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I speak French but French what?


Chancer
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A posting in the employment sub forum which will probably be removed drove me to ask this question that has always confused me.

 

It said:

 

Votre langue maternelle est le français?

 

And I thought should that be Française (langue) or does the maternelle follow the feminin la langue?

 

Parlez-vous Français is always said and not ? parlez_vous Française? so what is the objet masculin (if thats the correct term) if it isn't la langue?

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Yes. Langue is féminine (la langue) so it takes "maternelle" .

"Le français" because it is 'The French" (a separate noun) not 'french'  an adjective.

There is the phrase 'La langue française", but there it means 'french' and has to agree with 'langue'

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The problem for me is having had no education in English grammar.

 

I dont know what a seperate noun is, I dont think you mean "the French" as in the French as a race as that would be les Françaises, its not "the French letter/language/whatever as it does not agree with the gender.

 

So what is "the French" or is it me getting hung up with my English logic?

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The French as in the French people is les français as the English people is les anglais.

Remember that the masculine is used when there is a mixture of genders, so males, females, trans, whatever all treated as masculine[:)]

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Thanks BritBret, I had worked that one out some while back and it has always confused me.

 

The French being masculin or feminin has had my sub-conscious brain working overtime every time I say it, I say it correctly but the brain wants to know why and resolve the enigma. plenty of people can explain it either "c'est comme ça!" or in grammatical terms which I dont understand, finally when it sinks in it is a light bumb moment[I]

 

It was Mints explanation that gave me the [I] this time, that and my Freudien slip of writing Les Francaises which I would not say in conversation.

 

Am I right in saying one could say or write Les Francaises if referring to an all female group? Say a womans hockey team in an international tournament?

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[quote user="Chancer"]

Am I right in saying one could say or write Les Francaises if referring to an all female group? Say a womans hockey team in an international tournament?

[/quote]

Beh oui, Chance, les francaises over there all playing hockey!

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Chancer wrote,

That would have to be feminine then

Une maladie mentale

Very good, but seriously, you should not mock the mentally ill. If they wish to believe that by hacking off parts of their bodies, or sticking bits of plastic on them they can somehow change gender, then good for them. For other people to try to go along with this insanity and encourage them is just plain cruel.

On the other hand, it sure does provide great entertainment for the rest of us. ;-)
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[quote user="Chancer"]

Woof? [8-)]

 

Ouaf!! [:D]

 

I believe you if you are speaking of one specific female dog its correct to use the feminin chienne. - Une chienne chauffée [;-)]

 

[/quote]

Decades ago when travelling through the south of France on the way to Italy we saw a sign advertising, 'Toast Warm Dogs'.
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Might as well post it Under my own thread, the title is close enough.

 

All this advice about you must learn French to survive or thrive in France, I am beginning to think quite the opposite now.

 

Tonight I have 2 german customers, 2 Polish Germans, 4 Dutch and a Spanish guy, none of them speak French and all of them either chose chez Chancer because English is spoken or they are pleased and surprised to find that I do.

 

My conversation with the dutch lady when she booked was in French but I could sense here hesitancy so asked if she wanted to speak English and she was very pleased.

 

Spanish guy has no French and just a few words of English but the Spanish I retained plus sign language was enough, and perhaps that is the key, learning how to communicate with little or no knowledge of the language, I am getting plenty of practice at that, those who only do business with their own nationality have real problems and can get frustrated and leave a bad impression.

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