Important French Phrases

As some of you know, I’m currently learning French. It’s an arduous process, especially since I took Spanish all throughout my schooling (I’m pretty sure I will always mix up “el” and “le”). Anywho, I’ve compiled a list of phrases, some that the creators of Rosetta Stone and Duolingo think are important, and more importantly, the ones that I think are important.

1) Le poisson est rouge. This is an EXTREMELY important phrase according to Rosetta. I might not know how to say “Where is the bathroom?” or “Help me, I’m bleeding profusely from my skull,” but at least I’ll know how to tell people that yes, that fish is in fact red.

2) J’aime le vin rouge. Here the color red comes much more in handy. Thanks Duolingo, you know my tastes….or at least you know that I like red wine.

3) Vous êtes seul. Now we all have to question our very existence. YOU ARE ALONE. Thanks Duolingo, now I need more of that vin rouge.

4) Il a un petit requin. This is probably the most important phrase I’ve learned so far. “He has a small shark.” Never trust a man with a small shark. Plus de vin rouge s’il vous plaît.

5) Sale. Look at that, I can joke in French. I might not understand what people are saying, but replying with the word “dirty” will make it seem like I do. Hey, it works in English, right? Now if I could only learn how to say “giggity”.

6) Rien n’ est éternel. Nothing is eternal. Either I’m supposed to take another good, long look at my life…or I’m just supposed to realize that I will never remember all of these phrases. Either way, Plus de vin rouge s’il vous plaît.

7) J’ai faim. I’ll end this list with what is actually the most important phrase. I’m hungry. Did you hear me?  I’M HUNGRY. Also, Plus de vin rouge s’il vous plaît.


41 thoughts on “Important French Phrases

  1. Nice choices! 🙂 Don’t know about their practical value, but boy do they make an awesome list…! Keep up the good work.

  2. You could combine them and make post-modern poetry:

    The fish is red,
    alike red wine I like,
    you are alone,
    but for his small shark,
    Nothing is eternal – except when I’m hungry.

  3. The only French I remember from high school is “Donnez-moi mes pantoufles!” and “Je te couperai”. Probably some spelling mistakes, but that’s “Bring me my slippers” and “I’ll cut you” respectively.

  4. @saracroethle . If you’re asking for more red wine the proper phrase will be “plus de vin rouge, s’il vous plait” 😉 .
    I’ve never really understood where teachers and other language methods find their sentences. Honestly. I learned sentences just as useful as the one you mentioned when I started studying English. Forget the red wine, I was too young then to ask for some 😛 .
    My husband said once that they made French purposefully difficult to learn for foreigners. Mind you many French natives don’t speak it too well either.

    Have fun though. And good luck with the learning process.

    1. Haha thanks I should have double-checked that! ;p I’m hoping once I know all of these silly strange phrases I’ll at least be able to put together some that actually make sense.

  5. I studied French for a long time – long enough to read Sartre in French and for some reason dropped French the next semester (correlation perhaps?!?). My husband hassles me and say that the French add extraneous letters to their words to keep printers in business. I think he’s just jealous. And unaware that when I call him “mon petit chou” I am actually calling him a cabbage.

  6. I can say “I am a pizza with extra cheese” in french, but that’s about it. 😄 It’s so weird that classes and language programs focus on such bizarre sentences. You’d think they’d at least have more things you could actually use in a conversation. lol

  7. Sara,

    I really enjoyed this post and I’ve ‘liked’ it, too.

    It reminded me of one of the newsletters I subscribe to that I wanted to share with you. I like this lady because she makes French fun. Although, I’m not currently learning the language I enjoy reading her stories. Her name is: Kristin Esinasse, her newsletter and website are called French Word-A-Day. She lives in France, moved there from America, I believe. Let me know if I can forward a copy of the newsletter to you or if you just want to check out the site without one.

    All the best,


    Sent from my iPad


  8. You have been lucky with Duolingo ‘I like red wine’ is very optimistic and could help you come across as relaxed, happy and self-confident.
    I am using Duolingo to learn German, and the closest it offers me is “The beer is cost-effective”.

      1. We’re going from school for a day. All we’re going to see is the Eiffel Tower. Hardly anything to be jealous of! 😉

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