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English Grammar and Exercises for ESL learners.


FAUX AMIS  -  FALSE FRIENDS

(French-English)


Faux amis or 'false friends' are words that appear to be the same in French and in English,
but have a different meaning.

(Les faux amis sont des mots qui se ressemblent en francais et en anglais mais n'ont pas le meme sens.)




FRENCH ENGLISH Example
Incorrect Correct
Achever Achieve Complete / finish The renovation was finished at the end of 2010.
We have completed the programme.
Actuellement Actually At the moment, currently. At the moment I am revising my English.
Affluence Affluence Crowds There were crowds of people in the streets.
Agenda Agenda Diary I note all my appointments in my diary.
Ancien Ancient Former Our former chairman was more dynamic.
Assister a Assist Attend All the personnel must attend the meeting.
Avertissement Advertisement Warning The message was sent as a warning.
Bail Bail Lease We can move in as soon as we sign the lease.
Blesser Bless Hurt / injure He was injured in a road accident.
Bribes Bribes Scraps, snatches He overheard snatches of the conversation.
Chance Chance Luck Good luck! I hope you'll be as lucky as Tom.
Coin Coin Corner The cinema is at the corner of the street.
Commander Command Order He ordered food for everybody.
Conducteur Conductor Driver She told the driver to be careful on the roads.
Confection Confection Clothing industry He works in the clothing industry.
Controle Control Check Tickets are checked before boarding.
Deception Deception Disappointment His failure was a big disappointment.
Decevoir Deceive Disappoint The players were disappointed not to win.
Delai Delay Time limit/deadline We were given a time limit. Friday is the deadline.
Envie Envy Want / feel like I don't want to go/ I don't feel like going.
Eventuellement Eventually Possible/perhaps/if need be Perhaps/If need be I could send a fax.
Formidable Formidable Great/terrific You did a terrific job!
Fortuné Fortunate Wealthy, well-off The money was donated by a wealthy man.
Fournitures Furniture Supplies Julie is responsible for office supplies.
Gentil Gentle Nice / kind She's a nice person. Her remarks are always kind.
Grief (faire) Grieve Reproach Amy reproached Tom for breaking his promise.
Habit Habit Clothes/ dress The old man was wearing his Sunday clothes.
Ignorer Ignore Not pay attention
take no notice
know nothing
It's best not to pay attention to his behaviour.
Take no notice of him!
I know nothing about the incident.
Important Important Big / large There was a big crowd waiting to see the Queen.
       

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