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In french we use “son altesse” and “son altesse royale” as a honor title to speak about a royal family. I was wondering what is the plural of that title? If I was to design two or three personns that way, would I say “ses altesses” or “leurs altesses”? Who or what is the “son” refering to in “son altesse?

  • I think leurs altesse fits better, but it is hard to say since it is no more used nowadays... son must be referring to the title of the person you are speaking of... as le titre d'altesse de XXX, raccourcit en son altesse XXX. But I'm not historian, so I can't affirm it. Just a personnal opinion based on experience. – Random May 28 '15 at 15:56
  • @Random thank you for your note. I am currently living in a kingdom, so I often hear 'son altesse' and heard some people using the plural a few times, but I am not sure what is the right way...thanks. – alainlompo May 28 '15 at 16:02
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    With regard to your second question, here’s a discussion of the «nous royal», which touches briefly on the extension of the concept to other pronouns (paragraph 4). It doesn’t address the “son” directly, but it could be that the alternatives:1) “mon/mes altesse/s would put too much “undeserved” importance on the speaker (& away from his majesty); & 2) “le/les altesse(s) would be treating him/her/them as if they were common, albeit definite, articles. Anyway I think the “votre/vos/son/leur/s royals” is related somehow to the “nous royal.” – Papa Poule May 28 '15 at 17:54
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    @PapaPoule thank you: that's very interesting, I do think also that it is related to the "nous royal" – alainlompo May 28 '15 at 23:01
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"Leurs Altesses" avec les deux majuscules Aussi bien en France qu'en Belgique.

Une simple recherche sur Google livre renvoie 74900 retours pour "Leurs altesses" et 500 pour "ses altesses".

Une autre référence, le site de L'Élysée, une lettre officielle de François Hollande adressée "à Leurs Altesses Royales" le Duc et la Duchesse de Cambridge .

À noter qu'on commence par le "duc" avant la "duchesse".

Par contre quand on s'adresse à eux directement, c'est "vos", par exemple:

"Je prie Vos Altesses Royales d'agréer l'expression bla, bla. "

  • merci, ta réponse est parfaite! – alainlompo May 28 '15 at 16:22

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