Adjectives in French

An adjective is a word that describes a noun e.g. it’s shape, color, size, nationality etc.

They are used differently in French to how they are used in English.

French adjectives agree with the noun they describe.

That’s to say they reflect their gender and number. So a masculine noun will have a masculine adjective and a feminine noun , a feminine adjective.

  • Un homme blond        a blond man
  • Une femme blonde     a blond woman

To make the feminine form of an adjective, you usually have to add –e to the masculine form. (blond /blonde, grand/grande). But of course there are some irregularities…

French adjectives are usually placed after the noun.

In French we see the “thing” first then we describe it:

  • Une voiture rouge (it is a car and it is red )

In English you describe the “thing” first and say what it is after.

  • A red car   (it is red, and it is a car )

But again, not all french adjectives are placed after the noun. That would be too easy!

So, here is a short list of adjectives that are typically placed before the noun. These adjectives usually describe the “age, beauty, size, good or bad” side of nouns. Most are short, one or two syllable words.

French, English,
Bon, Good,
Mauvais, Bad,
Beau, Beautiful,
Joli, Pretty,
Grand, Big,
Petit, Small,
Jeune, Young,
Vieux, Old,
Nouveau, New,
Gros, Fat

You may have noticed that many of them are opposites (Bon/mauvais, grand/petit etc…)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

- French Intensive Course in Capbreton in May & June 2024 - 

These classes will take place in the charming setting of Capbreton and will accommodate only small groups (maximum of 8 participants)! 

Please click here  to indicate your interest in joining us on this French learning journey!

Merci :)

Interested in a French Intensive Course in Hossegor in September 2023?

Subscribe to our list and we will get back to you as soon as possible