Silent letters in French

Silent letters in French

Silent letters in French

I am sure you have already noticed that, in French, we don’t write the same way we speak.
This is due to all the silent letters in French words.
Let’s see what these letters are.

 

At the beginning or inside a word

The letter H

We never pronounce the letter H in French, except when it’s associated with c, then it transforms in the sound “ch”.
However, we have two kinds of H: the “strong H” and the “soft H”. The soft H accepts a “liaison”, the strong one doesn’t (I’ll write an article very soon on that subject).
Neither of them is pronounced.

The letter U

Don’t pronounce it after G or Q :
Un quartier [kartie]
Une guerre [Ger]

And also, be careful: OU is a special sound different from U.

The letter N

Don’t pronounce it when it’s associated with another letter to create a nasal sound:
EN/AN/IN/ON/OM etc.
( > Watch my video about nasal sounds in French.)

The letter I

Don’t pronounce it after O because OI is pronounced WA.


At the end of a word

The letter E

Don’t pronounce it at the end of a word except if there is an accent on top of it: é
(Watch my video about that subject if you want more details about the pronunciation of E)

The letter S

We use it a lot at the end of the words to indicate the plural. Don’t pronounce it.

Also, some words end with S but are not plural. You still don’t pronounce the final S.
Examples: autrefois, un avis, un bras, une brebis, un colis, un corps, un dos, un héros, jamais, un jus, un mois, un poids, un refus, le repos, une souris, un tapis, le temps, volontiers, etc.
( formerly, an opinion, an arm, a sheep, a parcel, a body, a back, a hero, never, a juice, a month, a weight, a refusal, rest, a mouse, a carpet, time, willingly)

And finally, don’t pronounce it at the end of the verbs:
For example: tu parles, nous parlons, je parlais, je parlerais.
(you speak, we speak, I spoke, I would spoke.)

The letter X

Don’t pronounce it at the end.
It’s quite frequent, we can find it:

  • At the end of these nouns: un choix, une croix, un époux, le houx, une noix, la paix, une perdrix, un prix, une toux, une voix.
    (a choice, a cross, a husband, a holly, a walnut, peace, a partridge, a prize, a cough, a voice.)
  • At the end of some plural : des choux, des bijoux, des cailloux, des genoux, des poux, des joujoux, des hiboux.
    (cabbages, jewels, pebbles, knees, lice, toys, owls.)
  • At the end of many adjectives : délicieux, joyeux, heureux, merveilleux, doux, jaloux, roux etc.
    (delicious, happy, happy, wonderful, soft, jealous, red hair etc.)
  • At the end of some verbs: je peux, tu peux, je veux, tu veux
    (I can, you can, I want, you want).

The letter T

It’s most of the time mute at the end of a verb:

  • Examples 1 (before a vowel): un achat, le climat, un chat, un habit, un lit, un récit, étroit, un toit, un bruit, un enduit, minuit, un capot, un escargot, un matelot, un robot, souvent, un point, un bout, etc
    (a purchase, the climate, a cat, a coat, a bed, a story, narrow, a roof, a noise, a coating, midnight, a hood, a snail, a sailor, a robot, often, a point, one end)
  • Examples 2 (before an R) : l’art, un départ, un concert, un désert, un dessert, un confort, un effort, un port, un tort, court etc.
    (art, a departure, a concert, a desert, a dessert, a comfort, an effort, a port, a wrongdoing, short etc.)
  • Examples 3 (we don’t pronounce the C and the T): aspect, respect, irrespect, suspect.
    (appearance, respect, disrespect, suspect)
  • Examples 4 (at the end of the verbs) : il finit, il finissait, il finirait, ils finiraient etc.
    (he finishes, I finished, he would finish, they would finish)

The letter D

We find it at the end of some words :

  • -aud : chaud, un crapaud, costaud, etc.
    (hot, a toad, beefy)
  • -and: un allemand, un gland, grand, un goéland, un gourmand, normand, etc.
    (a German, an acorn, a big, a gull, a gourmand, a Norman, etc.)
  • -ard: un brassard, un boulevard, un brouillard, un canard, un dossard, un hasard, un homard, un léopard, un retard, etc.
    (an armband, a boulevard, a fog, a duck, a bib, a chance, a lobster, a leopard, a delay, etc.)
  • -ond : un bond, un fond, un plafond, etc.
    (a leap, a bottom, a ceiling, etc .)
  • -ord : un accord, un bord, le nord, un record, etc.
    (an agreement, an edge, the north, a record)
  • -ourd : lourd, sourd.
    (heavy: heavy, deaf.)

The letter G

We don’t pronounce it at the end.

For example: un bourg, un faubourg, un coing, un étang, un hareng, long, un poing, sang,
(A small village, a suburb, a quince, a pond, a herring, long, a fist, blood).

Except in words ending with ING, then we pronounce it like in English:
Le shopping, le jogging, le footing, le dressing, le planning, le dancing, le crowdfunding, le zapping, le shooting, le rafting etc.
> We like words ending with ING, we find them very cool 😊

The letter P

We don’t pronounce it at the end.

For example: prompt, sept, beaucoup, un champ, un coup, un drap, un galop, un loup, un sirop, trop.
(prompt, seven, many, a field, a blow, a sheet, a gallop, a wolf, a syrup, too.)

Neither at the end of some verbs: il interrompt, il corrompt, il rompt.
(he interrupts, he corrupts, he breaks.)

Voilà! I know that’s a lot 😊

French is a very nostalgic and conservative language in the sense that it has kept, throughout its history, many letters that were no longer used.

 

Direct and indirect pronouns in French

Direct and indirect pronouns in French

Direct and indirect pronouns in French

Presentation

A pronoun replaces a noun or a nominal group.

collègue : a noun
un collègue sympa : a nominal group
un collègue de travail : a nominal group

When you don’t want to repeat a word many times (which is boring), you replace it with a pronoun.

J’ai un collègue. Ce collègue est sympa et efficace. Je parle souvent à ce collègue et j’écoute toujours ce collègue.

> In this sentence you have too many repetitions of “collègue”. let’s transform it :

J’ai un collègue, il est sympa et efficace. Je lui parle souvent et je l’écoute toujours.

direct and indirect The repetitions have been replaced by different pronouns :

  • il is a subject pronoun
  • lui    is an indirect pronoun
  • l’      is a direct pronoun

Now you know why we use pronouns, let’s learn when we use direct and indirect pronouns.

Indirect pronouns

Indirect pronouns replace indirect objects.
An indirect object is a nominal group that is connected to the verb through the preposition à.

Je parle  à ma nouvelle collègue.
> Je lui parle.

J’obéis à mon chef.
> Je lui obéis.

Je fais confiance à tous mes collègues.
> Je leur fais confiance.

You can ask the question: Je parle à qui? (I talk to whom ?)
> There is the preposition à between the verb and the object, therefore it’s an indirect object.

Unfortunately, sometimes a French verb uses the preposition à, but the equivalent verb in English doesn’t have a preposition. That can be confusing for you :
Je téléphone à mon ami – I phone my friend (and not I phone to my friend).
So, you need to know the French verbs that use the preposition à before an indirect object:

For example :
téléphoner à, parler à, obéir à, manquer à, plaire à, écrire à, sourire à, ressembler à, faire confiance à etc.

direct and indirect

Direct pronouns

Direct pronouns replace direct objects.
A direct object is a nominal group that is directly connected to the verb without a preposition.

Je comprends mon collègue.
> Je le comprends.

J’écoute ce collègue.
> Je l’écoute.

Je comprends l’opinion de mon collègue.
> Je la comprends.

J’écoute mes collègues de travail.
> Je les écoute.

You can ask the question: Je comprends qui? Je comprends quoi? (I understand who? I understand what?)
> There is NO preposition between the verb and the object , therefore it’s a direct object.

Summary

 masculine
singular
feminine
singular
Plural
masculine and feminine
 
Direct pronounsle
l' (before a vowel)
la
l' (before a vowel)
les
Indirect pronounsluiluileur

Good to know

Many verbs accept both indirect and direct objects :

Il écrit un mail à son chef.

“un mail” is direct: il écrit quoi? > un mail (He writes what? > an e-mail).
” à son chef” is indirect: il écrit à qui? > à son chef (He writes to whom? > to his boss).
You can replace these objects with their pronouns :

Il lui écrit un mail (He writes an e-mail to him)
Il l’écrit à son chef (He writes it to his boss)
And even :
Il le lui écrit   🙂   (He writes it to him.)

In French, the pronouns are BEFORE the verb.

Voilà! I hope this lesson is clear to you. Don’t hesitate to ask me questions!
A bientôt.
Elsa

Futur proche, futur simple : the future tenses in French

Futur proche, futur simple : the future tenses in French

Futur proche, futur simple : the future tenses in French

 

In the French language, there are 2 future tenses: the “futur proche” and the “futur simple”.

Paradoxically, the futur proche is simpler (easier to build) than the futur simple, that’s why we use it more.

 

THE ” FUTUR PROCHE “

It is supposed to be used for something close in time: tomorrow, next week etc. but if you listen to French people speaking, you will notice that they use it also to express actions further in time.

Je vais visiter le musée demain
(I am going to visit the museum tomrrow.)

Je vais prendre ma retraite dans trois ans.
(I am going to retire in 3 years.)

How do we build this future? It is quite easy :

We conjugate the verb ALLER in the present + we add the INFINITIVE of the verb after.

Je vais PARTIR.
Tu vas RESTER.
Il va SE PROMENER.
Elle va SE COUCHER.
On va REGARDER la télé.
Nous allons REGARDER la télé.
Vous aller ECOUTER la radio.
Ils vont PRENDRE un rendez-vous.
Elles vont ALLER danser.

Quite easy isn’t it? Now let’s compare with the ” futur simple”

 

THE ” FUTUR SIMPLE “

In grammar, “simple” doesn’t mean “easy”, it means that there is only one part (one word) in the verb.
We’ve seen that there are 2 parts in the futur proche (the verb aller + the infinitive of the verb), for the futur simple you have only 1 part, but it’s more difficult to conjugate.

What you do is that you take the infinitive of the verb you want to conjugate, for example, PARTIR, and you add the endings of the futur.
Let’s have a look at it closer. (I’ll write the infinitive in capital letters, but it’s just a way to make you understand quicker.)

Je PARTIRai
Tu PARTIRas
Il PARTIRa
Elle PARTIRa
On PARTIRa
Nous PARTIRons
Vous PARTIRez
Ils PARTIRont
Elles PARTIRont

So, you will say that it’s not very complicated. That’s right, but there are some subtleties I need to explain to you.

First, when you have an infinitive ending with -e- you need to take off this -e-. For example, there is an -e- at the end of the verb VENDRE (to sell), so you conjugate it that way :

Je VENDRai
Tu VENDRas
Il VENDRa
Nous VENDRons
Vous VENDRez
Ils VENDRont

Then you have irregular verbs you need to learn :

ENVOYER (to send) j’enverrai
VOIR (to see) je verrai
COURIR (to run) je courrai
POUVOIR (can) je pourrai
MOURIR (to die) je mourrai
 
VENIR (to come) je viendrai
TENIR (to hold) je tiendrai
VALOIR (to be worth) il vaudra
FALLOIR (must) il faudra
VOULOIR (to want) je voudrai
 
DEVOIR (must) je devrai
RECEVOIR (to receive) je recevrai
PLEUVOIR (to rain) il pleuvra
 
AVOIR (to have) j’aurai
ÊTRE (to be) je serai
SAVOIR (to know) je saurai
FAIRE (to do) je ferai
ALLER (to go) j’irai
 
APPELER (to call) J’appellerai (double l)
JETER (to throw) Je jèterai (accent)
ESSUYER (to wipe) J’essuierai (no y)

I gave you the first person (sometimes third when first is never used) as an example, you keep the same root for the other persons.

Here are some examples with the futur simple :

Quand il aura 60 ans, il prendra sa retraite.
(When he is 60, he will retire.)
Quand je serai en vacances, je te rendrai visite.
(When I am on holiday, I will visit you)

You’ve noticed that we use the future after “quand”, contrary to the English.

Some other examples :
En 2100, il y aura des voitures volantes.
(In 2100, there will be flying cars.)
Dans cinq ans,nous irons en Espagne.
(In five years, we will go to Spain.)

Voilà! I hope you understand these 2 futures now.
If you still have questions, ask them in the comments below.

You can also watch my video about the futur proche by clicking here

A bientôt!

‘’ On ’’ and ‘’ nous ’’ in French, what’s the difference?

‘’ On ’’ and ‘’ nous ’’ in French, what’s the difference?

‘’ On ’’ and ‘’ nous ’’ in French, what’s the difference?

You noticed that in French we have two pronouns that we use in a very similar way: “on” and “nous”

NOUS :

“Nous” comes from the Latin nōs. It replaces “je” + one or more other people. We translate it as “we” in english.

ON :

Before becoming a personal pronoun, “on” was a common name. “On” was first spelled “om”, then “hom” and came from the Latin “homo” same as the word ”homme” (man). Originally, then, ”on” meant “man” in general. But with time it turned into a pronoun and lost this meaning.
Still, that’s the reason why we conjugate “on” in the singular even if today the meaning is plural!

Today, it can refer to:

• an indeterminate subject unknown to the speaker and is equivalent to “someone”. For example, when a person inside a room says (not knowing who it is) :

“On sonne à la porte.” 
“Someone is ringing at the door.”

• a whole group of people, in the sense of “people”. For example:

“En France, on célèbre la Fête Nationale le 14 juillet.”
“In France, we celebrate the National Day on July 14th.”

• a general truth value, for example in proverbs:

“On n’est jamais aussi bien servi que par soi-même”
” We are never as well served as by ourselves.”

• in the familiar register, it is very often used for the first person of the plural (in the sense of “nous”).
For example, someone with a group might say:

“Nous mangeons au restaurant ce soir.
“We eat at the restaurant tonight.”

In daily French, “on” has already replaced the subject “nous”. According to L. R. Waugh, in his corpus of conversational metropolitan French, “on” is used in 99% of cases, and “nous” only in 1% of cases!

So, in conclusion, when you speak, it is better to use ”on” to sound more natural, except in a very formal situation; then you can use ”nous”, such as when you make an official speech, but it is quite rare.

In writing it is used more often, especially in formal letters addressed to the administration.

Voilà, I hope you understand better why we have this strange situation in French!

These professions that have no feminine in French!

These professions that have no feminine in French!

These professions that have no feminine in French!

Today, in the French language, there are various attempts to create feminine forms for the professions and they are not always unanimous.

in Quebec, Switzerland and Belgium, the feminine has long been generalized to all functions. In France, the resistance was greater but a consensus was found, more or less. Here is the list of occupations that posed the most problems and the solutions that have been found:


1. Chef (Boss or Chef)

The common point of these professions refractory to gender variation is their elitist and valued status. They are linked to management positions or intellectual occupations. However, the word cheffe as the feminine of chef has been used more often over the pas few years (so it’s quite recent), especially when it translates ” boss ”. However, when it comes to the culinary field, the use of the feminine is still quite rare in my opinion.

2. Manager (Manager)

It is a widely used word in French, and has no feminine. In Quebec, this function name, borrowed from English, is often translated into French as le Gérant / la Gérante ou le /la Gestionnaire”. In France you would say une manager. The absence of feminine form for this profession could be explained by its English origin, but on the other hand, the important social status and the leading position with which this post is associated could also have something to do with it.

3. Maire (Mayor)

Most of the nouns ending in -e in the masculine form have the same feminine form. They are called epicenes: le/la juge. The determinants and adjectives that accompany them are written in the feminine: une juge italienne, la maire adjointe. However, for some high-ranking professions such as the mayor, the male form has been used for a long time as the only form: we would have said ” Madame le maire ”. Today, we generally use ” la maire” in France and ” la mairesse” in Switzerland and Canada. In Belgium, ” la bourgmestre” is used.

4. Gouverneur (Governor)

One of the rules of the feminine is that when we have a masculine ending with -eur the feminine ends with – euse [for nouns that have a verbal base] For example, the verb COIFFER > the profession is un coiffeur/une coiffeuse. However, it has been noticed that the suffix -eure has become very productive, and is now more frequently used to create the new words for femine professions, but only for intellectual functions with responsibility like gouverneure, superviseure, while we keep the suffix –euse to manual or less ”prestigious” professions: serveuse, camionneuse, vendeuse, coiffeuse etc.


5. Professeur (Teacher, Professor)

Same for teacher. It was (some time ago ?) a prestigious profession that had no feminine. Today, if we want to feminize it, we use “teacher” and not ” professeure ” so as not to change our habits and not to “shock sensitive ears”, because the pronunciation is the same.

6. Employeur (Employer)

For the same reason, the feminine ” employeure ” is used more often, even if ” employeuse ” exists in the dictionary!

7. Assureur (Insurer)

Personally, I have never heard anything other than the masculine for this profession. For example, I would say ” mon assureur est madame x ”. So, I imagine that if we had to definitely put it in the feminine, we would use ” assureure ” so as not to change the pronunciation.

8. Docteur (Doctor)

Another rule of the feminine is that when we have a masculine ending with -teur, the feminine ends with par – trice. But, the doctor having long been a man, the feminine who should have been ” doctrice ” has never been used. Today, the French-speaking countries have made different choices: ” docteure ” in France, ” doctoresse ” in Switzerland. Note that for the French, the forms ” -esse ” for professions seems old or even ridiculous (except maitresse d’école : school teacher) while they are very well accepted in Switzerland. All this being a matter of habit of course.

9. Auteur (Author)

For the same reasons, the female author should have been ” une autrice ”. And when it was necessary to feminize the word recently, many were in favor of autrice. However, it seems to me that, as the habit was used to speak with the masculine, the term ” auteure ” was preferred, probably because it did not change the pronunciation … nor the habits.


10. Ecrivain (Writer)

The form “écrivaine” is recent and seems to become the norm for the female writer.

11. Ingénieur (Engineer)

Sometimes the pronunciation of the regular feminine is not ideal, it is complicated to use it for some reasons of double meaning. Thus, ” ingénieuse ” is the feminine of the adjective ” ingénieux ” which means ingenious, clever, inventive. That’s why, to avoid any confusion with this word, the feminine ” ingénieure ” is used.


12. Pompier (Firefighter)

I have always heard that word in the masculine or sometimes with the expression ” femme-pompier” which means ”woman firefighter”. This sounds ridiculous, but apparently not as much as the word ” pompière ” that should be the regular feminine form but that no one seems to want to use. Why? I have not found a logical reason for it and I think it is probably a very objective criterion as: ” that doesn’t sound nice ”.

13. Médecin (Doctor)

For the doctor, the dictionaries do not attest any feminine form, although the French feminization guide suggests “médecine”. The problem is that the term “médecine” means medicine and refers to the science, which explains the refusal to use it. So, the most common method of feminization is the agreement of the feminine article: le médecin / la médecin.

Same for “un marin“(a sailor), we do not say “une marine” because this word means navy.

That’s it, my list is finished. However, I have one last question: Does the opposite problem exist? Are there professions that are only female? We can say that it is very rare. I found one:

Sage-femme (Midwife)

As this profession became more and more successful among men, it was necessary to find a male equivalent. The word ” sage-homme ” has been proposed but seems ridiculous (because it means wise-man) so we have, for the moment, kept the feminine word for men also. Thus, we say a ” un homme sage-femme” (a midwife man)!


Voilà, so we see that the linguistic feminization of some professions has not always been simple and can still evolve because it is the users who has the right to life or death on a word.

We can summarize all this by saying that the intellectual and prestigious professions had more difficulty to find their feminine and that very often we used for the feminine version a written form which did not change the pronunciation and which is thus … identical to the masculine one when we speak!
All that for this

And you, do you have these kinds of problems in your language?

Read in french on that subject  here

How to find the gender of things in French?

How to find the gender of things in French?

How to find the gender of things in French?

In French, do objects have a sex? Where does this strange idea come from? Who decided one day that the toothpaste was a man and the toothbrush a woman? This is a question I have always asked myself.

And I have the impression that no one really has a historical answer to it.

How to answer this question that a child would ask: ” So the table is the desk wife? ”

Milner, a linguist, wrote in 1988: ” We could talk about the group “le” and the group “la” rather than masculine or feminine gender.

Indeed, the masculine and feminine appellation seems a bit ridiculous for objects.

1. Gendre in various languages

You have probably noticed that the genre does not exist in all languages.

Some languages, like Danish, are have four genders: the masculine; feminine; neutral (gender neither masculine nor feminine); and the common (gender used for the masculine and feminine together).

Others, such as Russian, modern Greek, German or Slovene, have 3 genders: masculine, feminine and neutral.

English lost the gender at the Middle English stage. It is considered that English has a residual grammatical gender because some names have a hybrid behavior: animals, sometimes male or female and neutral, and, more surprisingly, land or sea vehicles often represented by the female pronoun.

Finally, some languages ​​have no gender: most of the languages ​​of Asia, the majority of Amerindian languages, the Uralic languages ​​(Turkish, Mongolian, Japanese, Korean, etc.), the Finno-Ugric languages ​​(Hungarian, Finnish , Estonian), and an isolated case among Indo-European languages: Armenian

Moreover, in languages ​​where gender exists, words do not always have the same kind! ‘’Book’’ is masculine in French, neutral in German and feminine in all Slavic languages! It is so disturbing!

2. How to learn the gender in French

For native speakers, it seems that the gender is learned during early childhood in a natural and unconscious way without posing any problem.

But for non-native French students, this is one of the most complicated thing to master. Even at an advanced level many students make mistakes.

Rest assured, the fact of deceiving gender does not block communication, and Francophones are used to foreigners making mistakes about it.

However, we must admit that Latin-speaking people will still have fewer problems learning genders, because of the similarities between their language and French.

3. Classification according to the endings

So how can you know if a word is masculine or feminine?

Even if it does not seem like it, there are some rules related to the words endings.

Somewhat, intuitive people may not be attracted by this kind of complex classification.

However, rational and scientific people will no doubt be interested in these statistics and rules. That’s why I’m showing them to you here.

Masculine words are ending with:

terminationNumber of wordsExamplestatistiquesExceptions
AGE1773Un garage99.66%Une cage, une image, la nage, une plage, une page, la rage
ISME1008Le plurilinguisme100%0
MENT794Un changement100%0
UM280Le maximum100%0
EME97Un problème96.9%La bohème, un crème
EU35Un feu100%0
IL122Un mail100%0
ING116Un parking100%0
US168Un busVénus
PHONExUn téléphone100%0
SCOPExUn télescope100%0
T1976Le vent99.41%Une forêt, une nuit, une dent, une part, la plupart
R1556Un déjeuner90%La mer, la chair, une cour, une tour +   all words ending with ‘’eur’’
ON± 262Un pantalon± 99 %

Feminine words are ending with:

terminationNumber of wordsExamplestatistiquesExceptions
ADE193Une limonade98.45%Un grade, une jade, un stade
UDE46Une certitude93.48%Un prélude, un interlude, un coude
TION / SION2067Une profession100%0
URE509La littérature97.25%Une augure, le bromure, le cyanure, le chlorure, un hydrocarbure, le mercure, un murmure, un parjure, le sulfure.
EURLa peurLe bonheur, un ascenseur, un ordinateur, un batteur, le bonheur, le malheur, l’honneur, le deshonneur, le labeur, un moteur.
ENCE / ANCE499une différence100%0
986La beauté99.99%Le karité
IE1070La vie99.44%Un brire, un caddie, un génie, un incendie, un messie
ÉE233Une dictée89%lycée périgée trophée pedigree musée
LLE438une ville95.9%Un antirouille, un arsouille, un bacille, un bidonville, le braille, un chevrefeuille, un codicile, un colibacile, un drille, un gorille, un lactobacille, un millefeuille, un pedzouille, un portefeuille, un pille, un streptobacille, un vaudeville
AISON72Une liaison100%0
ITE739Une gingivite94%Trilobite, anthracite, plébiscite, gîte, graphite, satellite, théodolite, comité, ermite, termite, granite, rite, mérite, site
ETTE327Une allumette98.5%Un squelette
CE500Une place89%espace crustace exercice bénéfice office artifice précipice dentifrice armistice vice service silence

4. Other classifications

We can classify some words according to what they represent:

Masculine:

 ExemplesExceptions
Chemical bodiesle cobalt, nickel, soufre0
Treesun sapin, érable, chêne0
languagesle français, l'anglais0
Timedays: le lundi, un samedi …0
Timemonths: ce janvier, cet août …0
Timeseasons: un hiver, un été, un automne, un printemps0

Feminine:

 ExemplesExceptions
Sciences’namesLa chimie, la grammaireLe droit

5. Difficulties

Some words change of gender according to their meaning. Here is a list that will allow you to avoid any confusion:

Masculin Féminin
Le mode d'emploi
the user manual
La mode des vêtements d'été
fashion summer clothes
Un moule à gâteau
a cake mold
Une moule dans la mer
a mold in the sea
Un pendule au bout d’un fil
a pendulum at the end of a thread
Une pendule qui donne l’heure
a clock that gives the time
Un poêle pour chauffer la maison
a stove to heat the house
Une poêle à frire
a frying pan
Un livre à lire
a book to read
Une livre (unité de poids)
one pound (unit of weight)
Un manche de hache
an ax handle
Une manche de chemise
a shirt sleeve
Un tour qu’on joue
a trick played
Une tour
a tower
Un vase à fleur
a flower vase
La vase au fond d’un marais
the mud at the bottom of a swamp
Un voile qu’on se met sur la tête
a veil that is put on the head
Une voile de bateau
a sailing boat
Un physique agréable
A nice physique
La physique et la chimie
Physics and chemistry

Voilà! I hope you liked this article and that French gender has no secret for you now!

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