Unlocking French language: simple advice for avoiding faux amis

Kala Barba-Court - 03.09.2013 - MyFrenchLife.org

Illustration © Kala Barba-Court

Welcome to part five of our Faux Amis series. Which ones do you know, and which have left you trying to explain before?

We hope this will be useful to any French speakers – beginner or more advanced. Bon courage!

Chance vs Chance

The English word chance in French would be hasard, whereas the French word chance is (good) luck.

Préservatif vs Preservative

And, of course, the most famous one : a preserve in French is un conservateur,  not a préservatif – that means a condom!

Location vs Location

Location in English becomes endroit in French.  Une location means a rental.

Tuteur vs Tutor

Tutor in English becomes professeur in French.  A tuteur is somebody who acts as a guardian for an individual or it can be a stake for holding up a plant.

Dent vs Dent

The English word dent is une bosse in French (which also means a lump), whereas une dent is a tooth.

Do you know any other faux amis? Share them in the comments box below, or tweet us @maviefrancaise!

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Catherine Broughton

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