11 Common French Words That We Also See Used In the English Language And Their Meanings

11 Common French Words That We Also See Used In the English Language And Their Meanings

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You're a freshman in high school and you're deciding on what foreign language you want to take. Do you go to Spanish or French?? Well, that depends. Did you know that chances are you probably already know some basic French words without even realizing it?

Well, if not here are some words that are actually French that we use in the English Language.

1. Hors d’œuvre

The literal translation of this is "Out of work" but when used in English it is a usually small appetizer that is served as a bite-sized proportion before the meal.

2. Matinee

In English, a matinee is an early afternoon ( say around 2 PM) showing of a movie, Broadway show, ballet or anything else that may be showing in the afternoon. In French, it is similar to the word matin which means morning

3. R.S.V.P

This is an acronym for Réspondez S'il Vous Plaît and in English is often used when invited to a formal event like a wedding, it has no specific English translation, however, the literal translation is "respond if you please."

4. En Route

In English, this means "on the way" and both the French and us, as Americans use this a lot.

5. Déjà Vu/ Déjà-Vu

When you think of the word Déjà Vu, what do you think about? Well, the English translation of this is already seen, usually used when you feel like you're reliving a past experience. In France, this is used in the same context, but it translates to re-seen and more along the lines of say, re-seeing an old friend you haven't seen in a while and not the way we do in the U.S.

6. À la mode

In French, a la mode literally means "in the fashion". In America, when someone asks for apple pie a la mode they are saying they want it with ice cream.

7. À la carte

The literal meaning of this phrase is "by the card." However, when in a restaurant it is used to mean "according to the menu" in both the French and English languages.

8. Mardi Gras

Translates to Fat Tuesday and many people in New Orleans and other places down south celebrate this holiday to signal the beginning of Lent and is celebrated on/ after the Christian holiday Three Kings Day.

9. Sauté

Translating to jumped up in French. In both, English and French, when in a restaurant or cooking when the food is sauteed that means it was cooked in a pan with oil. In ballet terms, it is a jump.

10. Voilà!

In French, this term is used as an expression and means here. In English, we use it for the same thing.

11. Touché

In French, this word means to touch or touch. In English, we used this meaning as a way to acknowledge that someone esle may have a good point or good counter arguement.

For a full list of words and phrases, Click Here.

Cover Image Credit: Pixabay

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