by Don  

There is nothing Americans like to do more than make fun of the French. It's not just because their language sounds as if it is being spoken by geese with headcolds. It's not just because they make so much mediocre pastry. It's not just because they like to go on strike for recreational purposes. It's not just because they once gave us a huge statue in a shapeless dress as if we couldn't handle designer clothing. It's because... they are French. So today's Russian word of the day is Франция France. There is only one France, thank heavens, so we usually decline it only in the singular:


Note that when it comes immediately after the preposition в, the в becomes во:

В прошлом году я отдыхал во Франции. Last year I vacationed in France
Вы когда-нибудь ездили во Францию? Have you ever traveled to France?

Here are a couple more sample sentences with Франция in other cases:

— Какой город столица Франции?
— Я же американец, откуда мне это знать?
“What city is the capital of France?”
“I'm an American. How should I know?”
Мы хотим ездить по Франции, любоваться французским пейзажем. We want to travel around France and enjoy the French landscape.
Между Францией и Англией находится пролив Ла-Манш. The English Channel lies between France and England.
Благодаря Франции и её престижу в международной политике и образовании, много французских слов вошли в русский и английский языки. Интересно, как от них избавиться? Thanks to France and its prestige in international politics and education, many French words have entered Russian and English. I wonder how we can get rid of them?


Comment from: John33317 [Visitor]

One perhaps can poke fun at the French for their military record over the past half-century. Or for idolizing Jerry Lewis. But mocking their achievements in the pastry realm? No way! France was and remains perhaps the sole global superpower in the baking arena, from baguettes to fantastic sweet-tooth concotions like the gateau St.-Honore. Can any nation’s ovens top such a broad range of mouth-watering achievements? I don’t believe so.

11/01/10 @ 08:25

Very funny! (très drôle !) How do you say “c’est la vie” in Russian?

Don responds: “C’est la vie” in Russian is «Такова жизнь». And the automatic addition to the phrase is «Ничего не поделаешь» “There’s not much you can do about it.”

11/01/10 @ 03:14

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