As if the myriad possible translations of à and de aren't enough, these two French prepositions also have complementary and contrasting uses.
The prepositions à and de are found in many verbal constructions that look very similar, but the choice of preposition makes all the difference.
One of the most common questions from French students is, "How can I perfect my French accent?" Like many language learning questions, this one doesn't have a simple answer.
By 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.
When 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.
Some French verbs do not allow their indirect objects to be replaced by pronouns; instead, the preposition must be maintained after the verb along with the indirect object.
As 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 of quantity express how much, how many, or to what extent.
Grammatical 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.
Vous can be every type of personal pronoun, but its role as a subject pronoun may be the trickiest because of agreement.
Most French verbs are conjugated with avoir as their auxiliary verb in compound tenses and moods, and therefore do not require agreement with their subjects. But avoir verbs do need agreement in a very specific construction: the past participle must agree with the direct object when it precedes the verb.
All pronominal verbs are être verbs in compound tenses and moods like the passé composé, which means that the past participles must agree with their subjects - at least in theory. In fact, it's not quite so straightforward.
The three French verb constructions which include some form of être plus a past participle usually require grammatical agreement of the past participle with the subject.
The letter combination ai has two different pronunciations for verbs, though this is a matter of some debate.