All Questions

1
vote
1answer
57 views

Searching for French noun with very specific criteria [closed]

I am writing a book of humor and I would be happy to send a free copy to the person who sends the best response. I am looking for a French feminine noun that has one acute accent. The word cannot ...
1
vote
1answer
48 views

«Être cache»? Qu’est-ce que ça veut dire?

Entendu ici à 2:39 et après, à propos de la langue des signes des sourds-muets : — Est-ce qu’elle est plus cache cette langue ? — Ah oui ils sont très directs, très caches, ...
2
votes
4answers
115 views

“Faire la bise” in France vs hugging in America

I am taking an online course (from CMU online learning initiative here... it's pretty good so far). In a video, a girl comes into scene where a few people are sitting around a table. She seems ...
2
votes
4answers
124 views

« Qu'elle crève ! » qu'est-ce que ça veut dire ?

Dans le film La Famille Bélier, une fille distribue des tracts, mais elle n’en donne pas à la figurante. L’héroïne dit « Qu'elle crève ! » Qu'est-ce que ça veut dire ?
5
votes
3answers
155 views

Why is subjunctive being used here

I came across the following ...ses yeux verts pétillants, bien que, pour l'instant, ils soient rouges et larmoyants I do not understand why the second part is in the subjunctive tense. My ...
3
votes
2answers
64 views

Comment appele-t-on une source issue d'un livre ?

Dans le but d'un projet, je dois lister mes sources. Ainsi, les sources issues d'internet pourra avoir comme nom : sources internet. Mais, comment appelle-t-on les sources issus d'un livre ? J'ai ...
1
vote
2answers
64 views

Is “des” not needed after “de”?

In the following sentence: Tu sais combien de secondes ça fait? I thought "des" is needed before plural nouns (secondes), so at first I thought the following is correct: Tu sais combien de des ...
6
votes
1answer
59 views

Comment savoir s'il faut utiliser “à + pronom tonique” ou “le pronom COI”

Quelqu'un pourrait-il m'expliquer pourquoi dit on: Je fais appel à lui. et non : *Je lui fais appel. Également, pourquoi : Je lui passe un coup de fil. et non : *Je passe un coup ...
2
votes
1answer
35 views

“Il me l'a promis” ou “Il m'en a promis” ?

Je ne comprends pas pourquoi est-ce qu'on emploie le pronom "le" dans cette phrase : Il viendra pour les 80 ans de sa grand-mère ; il me l’a promis. Est-il possible d'utiliser "en" au lieu de "le" ...
3
votes
2answers
42 views

The word “continuum” and its usage in French (e.g. la mécanique du continuum)

Google translates Mechanics of continua Continuum Mechanics as Mécanique du continua (faulty as it should be des continua but it is not the point considered here) Mécanique du ...
1
vote
3answers
154 views

Express “clockwise and anticlockwise direction”

Which way is better to express clockwise/anticlockwise direction? E.g. As seen against the background stars, the Earth rotates in a clockwise direction. Comme on le voit sur les étoiles à l'...
1
vote
1answer
119 views

Why not class “ce” as a personal pronoun?

The c’est / il est distinction is well covered in learning materials, and I understand that a distinction applies in several contexts. But if we take one of those contexts, Robert, il est médecin, ...
3
votes
4answers
198 views

How do you say love phrases in French?

I am getting a custom necklace and want the back to say something like “madly in love” or “falling even more in love” or something to that regard. Can someone give me some French (short) phrases that ...
2
votes
1answer
134 views

Le « casque de réalité virtuelle » etc. : virtuellement un casque ?

À gauche, un casque de réalité virtuelle (VR Headset) ; au centre, un masque de plongée ; à droite, une lunette de sécurité... On a bien des termes comme casque VR/de réalité virtuelle ou de réalité ...
5
votes
2answers
145 views

Spelling of “je” and “ge” as “ze”

The question: Why is "Je" sometimes written as "Ze" (and other words with similar sounds) The context: Recently, I have been reading a graphic novel aimed at kids in which a kitten gets lost and is ...
0
votes
1answer
48 views

Translation of short lyrics [closed]

There is a French song by Sebastien Tellier titled 'L'amour et la violence'. I'd really like to know what it means and I'm looking for someone kind enough to do a translation of that as I don't speak ...
6
votes
4answers
554 views

Why is “ayant” the participle of “avoir”, instead of “avant”?

It looks pretty intuitive to me if the participle of avoir is avant, but it's actually ayant. What is the story behind this V vs Y difference?
2
votes
2answers
47 views

What's the meaning of “Fait en deux exemplaires originaux à” ?

I'm filling up a non-disclosure agreement and got the below statement. What's the meaning of "Fait en deux exemplaires originaux à": ..... Le:...... The English translation is also given, but it's ...
0
votes
1answer
42 views

When to use “à” and “de” after adjective (e.g. impossible, difficile)? [duplicate]

I found the following sentences: Il est impossible de penser à cela. Difficile à dire. C'est difficile de choisir. Ces choses sont impossibles à comprendre. These sentences are not ...
2
votes
3answers
73 views

History behind the formation of “passé simple”

At school, when we first learned about "le passé simple" my teacher would tell us that most of the verbs in the third group can be formed by taking the root from "le participe passé", e.g. ...
-4
votes
3answers
99 views

C'est pas très beau le passé simple!

Je trouve que ce n'est pas très beau de dire et même de lire Nous leur donnâmes un verre d'eau. Ce n'est plus du tout employé aujourd'hui ; c'est désuet. Par quoi pourrait-on remplacer cette ...
2
votes
6answers
125 views

Comment exprimer « to shame its inadequacy » ?

Voici un extrait de film (avertissement : divulgâcheur) : [...] Three: in certain extreme situations, the law is inadequate. In order to shame its inadequacy, it is necessary to act outside the ...
4
votes
2answers
59 views

“Il vient.” vs “Il s'en vient”

Consider the two sentences: Il vient. vs Il s'en vient. As far as I can tell, both are translated to English as He is coming/approaching. so I am guessing that the difference is a subtlety that can ...
2
votes
2answers
87 views

Siblings in French

In English siblings, in German Geschwister. To the best of my knowledge, French does not have a single word but uses les frères et sœurs construction. So does French lack indeed a single word for ...
4
votes
5answers
123 views

Les parents (as the English relatives)

Can we use, in colloquial French, les parents when we are talking about family members (i.e. as like the English word relatives)? Should we use les parents proches?
2
votes
2answers
114 views

Google Translate: C'est vs. Ç'est

Google Translate keeps correcting my inputs any time I attempt to translate a sentence containing «c'est» by suggesting I put «ç'est» instead. Is this contraction even correct (because I've been ...
1
vote
1answer
52 views

Translation of “to the best of the author's knowledge”

As far as I know to the best of my knowledge is interpreted by pour autant que je sache For to the best of the author's knowledge should I use pour autant que l'auteur sache or is it ...
1
vote
3answers
26 views

Interpretation of “(see) references therein”

Doe et al. collected in their recent review a large number of earlier work (see Doe, 2012 and references therein). J'ai vu (linguee.fr et ailleurs) plusieurs façons d'interpréter references therein)...
7
votes
2answers
93 views

Why is “un”/“une” the only gendered number?

"Une femme" and "Un homme", but not "Deuce femmes" and "Deux hommes"? Is there a reason that the number one receives special treatment?
3
votes
3answers
412 views

What is a natural way to say 'People will resent them all the more'?

I participated in a group discussion with French people and I got stuck for words when I wanted to say 'People will resent them all the more' like below. 'If they think they can improve the situation ...
0
votes
2answers
37 views

digne jusqu’à la dureté, pur jusqu’à la sauvagerie

Ça veut dire quoi, être digne jusqu’à la dureté, pur jusqu’à la sauvagerie. Source: Les misérables Tome III
1
vote
2answers
67 views

Does the negative interrogative “Haven't you noticed that …” correspond to the affirmative “Tu remarqueras que …” in French?

Tu remarqueras qu'il ne nous a même pas donné son nom. C'est normal d'être prudent. I just heard my girlfriend say this, and I found the use of the future tense "remarqueras" interesting. What she ...
1
vote
1answer
40 views

Why doesn't the 1st plural (nous) form of passé simple end in -ons?

I noticed that the nous form of verbs always ends in -ons. For example, nous allons/allions/irons/allions/allassions/irions. However, the passé simple tense of verbs seems to always end in -mes (with ...
4
votes
2answers
210 views

Reflexive verb with avoir

I came across an expression "je m'ai engagé" and I want to know in what case(s) (if any), can avoir be used as auxiliary with reflexive verbs. Or this is probably a fixed expression?
3
votes
3answers
61 views

A simple question on the subjunctive mood

Consider the sentence "I would like to say that he is incorrect." I don't know if the correct translation of this sentence is « Je voudrais dire qu'il est incorrect. » or « Je voudrais dire qu' il ...
0
votes
3answers
65 views

How to say that your “stomach twists” ?

How would you say that your "stomach twists" because of great surprise, shock, etc. ? Can you say: "mon estomac se tord" ?
0
votes
1answer
49 views

Faut-il utiliser “connaître” ou “savoir” dans cette phrase ? [duplicate]

Pourriez-vous me dire si cette phrase est correcte : Je pense que mes amis me prendraient pour une folle s'ils connaissaient cette histoire. Est-ce que ce sera mieux d'utiliser le verbe "savoir" ...
2
votes
5answers
128 views

Translation of workaround (as a temporary solution to bypass a problem)

Does solution de contournement translate workaround in the sense of: A means of overcoming some obstacle, especially an obstacle consisting of laws, regulations, or constraints ? Can we use ...
3
votes
4answers
530 views

Translation of “primer” in the context of textbook

NOUN An elementary textbook that serves as an introduction to a subject of study or is used for teaching children to read. ‘a first-year philosophy primer’ https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/...
3
votes
4answers
96 views

Is there any difference between “celui” and “à” to mean possession?

In the following example sentences: Cette lettre est celle de ma fille. Cette lettre est à ma fille. I think these two sentences mean the same, that it means "This letter is my daughter's.". ...
3
votes
3answers
106 views

How to properly say “I have to study” or “I need to study”?

I am stuck in a situtation where I google the methods of saying such sentence. I end up finding two possible most common solutions for this, which would be Je avoir à étude and Je dois étudier....
7
votes
3answers
86 views

« Ni » est-il acceptable dans « peu encombrants ni contraignants » ?

L'utilisation de ni dans cette phrase est-elle légitime, sachant que la tournure est affirmative ? Un capteur à cet endroit est peu encombrant ni contraignant.
1
vote
1answer
721 views

How do you say common tennis terms in French?

I design and develop a tennis scorekeeping app for Apple Watch, and would like to localize it for French. This is my first experience with localization and would like to get it right without relying ...
4
votes
1answer
87 views

Why is “aur-” the future stem of “avoir”, instead of “avr-”?

In many Romance languages the future tense is conjugated with the infinitive stem + combining present of "to have". For example: ES haber → habr- + hé = habré IT avere → avr- + ho = avrò But the ...
5
votes
1answer
88 views

Les mots composés de Nom + -iste

Les plus anciens termes en -iste ou –ien dans la langue française remontent aux guerres de religion, avec les Papistes, les Calvinistes, les Luthériens", explique Marc Arabyan. "Les termes en –iste ...
1
vote
1answer
33 views

Verbs that take 'de' or 'à' in moods that are not the indicative

Originally I planned to ask what are the rules involving imperative mood verbs that take "de" or "à". Then I figured I should include the question in relation to the subjunctive, given that I have ...
2
votes
1answer
20 views

Avoir de & Avoir [duplicate]

I read a vocabulary book which has this sentence «  le langage a d'innombrables expressions » Why don’t we write « le langage a des innombrables expressions »? Even we also write «  Il a des enfants ...
1
vote
1answer
70 views

L'énergie « sale » : simple antonyme de « propre » ?

Je ne me sens pas du tout gêné de refuser de l'énergie sale, alors que, nous, on offre de l'énergie propre à un prix très concurrentiel. [ Le premier ministre du Québec, M. François Legault, ...
3
votes
2answers
108 views

Difference entre « poulpe » et « pieuvre » ?

Quelle est la difference entre « poulpe » et « pieuvre » ? Les deux mots désignent certaines espèces de céphalopodes mais est-ce qu'il y a quelque chose de systématique/biologique/cladistique qui ...
4
votes
2answers
71 views

Formules de salutation avec ou sans séparation des genres ?

Un sujet plutôt classique avec pas mal de questions dans FSE (ex. ici), mais n'étant pas un locuteur natif, je me pose toujours des questions sur la bonne approche. De nos jours, faut-il utiliser des ...

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