If you are learning French then cognates can make learning much easier. I look at how here at PumpjackPiddlewick

When I began learning French I quickly discovered that there were many words I already knew. Result! In fact there are many many words that are actually the same. Same spelling, same meaning, just different pronunciation. Yes, this is where you get to put on your best French accent and apply it to English words.

Let’s start with – anything that ends in -tion. Attention. Localisation. Familiarisation. Emotion. Completion. Navigation. You get the idea. These words are the same in both French and English, simply said differently.

Another ending -ant. Brilliant. Extravagant. Ignorant. Restaurant. Important. -ent too. Accent, Accident. Then there is -ture. Agriculture. Capture. Miniature. And -able. Habitable. Identifiable. Probable.

When words are spelled and mean the same in different languages they are called Cognates. There are over 1,700 ‘true cognates’. That means if you are learning French that you are starting with a base of almost 2,000 known words!

Additionally, it’s thought there are over 10,000 words in English that are borrowed from French. Many of these words we use all the time in English, such as ballet, encore, deja-vu.

It’s said to be able to speak a language at a basic level you need to know 500 words. So in effect, you are way ahead of the game in learning French.

Now we just need to learn a few connectors, pronouns and the odd verb. How hard can it be?

French Learning with (some more) Cognates

Fluent in 3 Months

100 French Words in 60 Minutes

Learn 101 French French Words Instantly

And if you are looking for French language courses in general, there are two I particularly recommend:

Coffee Break French (free and paid versions)

and the Michel Thomas Method (an fantastic way to jump start learning)

I have also had Duolingo recommended to me many times, but have yet to try them out.


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