And sel, being salt and all, is a staple—both in language and in the kitchen. You'll never look at these words the same again. Her BFF, however, comes up with snappy responses right away, which is something Barbery’s narrator admires about her. Take two (or sometimes three or four) homophones and make one single sentence with them. But was he a yogurt fan? Un verre. The word denotes trying to speak or sing and floundering, especially in a foreign language. Masculine, noun. This was obviously before the explosion of the internet and he liked the idea of people relying on what came to their ears to interpret his songs. While learning French with FluentU, you’ll learn to differentiate between homophones naturally. One French woman I met even feminized it when she couldn’t be bothered to come up with people’s names: “Ils veulent tous bavarder juste parce qu’un Monsieur Machin sort avec une Madame Machine...” We were all laughing by the time she was finished speaking. Language; ... Related words Same consonants Wordsmyth Dictionary Rhymes Similar spellings Similar Sound Synonyms Popularity. To remember the spelling of these, just remember the English word “lacquer,” the stuff you put on wood or nails that makes them shine. As for celle, the demonstrative pronoun, you’re sure to hear it, and even use it. Spoken, these two can get switched around easily, especially since they’re both feminine. Don’t feel bad, many a French learner has gone though this. It’s my turn to walk around the tower.). The image comes from the hunting of ducks, who glide in and out of water easily, but not when it is frozen over, making them easier targets for hunters during colder periods. Oronyms (or homophones) are words which sound the same. Train them ears! Oh spelling changes galore! (There is a lawyer who represents avocados.). If you can get these down, then your (ahem…you’re) going to be fine. cent — one hundred sang — blood sens — first person singular of sentir (to feel) sans — without, Sans sang, je me sens cent pour cent mort. © 2020 Enux Education Limited. un filtre — a filter un philtre — a potion, On a besoin de filtres spéciaux pour faire ce philtre. Use FluentU’s learn mode to actively practice all the vocabulary in any video with vocabulary lists, flashcards, quizzes and fun activities like “fill in the blank.”. Find more ways to say sound, along with related words, antonyms and example phrases at Thesaurus.com, the world's most trusted free thesaurus. If you travel to France and are down for sampling their cuisine, then you’ll come across du foie (liver) more than you’re probably used to. (It was hardly a war.). (To the contrary! This is another adjective corresponding to a noun. (One time, I put all my faith in foie gras.). Also the same as pronouncing a closed o in French, these three all make the exact same sound, much like the “o” in the word “cold.” Luckily, you’ll get pretty accustomed to au and aux, using them when you contract à and les or à and le (which is basically all the time). It doesn’t sound very French. Florilège – anthology. This is probably one of the more annoying sets of homophones, but we’re going to get them down once and for all. If you momentarily forget a word, don’t feel like saying it, or simply can’t be bothered, you can say things like: “On utilise ce machin pour nettoyer l’écran”. Luckily, we don’t eat both walls and blackberries! été — summer été — the past participle of être (to be), Si mon anniversaire avait été en été, on l’aurait fêté à la piscine. le lac — lake la laque — gloss or hairspray (or lacquer), J’ai oublié ma laque au lac ! Generally, prenominal adjectives that have distinct feminine forms are used in the feminine along with gens, while adjectives that appear after the word are used in their masculine form, e.g., ce sont de petites gens ; parmi ces gens nombreux. Ouch, what you say when you weren’t expecting that errant nail in the floorboards. You said something you were pretty sure you knew the definition for. (While drinking my glass of wine, I saw a green worm around the house!). Eau will become intuitive as well, and when someone asks for un verre d’eau, only one of these homophones makes sense. In this case, their anglophone twist on the sounds of the word played a role in how funny it was to them, but there are also French words and phrases that are funny to any person uttering them, whether or not they are native speakers. But don’t worry here too much. This is a set you’ll just have to learn (so get those flashcards out!). Mortgage /ˈmɔːgɪdʒ/ Je … Since été, the past participle version, will always be accompanied by a conjugated avoir (to have), this one is kind of in the bag. Some words seem to be deliberately funny, while others have just turned out to be amusing. When there are two (or more!) 16 Funny French Words and Phrases that Will Make You Laugh, Beginner's Guide to French Grammar and Word Order, Learning French Vocabulary about Body Parts and Movements, How to Approach French Spelling by Identifying Sounds, Endings, and Past Participles, Do the French Like to Argue? And yes, there is a fourth homophone here. Un verre is a glass, such as un verre d’eau (= “a glass of water.”) Le verre is “this glass”, … “Les désastreuses aventures des orphelins Baudelaire”, Informal French Flair: Using Filler to Dress Your French Casual-chic, 10 Awesome French Podcasts For French Learners, 9 Great Channels to Learn French on YouTube, 10 Tasty Tips for Teaching Yourself French, 7 Awesome Songs to Help You Learn French Through Music, 15 French Idioms You Should Know But Don’t, 15 French Slang Words Every French Learner Should Know. (Immediately after I arrived at my house, my mom asked me to do the dishes as soon as possible.). This one is just goofy. This refers to both the food and the liver inside of you. Un leurre, not as much, unless you suffer from a lot of delusions about how bad your French is (I promise it’s not as bad as you think). Although only used in the plural form, this word resembles the preceding words in that it sometimes takes on a feminine role and sometimes takes on a masculine role. (I have a microchip in my tooth.). Make flashcards with each set of homophones on one side, whether that’s two or three (for four you may want to break it up into two flashcards), and then the definitions of each on the other side. Trust your judgement on that; I believe in you. This is a synonym for truc. (If my birthday had been in summer, we would have celebrated it at the pool.). au — contraction of à and le aux — contraction of à and les eau — water, Au contraire ! This word means: without. You can rhyme with some of these! As you continue advancing in your French studies, FluentU keeps track of all the grammar and vocabulary that you’ve been learning. The important thing to consider if you do make your own flashcards for homophones is that you need to keep them within their groups. How to Deal with Structural Difficulties when Learning FrenchEach learners of French has different strengths and weaknesses. Laque is spelt similarly and has the same meaning, changing the exact definition depending on the context (hair, nails, walls, etc.). Aïe. Like some of the previous homophone sets we’ve mentioned, this one is rather simple to keep straight. Unfortunately, the accent circumflex on mûr and mûre don’t make a difference with pronunciation, making this kind of a tricky one. Unfortunately some very common words are spelt very strangely, so here is our list of 10 of the worst offending examples and a guide to how to pronounce them. la tour — the tower le tour — the turn, the perimeter, Attention! However, with bilingual subtitles and quizzes, you’ll pick up on not just the spoken language but the written language as well. Other French sounds for hitting would be “vl… In all reality, you’re likely (unless you’re using your French to talk about animals) to use the adjective version of this one anyway. First of all, the sequence of sounds involved in this verb is interesting enough, with two vowel sounds in a row that are distinctly French, followed by the French r, and an -er ending from the 1er groupe.      Il faut que ces tâches soient supléées par les ressources plus vastes. These two are pretty easy to distinguish from one another; you’ve got the masculine and feminine going for you, as well as spelling differences. Download: This blog post is available as a convenient and portable PDF that you Il y a plein d’eau aux eaux ! Je ne mets que le bout du doigt dans la boue. If you learn how these homophones sound, then the rest gets easier. It’s only supposed to be used for men (points for the … These have a similar meaning, making them slightly tricky. Niche // Many English speakers pronounce this word so that it sounds like “nitch” rather than the French pronunciation which sounds more like “neesh”. The letter u is more often seen with a circumflex or tréma, e.g., dû, capharnaüm. (I put only my fingertip in the mud.). But don’t confuse this with un comte, which translates into English as a count, like Count Olaf (read “Les désastreuses aventures des orphelins Baudelaire”  if you’re not hip to the reference). Confusing Words Vocabulary Today we have an exercise on homophones , which, as you have probably guessed from the title of the lesson, means words that are spelled differently but sound the same (They are sometimes called heterographs, but it's not important to get that technical). One quick look will give you an idea of the diverse content found on FluentU: Love the thought of learning French with native materials but afraid you won’t understand what’s being said? To remember un compte, think of the verb compter (to count). Then, for un conte, think of the second half of the verb raconter (to tell about). words ending in three e’s such as the feminine past participle of the verbs créer, agréer, suppléer . Some of these words are known as false friends, and are either spelled or pronounced the same as words in other languages, but they can have very different meanings: they might be harmless in one language but quite insulting in another. Celle refers specifically to a feminine singular noun. Check out these homophone quizzes (now or later) for a fun test of your skills: If you either want more of a challenge or something to exercise your brain with, then trying to make a sentence using homophones is a fun method. un mur — a wall mûr(e) — ripe une mûre — a blackberry, Quelqu’un a lancé une mûre mûre au mur. Benjamin Houy is a native French speaker and tea drinker with a BA degree in Applied Foreign Languages and a passion for languages. 10 Common Words with Strange Spellings. This one haunted me for some time, and you may have gotten to this point still thinking these two were the same word. Here are 31 French words in English that we use all the time. (Put your paws on the dough to make the pasta.). Did I mention the group of students who laughed their pointy heads off at the word deuil as they were adjusting to producing its vowel sounds? It never fails to crack me up, and it will make you hesitate before asking someone if they’re un avocat. A side note to this term is that the singer Seal wrote in the liner notes of his eponymous 1994 album that he didn’t include the lyrics to his songs with his CDs because he wanted to encourage people to respond to the sound and feel of the music. Tap on any word to see a definition, in-context usage examples, audio pronunciation, helpful images and more. Yeah, “Smack” is the sound of a soft kiss in French. Demonstrative pronouns refer to nouns that have already been mentioned in a sentence (as in “those,” “them,” “these,” “that,” etc.). The only rules are that you have to use them correctly, and all in one (if possible, a 140-character tweet-sized) sentence. (She who put the salt on the saddle will be punished!). Salaud (Sa-lowd) Bastard. aussi tôt — too early, as soon (as possible) aussitôt — immediately, Aussitôt que je suis arrivé chez moi, ma mère m’a demandé de faire la vaisselle aussi tôt que possible. “Devenir chêvre” Translation: To become a goat. Eaux is an old term for a spa, so you’re welcome to include that in your vocabulary vault! Whether this palindrome word is used as a noun, adjective, or verb, it’s pretty self-explanatory. See how Similar Sound looked in the past. But if you can get these down, you’ll definitely start noticing them in your listening practice. I like to think of le maire as la mère of the city, and as for la mer, I think of this song. “Aïe! iTools: Language. If you want to remember this one just by convincing yourself that owls are the coolest animals ever, then go right ahead. In English, you’re familiar with word pairings like “knew” and “new,” “their” and “they’re,” “guerrilla” and “gorilla.” They can be kind of a pain, but also pretty funny. There is more of a spelling difference here, though, and while they may be difficult to distinguish in a listening comprehension situation, plus tôt is a direct translation to “more early” or “earlier,” whereas plutôt is missing the s and becomes its own special little word for “rather.”, La reine — the queen Le renne — the reindeer, Elle est la reine des rennes. We don’t go “kiss kiss”, but “smack, smack”. (Without blood, I feel one hundred percent dead.). Yes, this really is the same as the English word excellence and their definitions are the same. So you’ll have l‘auteur with the contraction, but le hauteur pronounced as two separate words! French facial expressions – or how to speak French without saying a word! There are words and phrases that sound funny in any language, and French is no exception. Most Americans will find that these words come out to sound exactly the same—but if you're from a big city in the Northeast, then it's probable that the way you sound out each word differs, with "marry" taking on the same vowel as "cat," "merry" taking on the same vowel as "pet," and "Mary" taking on the same vowel as "fair." There is one word in French that uses u with the accent grave – où. J’ai une puce électronique dans mon dent. This expression conveys the idea of something being wrong, seeming incongruous, not sitting right. The noun sardanapale has origins in the Latin word sardanapalus, which refers to a powerful man leading a luxurious life. Now, to get your feet wet. Level. Aussi tôt/aussitôt. This is talking about a physical tip (tip of the iceberg, tip of the nose). Its definition in the Larousse appears as: “Qui suscite l'incrédulité par son caractère improbable ou incohérent : Une affirmation abracadabrantesque”. (She is the queen of the reindeer.). In French, they work the same and are just about as frequent. Start using FluentU on the website with your computer or tablet or, better yet, download the FluentU app from the iTunes or Google Play stores. We also participate in other affiliate advertising programs for products and services we believe in. La mer — the sea Le maire — the mayor (la maire is also possible in some regions) La mère — the mother, La mère du maire habite à côté de la mer. They really are a great resource, but it’s okay if they’re not your thing. You may already know more of these than you’re giving yourself credit for. Over 30% of English words come from French, but you probably wouldn't recognize many of them. Learning French becomes fun and easy when you learn with movie trailers, music videos, news and inspiring talks. This phrase is particularly useful in certain parts of the Northern Hemisphere at the moment, at it indicates an intense cold. These three homophones have pretty different contexts and uses, but be aware of them, especially since l’heure and leur are used all the time. When I introduce the homophones below, I’ll show you my own set of sentences (brace yourself, I can’t promise they’ll be good!). The saving grace with this set is that cent is an adjective, sang is a noun, sens is a conjugated verb form and sans is a preposition. These can be a fun and interesting way to introduce new vocabulary into your day and get you asking questions about why certain things are pronounced the way they are! 5 Minute French Lesson Anyone who has ever had a conversation with a French person will know that facial expressions are important. It’s good to have a six-syllable word for something so bombastic. This one is more for fun than practicality. You can always get a better handle on all your French vocabulary with FluentU, which is like flashcards in an entertaining video format that you don’t have to make yourself. SMÖRGÅS // … Remember the word abracadabra? words ending in three e’s such as the feminine past participle of the verbs créer, agréer, suppléer. Some speak with ease, Comparatives and Superlatives in FrenchThey say it’s never good to compare yourself to others, but there’s still plenty else to compare. Aussitôt … And with homophones being kind of a tricky vocabulary module, quizzes can be a great way to test your knowledge and learn the pairings along the way. Dépaysant. And the best part? FluentU lets you learn French from real-world content like music videos, commercials, news broadcasts, cartoons and inspiring talks. This words: a distinct place within a market; or a recess in a wall or surface. If you are learning French, it's useful to know some funny French phrases. Browse this comprehensive list of five-letter words to find your best possible play! There is a moment in Yasmina Reza’s play Art when one of the characters accuses his friend of doing this very thing during a heated discussion over the significance of a completely white and very expensive canvas. As a noun, "desert" is a dry, barren area of land where little rain occurs. The prenominal feminine adjectives that appear along with gens do not extend to other components of sentences in which they appear, with the exception of toutes and quelles when used alone or with feminine prenominal adjectives, e.g., ces vieilles gens sont heureux ; toutes bonnes gens ; quelles belles gens ! (More about French kissesin this article) Imagine my surprise when I found out “smack” was the written sound for slapping in English! Le bout doesn’t mean “tip” as in what you’d give a waiter at a restaurant (which isn’t customary in France, anyway). All of the French words end up sounding the same, and are then used to create a sentence that sounds like complete nonsense. You should be able to identify when someone is talking about their dad, but truth be told, they could be talking about their peer. You could say “Elle meugle” when referring to a cow, or “Meugles-tu ?” if you address a cow while petting it. You can also underline the spelling changes or draw little pictures or symbols to help you even further. FluentU takes real-world videos—like music videos, movie trailers, news and inspiring talks—and turns them into personalized language learning lessons. Turns out there was a mixup, and now you’ve said a few lines of nonsense or replied to someone with something that sounded crazy. Luckily, there is a way to tell a difference between these when heard. This is not mousse that you eat – pâté, chocolate mousse – but grapefruit. [ssba] Here at Pronunciation Studio we are the first to admit that English spelling can be very strange sometimes. If you’re really struggling to memorize vocabulary words, write each … The idea of incongruity is present in the phrase from Michel de Montaigne’s essay De l’expérience, “tout exemple cloche”, which he uses to illustrate the singularity of a particular example, its uniqueness, even in its position as part of a larger category. Pasta is made of dough, and though the word pâte is used in general for dough, you can still think of pâtes as a plural for pâte because you would have to use multiple pieces of dough to make pasta. (I forgot my hairspray at the lake!). The meanings somptueux, luxurieux, and princier doubtlessly draw from this image. French words that are the same in English. To yogurt? Don’t worry too much about la selle, as it will likely be referred to in an already horse-related context. “Il m’a fait un smack” – he gave me a peck on the lips, a soft kiss. Generally, “ the British took a French word and re-pronounced it according to English spelling rules, while Americans preferred a pronunciation that sounded more French, even if the word is still heavily Anglicized.” Interestingly, in Britain a lot of the American pronunciations are creeping into everyday usage. You’ve got a few ways to distinguish these: masculine vs. feminine, a definite advantage of context and the spelling is very different if you’re seeing them written! It’s hard to get un pair and une paire straight, especially since (don’t cry) the adjective form of un pair is pair (meaning even, as in number), and the feminine form of this is paire. Feminine, adjective. Thanks for subscribing! No big deal in the long run, but these situations can be avoided if you’d just…learn your homophones! Watch your language abroad: If you use any of these 15 words, people might think you’re a bit rude, or worse! Onomatopoeia is the process of creating a word that phonetically imitates, resembles, or suggests the sound that it describes. un avocat — an avocado un avocat — a lawyer, Il y a un avocat qui représente des avocats. Other Funny Phenomena in the French Lexicon 1) Words Ending in Three E's. French people are famous for never […] There are those who love to split hairs, fixating on the most minute details and losing sight of, or directing attention away from, the larger picture. Used with a complement introduced by de designating a quality, profession, or state, the preceding adjective will be masculine, e.g., tous gens de lettres ; les grands gens de bonne volonté. 1. The famous shrugging of the shoulders and the pfft sound are so typically French. In French there is a corresponding adjective, which means preposterous, exaggerated. On the other hand, if you pronounce it authentically, it sounds like “Voo zett dahn zun grahn davion” Ahhh, that’s better. The root word of une hauteur is haut (high), an adjective you may be familiar with. Some surnames, like that of Angelina Jolie use this French word. It’s even the common name for a peck on the lips. Once you have these homophones on lock, you’ll not only be able to identify them, but even use them to make French puns, play with words and practice your writing! Another word for sound. To help keep things clear in your mind, make sure you color code them with their corresponding definitions. Tu ne me laisses pas finir !”. aussi tôt — too early, as soon (as possible) aussitôt — immediately. You can use it on its own, for when you’re too … While some of that is just the fun of French, we’re going to greatly reduce your chances of getting into those embarrassing situations again by going over some common and confusing homophones right now. Guère is a great word to know, especially when reading. Jolie – pretty. Do you ever find yourself coming up with the perfect comeback – ten minutes after your conversation ended? They’re also a good lesson on French pronunciation; it’s a bit crazy to have words with such different spellings sound so similar. We can’t have a post about vocabulary without mentioning flashcards, can we? It is used as an incantation for  magic tricks and is spelled the same way in English and in French. If you liked this post, something tells me that you'll love FluentU, the best way to learn French with real-world videos. Homophones aren’t something to stress over, especially since we just went through most of the major ones. When one friend asks how white lines are visible on a white canvas, the other, who is incensed by the enormous cost of the painting which to him looms over all of its other characteristics, says: “Tu cherches tout de suite la petite bête. une chouette — an owl chouette — cool, nice, Cette chouette est chouette ! The English versions, whaddyacallit or whatchamacallit, are much less economical. To paraphrase Krusty the Clown, comedy isn’t dirty words—it’s words that sound dirty, like mukluk.He’s right, of course. leur — possessive pronoun (their), indirect object pronoun (them) un leurre — a delusion/illusion l’heure — the hour, Leur leurre est que l’heure est toujours fausse. (This owl is cool!). It seems odd that a fruit would have the name normally reserved for something prepared to have a smooth texture, but it is actually from the Dutch word pompelmoes – a big lemon – which explains the use of the word mousse in its French adaptation. Just remember that by paying une amende you’re making “amends.” And as for des amandes, those are just delicious. Here’s another tricky one for you. Found 158390 5-letter words for Scrabble, Words With Friends, WordHub, and Crosswords. While this may sound slightly off-putting to English speakers, many Germanic languages use the same word for “warts” and “nipples,” according to The Economist. From there, remembering this pair isn’t too bad. (The author is afraid of heights.). Click here to get a copy. The h in hauteur is what is called an h aspiré, meaning that when it comes to liaisons and contractions, it acts like a consonant. You’ve got an adjective, vert, a preposition, vers, and nouns ver and verre, making it all divers (diverse). Still, there are many words in English and French that are the same or very similar, both in spelling and meaning. This could be literally translated as “flying deer”, but is actually the translation for “kite”. (I would like to leave earlier rather than arrive late. Glossika sorts natural languages by structure and difficulty, delivering memory, pronunciation and fluency skills to language learners between any two languages. Thus, we say amours enfantines, but amour éblouissant ; belles délices, but délice somptueux ; orgues mélodieuses, but grand orgue. Then study…study…study! (Be careful! Or use our Unscramble word solver. Find words and phrases that can be pronounced similarly to another word or phrase. In these memes, the TikTok creator goes back and forth translating words from English to French on Google Translate. And just like that, merde became known as le mot de Cambronne---the ultimate French curse word. un compte — an account un comte — a count (nobleman) un conte — a story, J’ai lu un conte sur un comte qui a ouvert un compte. I’m not sure if the form of many kites resembles deer, but perhaps the flighty movements of kites bring deer to mind. FluentU brings authentic French videos within reach of any learner. After teaching French and English in South Korea for 7 months as part of a French government program, he created French Together™ to help English speakers learn the 20% of French that truly matters. But it’s a confusing set of homophones when you’re first starting out. This is an example of l’esprit de l’escalier, which the twelve-year-old narrator of Muriel Barbery’s L’Élégance du hérisson describes when she talks about not finding the right réplique at the right moment, but after too much time has elapsed. The post 19 Words You Never Realized Are the Same Backwards and Forwards appeared first on Reader's Digest. Ahhhhh! Speaking of cows, when you wish to emphasize something in French, you can use this word, as in the following sentence: “Le TGV est vachement rapide !” The question is, why do we say “cowly” for emphasis? Since we’ve launched into awards season for film and. Written, they’re easy to tell apart, thanks to the vowel differences! (You need special filters to make this potion.). While Americans like to say “to be driven mad,” … But, having Latin roots in the verb mugilare, this is in fact the verb you would use to describe the sound a cow makes. Since all of these are commonly used, sometimes you’ll have to use your (amazing) instincts. Though to put your mind at ease, unless you’re at a doctor’s office, restaurant or church, the best guess is fois, as it’s an extremely common word. can take anywhere. After learning all about gender distinction in the French language, you will be thrilled to learn that the following nouns change genders, depending on whether there is one or more of them: amours, délices, orgues. La guerre isn’t really at risk of being confused with the similar-sounding adverb, but hey, you just got a useful vocabulary word out of this! Or maybe you heard some song lyrics on the radio and thought you understood them. We hate SPAM and promise to keep your email address safe, Sign up for our weekly blog newsletter for a chance to win a free FluentU Plus subscription (value $240), Get regular language learning tips, resources and updates, starting with the "Complete Guide to Foreign Language Immersion" e-book. une amande — an almond une amende — a fine, Est-ce que je peux payer l’amende en amandes ? Quite the opposite… In French, a slap (une gifle, une baffe) is accompanied by a big: “paf !” (we say “et paf, une baffe !). For example: Though if you’re trying to remember how to spell each one, remember that filtre uses the same letters as its English translation (filter), just with the last two letters switched around. So really the example sentence could have been much more painful. When it comes to listening comprehension, they pose a threat. Present itself ( and if not for some time, I saw a green worm around the house!.! 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