À

French prepositionThe French preposition à is generally summarized as "to, at, or in," but it has quite a few more meanings and uses than that.

   

À vs de

French prepositionsAs if the myriad possible translations of à and de aren't enough, these two French prepositions also have complementary and contrasting uses.

   

Adjectives

French adjectivesOne of the eight parts of speech, adjectives are a type of modifier. They serve the same purpose in French and English, but they are very different in two respects.

   

Adjectives Functioning as Adverbs

French adjectives used as adverbsBy definition, adjectives modify nouns. But more than 30 French adjectives can sometimes modify verbs instead, thus taking on the role and characteristics of adverbs, including the fact that they are invariable.

   

   

Adjectives with Prepositions

French adjectives with prepositionsWhen describing someone as capable of doing or determined to do something, a preposition is required between the adjective and verb. In French, the choice of preposition depends on the adjective that precedes it, not the verb that follows.

   

Adverbial Pronouns / Pronominal Adverbs

French adverbial pronounsAs you might guess from their name, adverbial pronouns are caught between two worlds: they are pronouns in the sense that they replace nouns, and at the same time they are adverbs representing a place, a quantity, or the object of a proposition. French has two adverbial pronouns: en and y.

   

Adverbs

French adverbsFrench adverbs are descriptors: they can modify several different parts of speech, including themselves. Virtually every French word that ends in -ment is an adverb, equivalent to -ly in English.

   

   

Adverbs of Manner

French adverbsAdverbs of manner express how the action of a verb occurs. In English, the vast majority of adverbs of manner end in -ly, whereas in French, they mostly end in -ment. They are created from adjectives.

   

   

   

   

Agreement

French agreementGrammatical agreement is a vast topic - and one of the banes of French students. While in English we have a few pronouns and adjectives that indicate gender and number (e.g., he/him/his and she/her/hers), in French, agreement is found in 5 of the 8 parts of speech.