Introduction to French: Lesson 3

The French word for am (in I am) is suis.


?I am French.|Je suis français.

You only use le when you talk about the French language (and not about you being French) so there is no le.

Try some more:

?I am not French.|Je ne suis pas français.

French for American is american.


?I am American.|Je suis american.

Truth is, this French, American, English or whatever only works if you are a man.

If you are a woman, you add e.

It’s a bit like as if you were saying I’m an Englishman or you’re an Englishman. It wouldn’t go if you are a woman: you would have to say you’re an Englishwoman in that case. Same with anglais.

If you are a woman, how would you say:

?I am English.|Je suis anglaise.

You add that e. Because of that, the pronunciation changes and you pronounce that last s whereas you didn’t before.

How would you say as a woman:

?I am american.|Je suis americaine.

If you wanted to ask a question, you would have two ways to do it. There is the okay way and the cool way.

First, in the okay way, you do just like you do in English: you invert the word order. So you ask: are-you French ? instead of saying you are French.

A small yet interesting point to note is that you actually have a space before the question sign in French.

Ask a question to a man:

?Are you French?|Es-tu français ?

If you woke up after a coma, you could ask:

?Am I here?|Suis-je ici ?

That was the okay way. For the cool way, you have to ask one extra word:

The French word for what is que.

How would you ask:

?Is this that...|Est-ce que ?

Exactly that you can say in front of phrases to make them into a question. For example, if you want to ask are you American? you literally ask is this that you are American?. Try asking that (to a woman):

?Are you American?|Est-ce que tu es americane ?

This est-ce que sounds pretty cool to me so that’s why I call it the cool way. Moreover, this is very useful because you use it when you want to ask people what they do.

The word que not only means that but it also means what.

If you wanted to ask what do you do, you would ask what is this that you do. You also use a contraction between the first que and est-ce. Try asking:

?What do you speak?|Qu’est-ce que tu parles ?

You could say that it’s a lot of words but it kind of makes the language look cool when written.

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