Reading French for English speakers
Latin based languages share a massive amount of common and overlapping words. RobWords offers these 3 tricks for English speakers to scuttle through the French language. I find these kinds of tips super helpful for a casual traveler. As always, these are not hard and fast and some require some lateral thinking to make the connections – but it’s good enough to really improve your muddling through the French language.
- French words that start with an ‘É’ can often be replaced with an ‘S’. Examples:
épice -> spice
étranger -> stranger
épouse -> spouse
éponge -> sponge
- Vowels with a caret ‘âêîôû’ – remove the hat and add a ‘s’
Forêt -> Forest
Tempête -> Tempest(e)
Arrête -> arrest(e)
Hôtesse -> Hostess(e)
Hôtel -> Hostel
Hâte -> Haste
Pâte -> Paste
Hôpital -> Hospital
Maître -> Maistre
Côte -> Co(a)st (the side/coast)
- Replace the ‘GU’ that starts some words with ‘W’
Guerre -> Wuerre -> War
Guillaume -> Willaume (William)
Put them together and:
L’écureuil étudie guillaume le guerrier à l’école dans la forêt.
We translate as:
L’ scureuil studie willaume le werrier à l’scole dans la forest.
The squirrel studies william the warrior at school in the forest.