- For Teachers
English is my 2nd language and it already took too much of my time and I never intend to learn a 3rd language, however beautiful it is. My opinion is, to have a good grasp of one foreign language is better than know a smattering of many.
But it's so annoying that English speakers use so many French words in their writings.
I wonder do all English speakers use French words a lot? Or is it just some people use them to show off their language skills and make themselves sound posh and elegant?
But why use "Fin de siecle" instead of "end-of-the-century"; why "en route" instead of "on the way",and "tour de force " "masterpiece"??
I know I shouldn't be complaining but I do feel a bit frustrated.
How do I learn most frequently used French words? Are there books or websites about it?
Online Etymology Dictionary), so it was probably in use a good deal earlier. It was almost certainly a fin-de-siècle* borrowing, dating from the times in the last decade of the 18th century when London was the main refuge for French aristocrats fleeing from Revolutionary France.
*Sorry, I couldn't resist it. The point is that using a Gallicism, in this case, evokes the history of the time. English is full of borrowed words, and they're useful in various ways.
BobK:It was almost certainly a fin-de-siècle* borrowing, dating from the times in the last decade of the 18th century when London was the main refuge for French aristocrats fleeing from Revolutionary France.
You come up with the most interesting titbits of information! I hadn't thought of that major influence -(only the years when French was the official language after the Norman invasion.)