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See also: ILS and ILs



From Vulgar Latin illi, which sounded il in Old French, to which a plural -s was added. While il was the nominative form from late Latin nom. *illi of ille, els, eus was the oblique form ("them") that had evolved from late Latin *illos, it is the ancestor of modern French eux.

In Old French, "they", being a nominative, was il from late Latin *illi, thus it didn't have the final -s, thus it was il used both for "he" and "they". The -s was added at the end of the 13th century in some regions, at the time the declension system of Old French started to collapse. As a consequence, some oïl languages in France have retained the original Old French il-form, and in some other regions, the ils-form supplanted the older one. Some dialects have even retained both forms depending on the locals.

See cognates in regional languages in France : Angevin is, Bourbonnais-Berrichon ils, Bourguignon âs, Champenois is, Franc-Comtois és, Gallo i and iz, Lorrain is, Norman i and is, Orléanais is, Picard is and i, Poitevin-Saintongeais és, Tourangeau is, Franco-Provençal ils, Occitan els (Gasconian eus), Catalan ells, Corsican egli.



ils m pl

  1. they (male or mixed group)
  2. (Quebec, informal) they (female)

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  1. indefinite genitive singular of il