Date of publication2010
Paperback ISBN-13ISBN: 978 185341 146 5 paperback only
Dimensions148 x 105 mm, saddle-stitched
Le or La
How to Remember the Genders of French Nouns
Is that French noun masculine or feminine?
Do you say LE or LA? MON or MA? BLANC or BLANCHE? One of the major problems in studying French is learning and remembering the genders of nouns. Because all articles, pronouns and adjectives must agree with their noun, it is absolutely essential to get the gender right.
Most French grammars outline a few basic rules, but insist that the only satisfactory way to avoid mistakes is by memorising the gender when you learn each word.
There is no need for this. Most of the French nouns you are likely to use conform to simple rules, or are easily remembered exceptions. There is one tricky area, however, but in general the rules will enable you to speak the language with more confidence and fluency.
The author has analysed quite complicated articles written in French and found that over ninety per cent of the nouns used were covered by the rules provided here. That is proof enough that this information is worth having.
The rules are laid out as simply as possible, and you are given Key words that will help you to remember each rule. There are only 24 of them – fewer than the letters of the alphabet.
Nouns ending in a consonant
Nouns ending in -MENT
Nouns ending in -ACLE, -AGE, -ÈGE, -ÈME, -ASME, -ISME
Nouns ending in -EAU
Nouns ending in -I, -A, -O, -U
Seasons, days, directions, metals, trees, measures, infinitives used as nouns, English words
Nouns ending in a vowel +E
Nouns ending in a double consonant +E
Nouns ending in -ISE
Nouns ending in -ANCE (-ENCE, -ENSE), -IÈRE, -OIRE
Nouns ending in -ACE, -ADE, -UDE, -URE
Nouns ending in -ION, -SON
Arts, sciences and trades
Nouns ending in -TÉ
Nouns ending in -EUR
Countries and regions ending in -E
Other nouns ending in -E
Words with different meanings according to gender
Typical words with masculine and feminine versions
Key words to help memorize the rules
How to develop a huge vocabulary based on English words
‘No more guess-work with the gender of French nouns! Deceptively small in size, this book is a BIG help for students of the French language, offering them clear, well-tested and easy to remember rules for using le or la with confidence; and to think it took an Englishman to unravel the mystery of feminine and masculine nouns …’
Catherine Pinchetti, teacher of French as a Foreign Language, French Communication, Cambridge, UK.