Frenchify Your Pronunciation Using French-English Cognates

Nearly 30% of all English words come directly or indirectly from French. It means English speakers typically know at least 1500 French words without needing to study French although pronunciation can be different.

More about French and statistics in my book BEAT FRENCH WITH STATISTICS available on Amazon.

Almost all words ending with -ty in English come from French (beauty, liberty, prosperity, royalty, majesty…)

A lot of words ending with -tion come from French and its Latin root (creation, corporation, occupation, reservation…).

Circumflex accent gives you also a hint of what is behind some French words. Circumflex accent shows that an S used to be here in old words.

In most cases, it’s an S that was in a specific position, before a consonant. Old written French kept writing the S while people didn’t yet pronounce it.

Except for the cognates, you can realize that many words still look the same:

  • Forêt > forest
  • Hôpital > hospital
  • Château > castle
  • Hôtel, hôte > hostel, host
  • Fête > feast
  • Bête > beast
  • île > isle

They are about 1700 cognates (words identical in French and English), I use them to teach my students how the same letters sounds different in French. Here are some if them:

  • abandon (nm)
  • abattoir (nm)
  • abdication (nf)
  • abdomen (nm)
  • abdominal (adj)
  • aberrant (adj)
  • aberration (nf)
  • abject (adj)
  • abolition (nf)
  • abominable (adj)
  • abomination (nf)
  • abracadabra (excl.)
  • abrasion (nf)
  • abrogation (nf)
  • absence (nf)
  • absent (adj)
  • absinthe (nf)
  • absolution (nf)
  • absorption (nf)
  • abstention (nf)
  • abstinence (nf)
  • abstinent (adj)
  • abstraction (nf)
  • acacia (nm)
  • accent (nm)
  • accentuation (nf)
  • accessible (adj)
  • accident (nm)
  • accolade (nf)
  • accord (nm)
  • accumulation (nf)
  • accusation (nf)
  • acolyte (nm)
  • acquisition (nf)
  • action (nf)
  • acupuncture (nf)
  • adage (nm)
  • adaptable (adj)
  • adaptation (nf)
  • addenda (nm)
  • addition (nf)
  • adjacent (adj)
  • adjectival (adj)
  • administration (nf)
  • admirable (adj)
  • admiration (nf) admission

Find the complete list of cognates in my book BEAT FRENCH WITH STATISTICS available on Amazon here.

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