In French, even a simple word sounds so classy and chic that many non French speakers fall in love with the language. It also has some beautiful ways of getting a message across. For example, in French we do not say “I miss you” instead we say “Tu me manques” which means “you are missing from me”.
The hardest sound in French
The hardest sound for most people when learning French is the ‘r’ sound. It’s a great achievement if you can master that rolling ‘r’. Although I hold a Master’s degree in the language and have had many years to improve my spoken French, I feel I still haven’t reached the perfection of pronouncing the ‘r’ (“Err” in French).
Here’s how to pronounce that tricky French “rrr” by online French teacher Alexa
French spoken around the world
French is widely spoken and is ranked the sixth most universally spoken languages in the world. Currently there are over 220 million French speakers worldwide. It’s estimated that the number of French speakers will increase to over 700 million by 2050 with a greater percentage belonging to Africa.
At present French is the official language of 29 countries which form “le monde Francophone”- the French speaking world. It’s said to be the second most commonly learned foreign language in the world after English, and the percentage of students choosing to learn French is much higher in comparison to other foreign languages. French is also taught in institutes like “Alliance francaise” and “Instituts Francais”. They have offices around the world and offer courses for everyone – whatever your age.
As Federico Fellini said: “A different language is a different vision of life.” French for me and I’m sure for many, is certainly a beautiful vision of life.
Simran Batra is the author of “Apprenons le Francais” and “Ailes” French workbook series