Author Topic: English vs French. Languages words colloquial expressions and such like  (Read 2894 times)

ALAIN DELASSUS

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Carl, Benjamin. Language and especially vocabulary keeps on changing and evolving; each generation creates its proper words and expressions let alone slang. On fb when I comment and reply  to my AMTP's friends that there are mostly under 40 I often use old words and colloquial expressions my parents used  when I was a youngster just for the fun.  Do you still say or use the verb to dig meaning to look at or to like something or understand and the expression down the road a piece or to flee the coop in French "prendre la clĂ© des champs" or the adverb doggone all terms I heard when listening to rock'n roll in the sixties. BTW what does the expression" to rock the house" mean ? is it a byword for "to make it big"  meaning a big success.

James Patten

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"Rock the house" sort of refers to a party with loud music, or other loud, boisterous gathering. 

Keith Taylor

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"Rock the house" sort of refers to a party with loud music, or other loud, boisterous gathering.
Originally it referred to a boisterous crowd at a venue like a theater.

Keith

ALAIN DELASSUS

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Thank you James and Keith. In French we have two colloquial expressions that mean to be tremendously successful The first one is "casser la baraque" pretty much like to bring the house down and the second one is "faire un malheur" meaning word for word to cause a tragedy pretty much like in English to make a killing or to make a great or smashed hit.

ALAIN DELASSUS

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Re: English vs French. Languages words colloquial expressions and such like
« Reply #34 on: August 23, 2021, 07:07:16 AM »
Something funny French people pronounce Wi-Fi like the adjective whiffy.

Jeff Schumaker

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Re: English vs French. Languages words colloquial expressions and such like
« Reply #35 on: August 23, 2021, 10:51:29 AM »
Alain,

I wouldn't be surprised if some Americans do as well.

Jeff S.
Hey Rocky, watch me pull a moose trout out of my hat.

Graham Buxton

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Re: English vs French. Languages words colloquial expressions and such like
« Reply #36 on: August 23, 2021, 11:06:51 AM »
There are times that I pronounce it as Aaarrrrggh!  ::) ;)
Graham

ALAIN DELASSUS

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Re: English vs French. Languages words colloquial expressions and such like
« Reply #37 on: August 23, 2021, 12:55:13 PM »
Finally  if i'm not mistaken as Wi-Fi means wired fidelity it should be pronounced like why- fi or maybe like Graham does.

Benjamin Richards

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Re: English vs French. Languages words colloquial expressions and such like
« Reply #38 on: August 23, 2021, 03:18:46 PM »
You would think it means that, but that's a case of folk etymology. It never officially stood for anything, being made up by a marketing firm, but some suspect it was derived from the then-commonplace abbreviation "Hi-Fi" which indeed did stand for "High Fidelity", in reference to audio equipment. In that respect, one would expect pronunciation to be "High-Figh" and that is what I hear most often in the US.

Some folks I know pronounce it "wee-fee" but only in a facetious sense.

French speakers (and many other Europeans for that matter!) could certainly be forgiven for rendering Wi-Fi as "wee-fee" or "whiffy"; it's got one vowel, must be a monophthong! English does love to wrap diphthongs in single-glyph packages.

ALAIN DELASSUS

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Re: English vs French. Languages words colloquial expressions and such like
« Reply #39 on: August 25, 2021, 07:40:51 AM »
 Thank you Benjamin for your explanation.The fact remains that the pronunciation of English words is more tricky for a French native speaker than the German words. I learned both at highschool. As regards French I dont know of course if it is a difficult language to pronounce. Anyway those who speak a foreign language keep more or less the accent of their mother tongue. Funnily enough the words I found very hard to pronounce properly in English are those that evolve from Latin and French and God knows there are many of them in my dictionnary especially in the medical vocabulary that may unfortunately be useful when you travel.