Mangetout??  Why I believe any native English speaker can speak French without trying

I bet you can say the word ‘mangetout’ just perfectly. Of course, you might say it with your own regional accent, but it’s probably pretty well pronounced. By that, I mean you probably didn’t say the final ‘t’ did you?

You see, this is because English speakers can actually speak French without knowing it? There are so many French words that we can all say perfectly but don’t realise.

As a nation, we  (in the Uk) don’t have a great reputation for being good at languages. I apologise in advance, to any polyglots out there who can say otherwise. I salute you.

Whilst pondering on this issue, the word ‘mangetout’ popped into my head. I have no idea why, but it got me thinking about French words that everyone and pretty much anyone who is a native English speaker can pronounce effortlessly, without a second thought.

Of course, I had to test this out. After a few trials with willing family and friends, they all managed to say ‘mangetout’ perfectly. Nobody pronounced the final ‘t’.  That got me to thinking about other French words that we pronounce easily.  Here’s the ones I came up with:

Café

En suite (as in bathroom in a hotel room)

Rendezvous

Fromage frais

Cul –de- sac

Déjà vu

Matinée (as in afternoon performance)

Grand prix

coup

corps

 

Now, I am sure I must have missed some out, please share them with me.

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