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Thread: Français!

  1. #1


    After some thinking it through, I decided that the best way (for now, we may find a better format) would be to do one post a week on verbs and another on vocab/grammar because doing all verbs would result in you wanting to kill me (I've seen the looks my real life students give me after a week of only verbs). I'm not sure what days I'll be posting on and what not and I've not got a real timetable because I don't know what will happen once my daughter arrives.

    So this is going to be the very first post for the French classes. I've never done something like this over the internet so please do forgive me of it's all a little jumbled up. Also, I'm going to be explaining many things very simply so as to not get anybody too confused. However, if there is something you don't get please tell me! The only way to make this thread better, thus helping you to become more efficient in French, is to tell me! Constructive criticism is always helpful in regards to learning and teaching.

    I thought that I would explain the basics of French verbs, not extremely basic I'm afraid though! This is going to be the basics of the first two of the three groups, the persons and I'm going to look at all this through the present tense as to not overly confuse anybody. Also, it's killing two birds with one stone as it means you can learn the present tense.

    French verbs are normally sorted into three different categories: the first group, the second group and the third group. And we always use the following "persons":
    Je = I
    Tu = you (in the singular form)
    Il/elle/on = he/she/they (in the singular form)
    ^ these were what we call the singular persons and now we go on to the plural persons! It's important to realise the difference.
    Nous = we
    Vous = you (in the plural form, also this is what you would use when talking to somebody above you - such as teachers or the elderly - or to somebody you don't know, it's a sign of respect)
    Ils/elles = he/she (in the plural form)


    The first group consists of verbs that end in -er in their infinitive (non conjugated form) such as: manger (to eat), chanter (to sing), parler (to speak) etc etc. This is, arguably, the easiest group to conjugate. They will almost always end in -e, -es, -e, -ons, -ez, -ent (matching the above list of persons).

    Let's have a look at MANGER (to eat)
    Je mange
    Tu manges
    Il/elle/on mange
    Nous mangeons (this is a particular case, you normally wouldn't add the extra e before the -ons, it's for it to sound good. Without the e it would make the noise of MON-GON which sounds wrong, with the e it has the more appealing MON-GEON)
    Vous mangez
    Ils/elles mangent (you don't said this with the -ent ending sound, you say it like you would je mange, the -nt is ALWAYS silent in these cases!)

    The first group is very easy and is not irregular.


    The second group groups together verbs that end in -ir such as finir (to finish). This is a slightly more difficult group but after some practise it can become second nature.

    Let's have a look at FINIR (to finish)
    Je finis
    Tu finis
    Il/elle/on finit
    Nous finissons
    Vous finissez
    Ils/elles finissent

    Some important things to note:
    Not all the verbs will end the same as finir but it is a good base!
    If a verb is put together with nous in this group than it will ALWAYS end in -issons.
    They use a double radical, in other words for the singular persons they use the begging finis (apart from with il/elle/on) and finiss with the plural persons.

    The second group can seem like big leap from the first group and is definitely a little more tricky. It does however share a common factor with the first group: it is also not irregular. It will often not change except in certain circumstances.

    I'm going to do the third group in a different post on a different day as it is very long and complicated.

    I hope some people found this helpful/interesting on maybe you were amused by my random ramblings! If you have any questions please ask and I will do my best to answer! Sorry to anyone who perhaps more advanced or already knows this stuff or thinks this is super simple but I figured it would best to start out with this.

    If anybody has any requests for what to do next I would love to have some suggestions, I've got some ideas about what to do for the verb post but not for the vocab/grammar post!

    Thanks for reading! (If you see anything wrong in the post please tell me!)
    Beautiful baby girl who changed our world: Nettie Claudia Appleby ~ 25th of July 2014

    Bryony|Lydia|Vera|Petra|Imogen|Sadie|Monica|Georgi ana|Anneliese|Zara|Clara|Adeline|Lois|Sophia|Elena |Aurora|Lucille|Erica|Mercy|Blythe|Felicity

    Jude|Oscar|Xavier|Patrick|Bart|Felix|Nathaniel|Fre derick|Isaac|Evan|Theodore|Adam|Jasper|Callum|Ezra |Ezekiel|Henry|Samson|Niall|Percy|Barney|Seamus|Ha velock

  2. #3
    Fruit and vegetables is what I'm going to be doing for the vocab lesson today, I know it seems a little dull but it's one of the few things I've been asked to do.

    I'm quickly going to say this now: when you actually say words in the plural form even though it will most likely have the plural endings (s or x) you don't pronounce it! French people know you mean multiples of the item because of the plural article you will use (les and des). Furthermore, if you have un or une as the article that becomes des in the plural form and la, le or l' as the article then it's les in the plural form.

    Un/le = masculine
    Une/la = feminine
    L' = is both masculine and feminine and is only used if the noun that follows starts with a vowel or h (l'hôpital). Keep on mind that in France there are 6 vowels not 5: they have A, O, I, U, E and Y.
    Des/les = is both masculine and feminine (the S is silent on these words too)

    EDIT: you can interchange the articles, la pomme de terre could be une pomme de terre but un does sound and is slightly better. BUT, you can use either just don't mix up the genders. I did it once when I was on an exchange (as a teacher) in front of a class of 14 years old and had a chorus of the correct mutter at me under their breaths. Embarrassing.

    Let's start with veg:
    Potatoes = la pomme de terre / les pommes de Terre
    Carrots = la carotte / les carottes
    Peas = les petits pois (it would be le petit pois in the singular form but you wouldn't really say one pea, you don't order one pea in a restaurant.)
    Tomato = la tomate / les tomates
    Corn = le maïs (you wouldn't really say les maïs.)
    Onions = un oignon / des oignons
    Beans = un haricot / des haricots
    Radishes = le radis / les radis (this stays the same. It's pronounced Rah-DEE)
    Celery = le céleri / les céleris
    Mushroom = le champignon / les champignons (one of my favourite words in the French language)
    Cauliflower = la chou-fleur / les choux-fleurs (x is another way to show that some is plural, it normally follows a U)
    Broccoli = un brocoli / des brocolis
    Cucumber = le concombre / les concombres
    Asparagus = les asperges (you would not really ever say one single aspergaus in French, it's a feminine word so if you did want to it would be the article la, but like I said you just wouldn't say that, it doesn't sound grammatically correct)

    Apple = une pomme / des pommes
    Pears = une poire / des poires
    Bananas = une banane / des bananas
    Oranges = une orange / des oranges
    Lemons = un citron / des citrons
    Limes = un citron vert / des citrons verts (adjectives in French also take the plural, whereas in English you wouldn't say - for instance - "lots of greens limes"
    Grapefruit = un pamplemousse / des pamplemousses (another of my favourite words!)
    Pineapple = un ananas / des ananas (again, doesn't change even in the plural form)
    Strawberry = une fraise / des fraises
    Raspberry = une framboise / des framboises
    Blackberry = une mûre / des mûres
    Blueberry = une myrtille / des myrtilles
    Melon = un pastèque / des pastèques
    Peach = une pêche / des pêches
    Cherry = une cerise / des cerises
    Plum = une prune / des prunes
    Apricot = un abricot / des abricots

    And especially for @ashthedreamer, some religious words:
    Thanks-giving = l'action de grâce
    To worship = adorer (you would say je adore, tu adores, il/elle adore, nous adorons, vous adorez, Ils/elles adorent)
    Soul = une âme
    Apostles = les apôtres (masculine)
    Chaplain = l'aumônier (masculine)
    Alter = l'autel (masculine)
    Beloved = bien-aimé(e) - you add the extra e if you are talking about a woman or something feminine. You would also add an s if it was multiple things.
    Blessing = un bienfait
    Benevolence = une bienveillance
    Pope = le Pape
    Pastor = Le Pasteur
    Sermon is the same in both language, as is congregation except that French is spelt like this congrégation.
    Congrégation could be both la congrégation and une too, you can choose, sometimes it's all to do with what you think flows nicest.

    As for your question: louer is the verb for rent and it can be used for praise, however you would be better off say "louange" for praise. To answer your question Ash: I'm not too sure what you would say to mean praise The Lord. I would hassard an educated "guess" at à la louange de Dieu but to be honest it's not something I'm 100% sure of. I'll go and try and find out.

    If anybody has any extra fruit/veg or religious words they want please say!

    If you see anything that looks/seems wrong or that is just wrong please point it out! If you have any problems with any of this, please just say and I will do my best to help!

    Thanks for reading!
    Last edited by mollydolally; July 16th, 2014 at 06:35 PM.
    Beautiful baby girl who changed our world: Nettie Claudia Appleby ~ 25th of July 2014

    Bryony|Lydia|Vera|Petra|Imogen|Sadie|Monica|Georgi ana|Anneliese|Zara|Clara|Adeline|Lois|Sophia|Elena |Aurora|Lucille|Erica|Mercy|Blythe|Felicity

    Jude|Oscar|Xavier|Patrick|Bart|Felix|Nathaniel|Fre derick|Isaac|Evan|Theodore|Adam|Jasper|Callum|Ezra |Ezekiel|Henry|Samson|Niall|Percy|Barney|Seamus|Ha velock

  3. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Cair Paravel :)
    @molly - Est-ce que ces mots religieux sont masculins ou féminins? (J'ai pensé que je devrais pratiquer en français, si possible. S'il te plaît, corrigez-moi si je me trompe!) "Louange" est-elle un nom? Oui? Ou un verbe? Qu'est-ce que c'est le verbe pour "to praise" (comme "praise the Lord"/"I praise the Lord", etc.)?

    ETA: Also! And I don't really know how to say this in French yet, haha, but does the plural of "blueberry" have an "S" on the end? It was the only one that didn't change at all from singular to plural, but I know "marron" doesn't change (right? I think I read that somewhere), so I thought maybe blueberries were the same. (Or it could also be a typo, and I promise, I'm not trying to be nitpicky, haha, if so.) Was there any reasoning for using "des" in some nouns and "les" with others? The whole use of "les" and "des" really seems to confuse me, especially at the beginning of sentences. Like if you were going to say "hands filled the air", would you say "les mains", "des mains", or just "mains"? I feel like I've seen all three scenarios, but I don't really know what the rule is there. I know "les" (or even le/la, etc.) usually follows aimer (like "j'aime les frites", which translates to "I like fries" not "I like the fries"), and some form of "de" (du/de la/de l'/des) usually follows ne ____ pas, and after sans, it usually forgoes the article (like sans espoir/sans chaussures). I would love to hear a lesson on that, too, haha!
    Last edited by ashthedreamer; July 16th, 2014 at 05:29 PM.

  4. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    If you're looking for a fun way to practice conjugations here's a name game thread where you can "conjugate" names that look like infinitive verbs in a foreign language.

  5. #9
    @ash: yeah sorry, it should be des myrtilles, typo on my part. I'll go fix it now.

    As for your French, pretty much perfect! I'll go back in a mo and put the articles in for the religious words.
    As for les and des at the start of sentences: yes, it is perfectly acceptable to use them at the start of a sentence. In French you never just say the word. In English if somebody asked you what you don't like you could say just "snakes" but in Frances you wouldn't just say "serpents", it's just not right and even when I say it outloud to myself now (got a really funny look from the woman I'm sharing a room with...) it sounds so wrong, you would ALWAYS say "des serpents".
    Beautiful baby girl who changed our world: Nettie Claudia Appleby ~ 25th of July 2014

    Bryony|Lydia|Vera|Petra|Imogen|Sadie|Monica|Georgi ana|Anneliese|Zara|Clara|Adeline|Lois|Sophia|Elena |Aurora|Lucille|Erica|Mercy|Blythe|Felicity

    Jude|Oscar|Xavier|Patrick|Bart|Felix|Nathaniel|Fre derick|Isaac|Evan|Theodore|Adam|Jasper|Callum|Ezra |Ezekiel|Henry|Samson|Niall|Percy|Barney|Seamus|Ha velock

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