Our Day 25

Immersion – 25
Adjectifs –Genre et en nombre
(Adjectives - Gender and Number)

• French nouns have both gender and number.
• To match the nouns the French adjectives also change accordingly in gender and number.

I. Gender of Adjectives

man woman

     1. Most of the masculine adjectives become feminine by adding “-e” at the end.


    No         Masculine          Feminine          Meaning     
1 grand grande big, tall
2 Petit petite small
3 vert verte green
4 joli jolie pretty
5 froid froide cold
6 chaud chaude hot
7 brun brune brown

     2. Adjectives ending in “-e” remain the same for both masculine and feminine.


    No         Masculine          Feminine          Meaning     
1 calme calme calm
2 jaune jaune yellow
3 rouge rouge red
4 pourpre pourpre purple
5 rose rose pink
6 sage sage wise

     3. Masculine adjectives ending in “er” change the ending as “ère” in the feminine.


    No         Masculine          Feminine          Meaning     
1 fier fière proud
2 cher chère dear,expensive
3 léger légère light
4 premier première first
5 dernier dernière last

     4. Adjectives ending in”f”in masculin change the ending as”ve” in masculine.


    No         Masculine          Feminine          Meaning     
1 sportif sportive athletic
2 actif active active
3 noctif noctive harmful

     5. Adjectives ending in ’on’and ‘en’ in masculine double the last consonant and add the ‘e’            mute in the feminine.


    No         Masculine          Feminine          Meaning     
1 ancien(ahN-syaN) ancienne(ahN-syehN) ancient
2 bon(bohN) bonne(bohhN) good
3 canadien(kah-nah-dee-ahN) canadienne(kah-nah-dee-ehN) Canadian
4 Indien(ahN-dee-ahN) Indienne(ahN-dee-ehN) Indian
5 Italien(ee-tahlee-ahN) Italienne(ee-tah-lee-ehN) Italians

     6. Adjectives ending in ‘-eux’ and ‘-eur’ in masculine change the ending as ‘-euse’ in                   feminine.


    No         Masculine          Feminine          Meaning     
1 heureux(uh-ruh) heureuse (uh-ruhz) Happy
2 travailleur(trah-vahy-uhr) travailleuse (trah-vahy-uhz) Hard working
3 délicieux (dey-lee-see-uh) délicieuse (duy-lee-see-uhz) delicious
4 poreux (poh-ruh) poreuse (poh-ruhz) porous

     7. Some irregular adjectives

          A few adjectives given below have very irregular forms in the feminine singular

    No         Masculine          Feminine          Meaning     
1 beau (boh) belle (behl) beautiful
2 nouveau (nooh-voh) nouvelle (nooh-vehl) new
3 vieux (vyuh) vieille (vyehy) old
4 faux (foh) fausse (fohz) wrong
5 doux (doh) douce (dohs) gentle
6 frais (frehz) fraîche (frehz) fresh

street face jacket

                                une vieille maison                       une belle fille                       un nouveau manteau


          1) un beau garÇon = A beautiful (handsome) boy
              une belle fille = A beautiful girl

          2) un nouveau manteau = A new coat
              une nouvelle robe = A new dress

          3) un vieux bureau = An old desk
              une vieille maison = An old house

II. Number (Singular / Plural) of the adjectives

     1. Most of the singular adjectives become plural by adding‘s’ at the end for both masculine          and feminine.


    Singular          Plural          Meaning     
fatigué (fah-tee-gey) fatiqués (fah-tee-gey) tired
bon (bohN) bons (bohN) good
grand (grahN) grands (grahN) big,tall
Petit (puh-tee) Petits (puh-tee) small
calme (kahlm) calmes (kahlm) calm

     2. Adjectives ending with ‘x’ remain the same in singular and plural.


    Singular          Plural          Meaning     
heureux (uh-ruh) heureux (uh-ruh) happy
faux (foh) faux (foh) wrong
doux (doh) doux (doh) gentle
vieux vieux old

     3. For some adjectives plurals are formed with an –x


    Singular          Plural          Meaning     
nouveau nouveax new
beau beaux beautiful
international internationaux international

III. Gender and number of interrogative adjectives

    English          French     
Masculine Feminine
Which/What Singular Plural Singular Plural
quel quels quelle quelles

IV. Putting the adjectives in the right place

     1. In English,adjectives always preceed the noun they describe.
        But in French most of the adjectives are placed after the noun they describe.


               English : An interesting trip.
               French: un voyage intéressant (uhN voh-yahzh aN-tey-reh-sahN)

     2.But in the following cases the adjectives go in front of the nouns as in English.

    Remember:         B-A-N-G-S     

               B- Beauty

               A- Age

               N- Number



               The above related adjectives will precede the nouns.


               Beauty -      beau/belle (boh/behl) = beautiful
                                   joli/jolie (zhoh-lee) = pretty

               Age -           jeune (zhuhn) = young
                                   vieux/vieille (vyuh/vy-ey-hy) = old
                                   nouveau/nouvelle (nooh-voh/nooh-vehl) = new

               Number -    premier/première (pruh-myey/pruh-myehr) = first, premier
                                   dernier/dernière (dehr-nyey-dehr-nyehr) = last
                                   deux (duh) = two
                                   trois (trwah) = three

                lack of it -  bon/bonne (bohN/bohhN) = good
                                   mauvais /mauvaise (moh-veh/moh-vehz) = bad
                                   gentil/gentille (zhahN –tee/zhahN-tee-ehy) = nice

               Size -           grand/grande (grahN/grahNd) = big,tall
                                   petit/petite (puh-tee/puh-teet) = small,little
                                   gros/grosse (groh/grohs) = large,fat,thick

               Note: When adjectives preceed the noun “des” changes in to “de”

dress building cars

                               de jolies jupes                          de belles maisons                      de petites voitures


                1. de jolies jupes = some beautiful skirts

                2. de belles maisons = some beautiful houses

                3. de petites voitures = some small cars.

V. Adjectives that take different meaning when they are placed before          and after the noun.


    No         Adjective          Before the noun          After the noun     
1 ancien/ancienne (ahN-syaN/ahN-syehN) former old
2 cher/chère (shehr/shehr) dear expensive
3 pauvre (poh-vruh) unfortunate penniless, poor
4 propre (proh-pruh) own clean
5 certain (sehr-than) particular sure
6 même (mehm) same very same


                1. un ancien collègue (uhN-nahN-syaN koh-lehg) = A former colleague.
                    un bâtiment ancien (uhN bah-tee-mahN-ahN-syaN) = An old building.

                2. une robe chère (ewn shehr rohb) = An expensive dress.
                    mon cher ami (mohN shehr ah-mee) = My dear friend.

                3. un pauvre garÇon (uhN poh-vruh gahr-sohN) = An unfortunate boy.
                    un enfant pauvre (uh-nahN-fahN poh-vruh) = A poor child.

VI. The colour adjectives always follow the noun.


                une jupe verte (ewn zhewp vehrt) = A green skirt.

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