could he do

ALTA Spanish Language Test Questions

Are you taking your ALTA language exam? Don’t let it catch you off guard. Check out the ALTA Spanish Language Test Questions for your high

I Hate the Spanish Language

Do you think Spanish is a beautiful and linguistically rich language? What about the negative opinions that hinder your choice to learn it as a

Get a Certificate in French Language

If you ask yourself why should you take the certification course in French, we’ll help you decide in which cases is useful and in which

What does “Doux” mean in French?

Discover the meaning of “doux” in French and its various uses. Learn how to use this common word in everyday conversation and improve your French

Need in French: Avoir Besoin

It’s in the human need to have needs, right? Learning how to express your needs in French is by all means an important step in

German riddles

Looking for some fun ways to practice your German language skills? Check out our collection of German riddles and tongue twisters! Test your wit and

Cheers in French: 8 happy ways to say it

Celebrate in French style! This blog showcases 8 happy ways to say “cheers” in French, perfect for impressing your French-speaking friends. Santé! How to say

Different Ways to Use Fois in French

Fois is a very common French word, used in different contexts. English speakers oftentimes confuse it with the word “temps”. In this lesson, you’ll learn

Funniest French jokes

In this article, we will share some of the funniest French jokes  that will have you laughing out loud. Let’s get started! Funniest French jokes

Funniest Spanish jokes

¡Hola! You’re in for a treat if you love to laugh and speak Spanish. We’ve compiled a list of the funniest Spanish jokes that will

Jokes about French

In this article, we’ll explore the humorous side of French culture through a collection of jokes about French. Let’s get started! Jokes about French Welcome

News in French: free resources

In this article, we will explore a variety of websites, podcasts, TV channels, and other resources that you can use to stay informed about news

Short German jokes

Laugh your way through language learning with our collection of short German jokes. Discover the funniest puns, one-liners, and more in our guide! German humor

The basic Spanish hand gestures

In this blog post, we will explore the most important Spanish hand gestures, and their meanings, providing a guide to effectively communicate with Spanish speakers

Beautiful French words with meaning

Discover the beauty of the French language by learning its meanings. Learn the beautiful French words and its meaning. Beautiful French words A lot of

How do you say “good” in French?

Learn how to say “good” in French with our easy guide. Perfect for beginners and travelers looking to improve their language skills. “Good” in French

How to say “Cat” in French

How to say cat in French? What’s the word for a kitten in French? Learn more about the basic terminologies of our favorite fur pet

Learn French with PDF resources

Do you know that you can learn French with PDF resources? In this article, we will explore the advantages of using PDF resources to learn

Funny French jokes

Welcome to our article on Funny French jokes! Are you ready to simultaneously laugh and learn a little bit about French culture? French humor can

Funny German jokes

Welcome to our article on Funny German jokes! Get ready to chuckle at some of the funniest German jokes. German jokes Germany has a rich

Quotes in France by famous people

In this article, we will explore some of the most memorable and inspiring quotes in France from French people that have been passed down through

Quotes in Spain by famous people

In today’s post, you’ll learn some famous quotes in Spain by famous people. Quotes in Spain Spain has a rich cultural history and has produced

Best German proverbs

This article will explore some of the most popular German proverbs and delve into their meanings and origins. Check this out! German proverbs German proverbs

French Riddles

Learning some French riddles and playing with a French-speaking friend are great ways to practice if you know a little French. French riddles A good

How to translate Good Evening in French

Welcome to our article on translating “Good Evening” into French! Suppose you’re planning a trip to a French-speaking country or want to impress your friends

Some facts about the French mafia

Let’s discover some facts about the French mafia. facts about the French mafia The French Mafia is one of the world’s most dangerous criminal organizations.

Some facts about the Spanish mafia

Let’s discover some facts about the Spanish mafia. Facts about the Spanish mafia The Spanish mafia is one of the most active and widespread criminal

Some facts about the German mafia

Let’s discover some facts about the German mafia.  Facts about the German mafia The German Mafia (; Maffia; from Italian mafiusi, “clan”) is a criminal