French Plural(s) Tips & Rules: Stop Making Mistakes!

Bonjour !

French plural seems to follow a simple rule — but like other languages, it has its twists and turns, and tricky exceptions!

Even native speakers still make mistakes. In this episode, you’ll learn how you can form plural nouns and plural adjectives in French. Let’s find out the secret rules and the key to plurality.




Et toi ?
Do you want to know the plural of other specific words?
Which other rules or constructions do you struggle with?
What would be the plural of “un chou-fleur” (a cauliflower)?

Bonne journée,

Géraldine

Join the conversation!

  • You didnt mention “boeuf” & “oeuf” which are quite irregular in their pronunciation in the plural

  • I think I’ve seen the plural of puzzles written as both des casse-tête and des casse-têtes. Is the correct version without the “s,” as with des porte-monnaie?

  • Bonjour Géraldine! Est-ce que vous donnez des cours publiques our privées à Grenoble?

  • Can you explain the plural and feminine rules for colours, and describing physical descriptions? For instance, J’ai les yeux bleus (?). J’ai les yeux marron (?). Mes yeux sont bleus (?). Ma peau est noir (e) ? Etc. This is an area that I struggle with.

  • OK Geraldine, Now you’ve got me wondering – How do you say “Owls playing with gold rings around their knees in a field of cabbages and scratching themselves of course”?

    • Ahah, great question, Doug ! 🙂

      The full joke would be :
      Des hiboux qui ont des joujoux en bijoux et des poux dans un champ de choux

  • “Mon oeil !” in French = “my foot !” in English ..!
    In both cases meaning that we don’t quite believe
    what the person has said. Or does it mean something
    slightly different in French ?
    As Joan said in her post on this lesson, I’m a little
    off-topic here but it came to mind and so I thought
    I’d give it a mention.
    Either way, it’s a really fun lesson, and very useful.
    And … I think we need to ask for – des choux-fleurs.
    Merci Géraldine 🙂

  • Un chou-fleur, des choux-fleurs And I love them roasted with garlic and bacon! Excellent video Geraldine, merci beaucoup.
    In English we say the bees knees- would that be les genoux des abeilles (just kidding!)

  • I get confused when or whether to make possessive pronouns plural: votre maison mais vos maisons? votre demande mais vos demandes?
    And BTW des choux-fleur…je crois…

  • Salut Géraldine et merci! Une suggestion : tu pourrais aussi parler des mots qui changent de prononciation au pluriel, p.e. un oeuf – des oeufs, un boeuf – des boeufs. Est-ce qu’il y en a d’autres?

  • Thank you for your very useful lesson on plurals! Pardon my question which is a little off-topic: you used as examples, “un gros nez” becomes “des gros nez” in the plural, and “une grande vis,” which becomes “des grades vis.” I was taught that when an adjective comes before the noun, “des” becomes “de”, in the plural, i.e. “de gros nez,” and “de grandes vis.” Can you clarify this point for me? Merci!

  • “Deux arcs en ceil”, but “deux gratte-ceils”. I think the answer maybe that Gratte-ceil is a neologism and new words work better in regular forms. Otherwise, they sound too literal. An English example is “highlighted”. If you say “I have highlit the relevant passages” you give the impression that you have actually illuminated them somehow. That explains why you don’t have “deux grate-cieux”. The word could be invariable, but perhaps that is only to avoid the too literal irregular plural.

    • Actually, gratte-ciel is invariable for the same reason Géraldine said porte-monnaie is invariable. To muddy the waters more, “ciel” has 2 plurals: “cieux” in its literal, astronomical sense and “ciels” in its figurative sense as in “les ciels d’un certain peintre révèlent un certain sentiment.”

      • Tu as raison Leonard: Larousse dit “des gratte-ciel”, comme “des porte-monnaie”. Grâce à vous deux – je n’ai pas su le mot “le gratte-ciel” ou la différence entre “des ciels” et “des cieux” !

        “Deux choux-fleurs” a un son très agréable, non ?

        Deux choux-fleurs au beurre, ce sont mieux.

        Bisous

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