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Thread: French words

  1. Moderator
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    #31

    Re: French words

    Quote Originally Posted by Rover_KE View Post
    San fairy Ann.
    If anybody needs this explaining:


    What's the origin of the phrase 'San fairy Ann'?

    It's a deliberate jokey corruption of the French phrase 'Ça ne fait rien' - it doesn't matter.
    (ThePhraseFinder.com)

  2. jutfrank's Avatar
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    #32

    Re: French words

    I'm not sure what it says about me but when I'm at a French, Italian, Spanish restaurant, I'll always attempt to pronounce the dishes as I think they are pronounced in their original language, but only when I know that that is the first language of the waiter I'm ordering from. If I know that the waiter is a native English speaker, I don't.

    I don't know if it's because I want to impress the non-native waiter or because I don't want to sound snobby to the native one. Probably both.

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    #33

    Re: French words

    Quote Originally Posted by jutfrank View Post
    I don't know if it's because I want to impress the non-native waiter or because I don't want to sound snobby to the native one. Probably both.
    I would seriously sneer - if I hadn't been there myself.
    Last edited by emsr2d2; 05-Feb-2018 at 12:58. Reason: Fixed quote box

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    #34

    Re: French words

    Both of my parents pronounce the foods as close to the original as possible when ordering in restaurants. However, they have different personalities so I believe they have different reasons for doing so.

    My dad does it because he loves language and he simply wants to pronounce words "properly" (in the eyes of the waiter).

    My mum does it because she wants to show off and impress the other people at the table (her friends and family!)
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  5. Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
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    #35

    Re: French words

    Quote Originally Posted by emsr2d2 View Post
    "Frenchly" and "Englishly" aren't words.
    They should be!
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

  6. Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
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    #36

    Re: French words

    Quote Originally Posted by Do228 View Post
    I'd like to know if native English speakers pronounce words with French roots Frenchly or Englishly.
    For example: bourbon, croissant, entrepreneur, etc.
    In the US:

    bourbon = bər-bən
    croissant = crə-sont
    entrepreneur = on-trə-prə-nər or on-trə-prə-noor

    You'll find all that in any American dictionary. We hardly pronounce anything Englishly (though the movie Love Actually, you'll see that we say table they same way they do), and we don't pronounce anything Frenchly! (Except in southern Louisiana and northern Maine. Sort of.)
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

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    #37

    Re: French words

    What if I go to the US and pronounce these words correctly (the French way)? Would people not understand me or maybe get angry at me because they think I'm a wiseacre?

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    #38

    Re: French words

    Quote Originally Posted by jutfrank View Post
    How about cliché? In BrE, most (I think) would put stress on the first syllable. How about AmE speakers?
    klee-shay
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

  9. Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
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    #39

    Re: French words

    Quote Originally Posted by Do228 View Post
    What if I go to the US and pronounce these words correctly (the French way)? Would people not understand me or maybe get angry at me because they think I'm a wiseacre?
    "Correctly" in the US are the American pronunciations. But to answer your question, no American will care.

    Also, sometimes we pronounce French terms as the syllables would be pronounced in US English just to be funny. For example, c'est la vie is normally pronounced say lah vee here - similar to the French way of saying it. But to be funny, we might say sest luh vye (rhyming with eye and rye).

    My favorite Americanizations of French terms are place names. For instance, we pronounce Havre de Grace, in the state of Pennsylvania, havver dee grace (rhyming with space and place). I live in the state of Maine, where the town of Calais is pronounced kal-iss (rhyming with Dallas, malice, and Vitalis).
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

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    #40

    Re: French words

    My remark that AmE speakers respect French pronunciation a bit better does not apply to place names. Not far north of me lie the Ohio towns of Bell fountain (Bellefontaine) and Vur sales (Versailles).
    I am not a teacher.

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