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votes
1answer
18 views

Identifying an old French movie about poor parents' infant adopted by a rich family

I would like to identify an old French movie about an infant born into a very poor family. The child is adopted by a rich, childless family and grows up in a well-to-do environment. Many years later, ...
0
votes
2answers
34 views

French Beginner Needs Help (A Question About Grammar In A French Comic)

Hello everybody, I am a French beginner. This comic is from my textbook, and I don't understand why there is a "DE" (marked with yellow highlighter) in the sentence "C'EST PAS JUSTE! LA ...
1
vote
1answer
49 views

“Vous Vous” in Spoken French

Many times when I watch French content with subtitles, I see “vous vous” but only hear “vous”. Even when I slow it down, I don’t hear it. Is the second vous skipped?
1
vote
1answer
67 views

Comment dire “it's all over the place” en français ?

En anglais, on dit souvent "it's all over the place" pour signifier qu'un discours, un essai, ou un film parle trop de sujets et n'a pas de thème unifié. Je suis curieux de savoir comment le ...
1
vote
1answer
38 views

Is “Le poids de l'entourage” a French idiom or expression?

I was reading a French text and saw this sentence: Le poids de l'entourage est parfois difficile à gérer dans l'éducation de ces enfants but I have a feeling that the translation is very odd, so I ...
2
votes
5answers
159 views

Conveying “off your rocker” (slang for silly, crazy)

If you say (informally) that someone is off their rocker, you mean that that person is crazy, silly, etc.. E.g. You're off your rocker if you think I'm going to climb that mountain. How can one ...
2
votes
1answer
110 views

How to convey “to teach someone the ropes”

The idiom to teach someone the ropes means to teach someone how to do something, especially a job. E.g. "Jack has been here for years – he’ll show you the ropes." Trying to convey the ...
3
votes
1answer
57 views

“Trente-deux positions” in Inventaire by Jacques Prévert

I'm reading the poem Inventaire by Jacques Prévert, where I think I am able to understand most of its meaning (superficial as it may be), except a phrase in the second-to-last stanza: deux sœurs ...
2
votes
3answers
53 views

Usage de “l’avenir appartient à ceux qui se lèvent tôt”

Searching how to convey in French the meaning of the English idiom the early bird catches the worm I found l'avenir appartient à ceux qui se lèvent tôt. E.g. The admissions in this college get filled ...
3
votes
1answer
49 views

“Gosh” and “bon sang”

Gosh, I didn't expect to see you here! Gosh is used (an exclamation in this context) to express (informally) surprise or strength of feeling. [Gosh can be also used as a euphemism for ‘God’. E.g. &...
0
votes
1answer
46 views

Scrupuleux/minutieux/méticuleux/consciencieux

Which of the following words would be the most commonly used and the most "familier" when speaking about for example a student or an employee who does his homework/work in a very careful and ...
2
votes
2answers
42 views

Différence entre « orgueil » et « fierté »

Quelle est la différence ente orgueil et fierté? J'ai toujours eu l'impression qu'« orgueil » avait un connotation négative contrairement à « fierté »: « Je suis fier de mon travail. », « L'orgueil ...
0
votes
2answers
33 views

Usage du mot “fracas”

Le mot fracas est-il considéré vieux ? Peut-on l'utiliser couramment ? En anglais le mot fracas (emprunt au français) signifie bagarre (quarrel). Peut-on aussi l'utiliser avec le même sens en français ...
6
votes
5answers
153 views

Quel est le mot le plus long d’une syllabe ?

Le français comporte beaucoup de lettres muettes qui peuvent amener à former des mots très longs et pour autant d’une seule syllabe. Sur un autre forum, j’ai croisé le mot Schtroumpfs (11 lettres), ...
3
votes
2answers
43 views

Mis à part vs. apart from

My question is the following: can mis à part be used both for expressing "inclusion" and "exclusion" as is the case with the english apart from. What I mean is that in English it ...
1
vote
1answer
31 views

son statut de/du sauveur du peuple polonais

Il était alors l’heure de remettre en cause son statut de sauveur du peuple polonais. Pourquoi il a été écrit: statut de sauveur? On a précisé qu'il s'agissait du sauveur du peuple polonais, d'un ...
3
votes
0answers
40 views

French (online) dictionary equivalent to dictionary.cambridge.org/ (classification of words according to their level: A1, A2, etc.)

One of the things that I greatly enjoy to the online Cambridge dictionary is the classification of the words and idioms according to Common European Framework of Reference for Languages. So for ...
11
votes
2answers
524 views

Conveying “out of the blue” (completely unexpected)

If something happens out of the blue, it is completely unexpected; e.g. I hadn’t heard from Georges for years; then I got a letter out of the blue. Google Translate gives Je n'avais pas entendu ...
1
vote
2answers
77 views

Conveying “Go bust”

The idiom "go bust" (informal) means to spend or lose all of one's money; to go broke. If a company goes bust, it goes bankrupt. Linguee gives faire faillite as translation but it sounds to ...
3
votes
1answer
49 views

Pourquoi le mot “regretté” se place-t-il avant le nom ?

When I speak of my late mother, I gather she’s not * ma mère regrettée, even though she is ma mère défunte. What’s up with that? Is there some semantic nuance I’m missing that accounts for this ...
3
votes
2answers
167 views

“Greener pastures” and “pâturages plus verts”

He worked there for two years before leaving for greener pastures. He decided it was time to move on to greener pastures. "Greener pastures" is an idiom meaning a new better, more ...
0
votes
3answers
52 views

Equivalent of “Dear Staff”

What is the equivalent of "Dear Staff" in an email? For instance, a CEO wants to send an email to all the employees to invite them to a meeting. How could he or she start his email? Chers/...
5
votes
1answer
57 views

Usage du verbe “troller”

Peut-on utiliser le verbe "troller" couramment ? Son emploi est-il acceptable dans tous les registres ?
3
votes
1answer
179 views

Joke ways to say hello and goodbye, like “see you later alligator”

For those unfamiliar with "see you later aligator" see here: https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=See%20you%20later%2C%20alligator. Do you have some examples of rhyming greetings ...
2
votes
2answers
94 views

Une Personne Morale… Is it a practical and logical appellation?

I am French and I find that Une Personne Morale the first choice of all government forms, it denotes a representative of a company. We have the choice of being a physical or a moral person. The ...
2
votes
1answer
94 views

Is my translation of “I’m talking about the software. It’s slow in translating but precise.” grammatically correct?

Is my translation of “I’m talking about the software. It’s slow in translating but precise.” grammatically correct? Because « être lent(e) à » égale “to be slow in ...-ing”, I reached « Je parle du ...
2
votes
1answer
79 views

When to use “depuis” and “puisque”

Both of these words mean "since" in English but I am unsure of the rules governing which one to use when. Can someone help please?
1
vote
1answer
49 views

I am learning the difference between le plus-que-parfait and le conditionnel passé and I am a little confused

As the title states, I am a little confused! I am working on some practice questions and the question asks: Mettez les verbes entre parenthèses au plus-que-parfait ou au conditionnel passé.  Si tu (s'...
3
votes
3answers
91 views

Négation en français courant

Quand est ce que je peux retirer le "ne" négatif en français courant ? par exemple, je dis "je n'ai pas vérifié" ou "j'ai pas vérifié" ?
7
votes
3answers
830 views

“Sometimes it is the people no one imagines anything of who do the things that no one can imagine” — Alan Turing, into French

J'essaye de traduire cette citation d'Alan Turing tout en gardant le format de "quote" : "Sometimes it is the people no one imagines anything of who do the things that no one can ...
2
votes
2answers
55 views

“entre le marteau et l'enclume”

Pour traduire : It's difficult to see how to get out of this situation because we're between a rock and a hard place. j'ai dis : Il est difficile de voir comment sortir de cette situation car οn ...
2
votes
1answer
76 views

Conveying “bigger than life”

The other day I was talking about Freddie Mercury. I wanted to convey: Having an outrageously flamboyant stage persona he was a larger-than-life artist. I said Ayant un personnage de scène ...
3
votes
3answers
102 views

Est-ce que « laisse tomber » est impoli ou agressif ?

Je me plante toujours quand je veux dire “never mind” en français. Par exemple, l’autre jour, j’étais à la caisse chez Monoprix et je voulais chercher quelque chose que je m'étais rendu compte avoir ...
3
votes
3answers
78 views

inviter vs emmener

Larousse says that "inviter" means: Asking for someone to come, to be in a certain place, to participate in something Asking or encouraging someone to do something using persuasion, ...
1
vote
2answers
88 views

Une mise en relief : “C'est à Paris que” vs “C'est à Paris où”

C'est à Paris que les bistrots représentent un véritable art de vivre. C'est à Paris où les bistrots représentent un véritable art de vivre. Quelle phrase serait plus correcte? Merci!
2
votes
1answer
79 views

Octroire or Octroyer

Is it correct to say: "Pour octroire à quelqu'un la totalité des privilèges administratifs" I found this sentence in an official documentation and I wonder if this is correct.
2
votes
1answer
65 views

Comment « trancher » glisse-t-il sémantiquement pour signifier « décider » ?

Quelles notions sémantiques sous-tendent « couper en tranches, taillader » avec « statuer » ? TRANCHER : Définition de TRANCHER [A][2.]c) Mettre fin à une difficulté en faisant un choix, en prenant ...
6
votes
1answer
237 views

Is there a similar saying to “a drowning man will clutch at a straw” in French?

It is about someone who is in a very difficult situation, and who will take any available opportunity to improve it An example: Facing the possibility that his marriage might be over, John began ...
2
votes
2answers
69 views

Comment dire “as much as” en français ?

Je me demande comment dire "as much as" en français. Par exemple, je voulais dire : As much as we try to stand out, we follow the same rules. Ce que je propose : Autant qu’on essaye de se ...
2
votes
1answer
79 views

In an Informal Setting How Long Do People Usually Wait to Use “Tu”

So if you meet someone of the opposite gender (that you are romantically interested in) at a bar in France, how long do people usually wait to start using "tu"? An hour? later that evening? ...
1
vote
2answers
156 views

If a letter is signed 'Le Directeur de votre banque', is it understood that that person is male, and should be addressed accordingly?

I think the title sums it up, but if a letter is signed literally (and therefore, rather generically) 'Le Directeur de votre banque', is it understood that that person is male, and should be ...
1
vote
4answers
162 views

Is this the right way to say it? à condition que/de

Vous irez visiter ces îles exotiques à condition … d'avoir que vous ayez … votre visa. I'm pretty sure the 1st one is correct, but is the second one grammatically correct or not?
5
votes
2answers
814 views

Does the word 'culte' have the same negative connotations in French as in English?

I was quite shocked when in Strasbourg I read a plaque that said that something had been built by the 'culte catholique', but from the dictionary definition I cannot tell whether it is a polite ...
0
votes
0answers
19 views

Pourquoi dit-on «qu'il n'y paraît» et non «qu'il n'y paraît pas» ou «qu'il ne paraît pas» ? [duplicate]

Pourquoi en français on dit «qu'il n'y paraît» toujours et non «qu'il n'y paraît pas» ou «qu'il ne paraît pas» ? Je ne comprends pas pourquoi on utilise le mot ne ici et le mot y. Par exemple en ...
0
votes
1answer
48 views

arrêter court et dans toutes ses fugues

Avec une douzaine de propositions de cette espèce, et une presse libre, je voudrais arrêter court, dans toutes ses fugues, le gouvernement du 2 décembre. Je ne comprends pas arrêter court et dans ...
2
votes
1answer
32 views

Why's “peu s'en faut” grammatical, when falloir must be preceded by “il”?

Why isn't "peu s'en faut" preceded by il? Like "peu IL s'en faut"? Doesn't this violate the rule that a dummy pronoun must precede "falloir"? peu s'en faut | ...
3
votes
2answers
117 views

What do se and en mean in s'en falloir?

I'm asking HOW s'en falloir means "manquer", not whether it does. What does "se" mean here? Is it a reflexive or reciprocal pronoun here? What does "en" refer to here? ...
2
votes
1answer
82 views

“qui fait de” or “fait de”?

I have encountered the phrase: Soient K la sous-catégorie pleine de E formée des objets qui peuvent être trivialisés par un objet galoisien, et S la sous-catégorie pleine de E formée des sommes ...
0
votes
2answers
78 views

“nous tiendra lien” ?

I have encountered in the transcription of a text nous tiendra lien but is it not nous tiendra lieu ? Does "nous tiendra lien" have a sense?
1
vote
2answers
71 views

What does it mean “il veut me faire ma fête”?

It is in a song named Je Suis Décadente by Brigitte Fontaine Quand Ernest il veut me faire ma fête Je lui dis « A quoi bon ? » très amère

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