Beautiful or untranslate-able words

Our friend, Stéphanie, thought of our blog when she saw this article on French words that resonate with learners. I see why! Her favorite is ‘ronronner,’ which is very onomatopoetic. You can just hear the cat purring. Still, I would not have picked these words as favorites. A former colleague thinks the word ‘papillon’ (butterfly) is beautiful. I can’t think of one I think of as more beautiful than others, just like I can’t find one in English, but I do often stumble across French words that English doesn’t have AND vice versa.

Two words French has that English doesn’t: ‘le lendemain’ (the next morning) and ‘même’ (very, in the sense of ‘that very day’). We can’t translate either of those words with one sole English word.

Two that English has that can’t be translated satisfactorily: “privacy” and “relationship.” I find ‘intimité’ and ‘rapport’ unsatisfactory translations!

As for the article Stéphanie sent us, le voilà:

http://www.babbel.com/en/magazine/favorite-french-words?slc=engmag-a51-info-favoritefrenchwords-fb&utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=cd_engall_gen_cx1_favoritefrenchwords

This entry was posted in French versus English, Language Tips, Reasons to learn French, Stephanie, Uncategorized and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s