French Word of the Day

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Saturday, July 14, 2012

en haut, en bas

upstairs, downstairs

Pierre était en haut pendant que son père était en bas.
Pierre was upstairs, while his father was downstairs.

It’s very useful in conversation to be able to describe spatial relationships — the idea of where one thing is in relation to another. Today’s example is one such word that can help you do that.

In France, today is Bastille Day, or le quatorze juillet — a celebration of the anniversary of the storming of the Bastille Prison that was seen as a key symbolic event in the French Revolution.It is a day frequently celebrated with parades, parties and dancing. Learn more on Wikipedia.

See the fireworks over the Eiffel Tower from today’s festivities here.

Friday, July 13, 2012

peser ses mots

to weigh one’s words carefully

Il a pesé ses mots avant de parler.
He weighed his words carefully before speaking.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

une médaille

a medal

Il y a une médaille d’or, une médaille d’argent et une médaille de bronze.
There’s a gold medal, a silver medal and a bronze medal.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

la campagne

the countryside

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

la raquette

the racket

On se sert d’une raquette et des balles pour jouer au tennis.
We use a racket and balls to play tennis.

Vocabulary Section: Sports, Word of the Day
Monday, July 9, 2012

une fuite

a leak

Si vous avez un robinet qui goutte, il y a probablement une fuite.
If you have a faucet that drips, there is probably a leak.

La fuite can also mean flight (from something), in the sense of running away.

Vocabulary Section: Around the House, Word of the Day
Sunday, July 8, 2012

Dame Nature

Mother Nature

Dame Nature peut être cruelle.
Mother Nature can be cruel.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

monter dans

to board (a train or bus)

Il faut monter dans le train 10 minutes avant le départ.
We have to board the train 10 minutes before departure.

One of the easiest and most popular ways to get around France is to take the train, or le train. Today’s word is among those that will get us on our way.

Check out our Quick Verb Guide to learn how to conjugate -er verbs like monter.

Friday, July 6, 2012


n.m., autumn, fall

L’automne semble loin pendant la chaleur d’été.
Autumn seems far away during the heat of summer.

Other seasons:
l’hiver (n.m.): winter
le printemps: spring
l’été (n.m.): summer

Vocabulary Section: Time and Calendar, Word of the Day
Thursday, July 5, 2012


to yawn

Elle ne pouvait pas s’arrêter de bâiller.
She couldn’t stop yawning.

Most of us spend about a third of our lives sleeping. Today’s word is one of many about sleep and the activities related to it.

Vocabulary Section: Body and Health, Verbs, Word of the Day
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