There are literally thousands of words that are the same or similar in French and English. These are called cognates and many of them follow simple rules that will give you a ready-made vocabulary of hundreds of words. Only the pronunciation changes.

Similar in French

English words ending in -tion are usually the same in French

Situation, partition, information, station, celebration etc.etc.

English words ending in -ance are usually the same in French

Ambulance, distance, importance, arrogance, substance, finance etc. etc.

English words ending in -ble are usually the same in French

Horrible, impossible, adorable, flexible, visible, portable etc. etc.

English words ending in -al are usually the same in French

Animal, international, final, original, central, ideal etc. etc.

English words ending in -ent are usually the same in French

President, different, urgent, client, monument etc. etc.

English words ending in -ct are usually the same in French

Contact, connect, respect, impact, direct, correct etc. etc.

Change in French

English words ending in –ist change to –iste in French

Artist = artiste, cyclist = cycliste, dentist = dentiste, touriste = touriste etc. etc.

English words ending in –ical change to –ique in French

Practical = practique, typical = typique, electrical = electrique, identical = identique etc. etc.

English words ending in –ary change to –aire in French

Vocabulary = vocabulaire, anniversary = anniversaire, dictionary = dictionnaire etc. etc.

Cognates or words in French and English which are the same or similar are a great bonus to us when we’re learning French.  Try to use them whenever you can to increase your “vocabulaire”.

 

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Cognates or words that are the same or similar in French and English

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