Discuss and learn French: French vocabulary, French grammar, French culture etc.
Basically, ils tends to translate "they" because it refers to a plural (masculine) noun.
There are surely a handful of cases where it would end up being translated as "it" in English, because occasionally a French noun that is plural can be singular in English. So for example, the slightly bizarre word ahrres ("deposit") is plural in French but would tend to be singular in English.
It's not such a common case, though. You can basically think of ils as meaning "they".
Hi Neil, I thought "ahrres" means " an advance" in english, like earnest money in legal term. Most hotels or Resort places want you to pay " an advance" (ahrres if that is correct) in case you don't turn up, they often do this during the peak seasons, so they don't lose money when you don't turn up to check in. You lose your (ahrres ) money if you don't turn up by certain time for check in and they give your room to somebody else.
And I was told by a french lady that "la caution" is a deposit. She said when you check in hotel they want you to pay a deposit and it's called "La caution" I hope I am right.
I don't know the exact translations of both "caution" and "ahrres" but if it can help :
"arrhes" is indeed a amount of money you give in advance when you make a reservation somewhere (Wikipedia translates it by "Down payment");
"caution" is money that you give when you rent or borrow something as a guarantee, and that is given back to you at the end
" If what is said is not what it meant then what should be done remain undone" a famous scholar said this. He said language must be clear and precise.
George Bernard Shaw was very subtle when he said " A dance is a vertical expression of a desire for a horizontal expression ". GB Shaw said many witty and funny things.
An Asian guy went to an Ozzie (australian) money changer and he got a little less than what he got yesterday so he asked the money changer why he was getting less than yesterday.
The Ozzie guy with a heavy ozzie accent said "fluctuation" but the asian guy heard, "fuck you asian" and he said "fuck you too". I thought this joke was funny.
So careful with your accent ok?
@yong -- yes, this is basically what "arrhes" and "caution" mean, but "deposit" can refer to either case in English.
So verser des arrhes basically means to pay some amount of money to secure a contract (e.g. a hotel booking as you say, but essentially any other similar situation).
And a caution, also called a "security deposit" in English, would be the money you pay against damages etc when renting a flat, gîte etc, and which you would ordinarily be paid back at the end of your stay/contract. This arrangement is more common in a gîte rental situation than at a hotel (where they just swipe your credit card at the start of the stay and the card is presumably authorised to take whatevr money if you break the chandeliers etc).