https://www.duolingo.com/Veronicatheboss

Fun facts about France!!!

Did you know that France is the most visited country in the world? Last year, it had 83 MILLION tourists!

Napoleon was actually above average height for a Frenchman.

Paris was originally a Roman city called Lutetia!

The French government gives medals for "Successfully raising sevral children with dignity." AKA, raising 5 or more OK children.

THERE IS ONLY ONE STOP SIGN IN ALL OF PARIS!!!

In France, it is legal to marry a dead person!

20% of France has depression, making it the most depressed country in the world!

Luis XIX was King of France for just 20 minutes!

Potatoes were illegal in France between 1748 and 1772!

The oldest bridge in Paris is called "New Bridge!"

May 26, 2017

57 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/jrikhal

THERE IS ONLY ONE STOP SIGN IN ALL OF PARIS!!!

AFAIK, the last one disappeared in 2016.

In France, it is legal to marry a dead person!

It's a shortcut formulation... but, yes, under very specific conditions, you can marry your promise who just died if you have presidential approval (which is based on several precise requirements).
Here to read more about it (in French, of course, don't read the English version :) ).

20% of France has depression, making it the most depressed country in the world!

Looks like over-evaluated (whatever the country). Would you have a (scientific) reference supporting those numbers?

Luis XIX was King of France for just 20 minutes!

Most likely even less. ;)

The oldest bridge in France is called "New Bridge!"

I think you meant "the oldest bridge in Paris. Indeed, Paris' oldest bridge is the "Pont-Neuf".
But it's not the oldest bridge in France (not at all). There are still bridges that were constructed during Iron Age.: See a list of some bridges in France here (in French, of course).

May 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/jrikhal

Thx for those references.
The more recent one (the last one) doesn't put France in the 10 "firsts" for Depression. ;)

May 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/LanguageButcher

Wow, l'âge dur fer. Pourquoi s'appelle-t-il le Pont du Diable? Quelque chose s'est passé?

May 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/jrikhal

From this page.

La légende du pont du diable

Le meunier des lieux, désolé de devoir faire un long détour pour livrer sur l'autre rive de l'Aber Wrac'h, conclut un pacte avec le diable. Ce dernier lui proposa de construire un pont en échange de la première âme qui le franchirait. Tout surpris le lendemain matin de trouver le pont construit, il chargea sur son épaule un sac de farine et y enferma aussi son chat.

Au milieu du pont, le meunier simulant la fatigue, s'arrêta, ouvrit son sac : le chat s'échappa et fila droit vers le diable, berné.

Dès lors, on raconte que des paysans quelque peu ivres rentrant la nuit de la foire tombaient du pont et se noyaient, vengeance du diable.

And from this other website

La légende

Il existait autrefois à Plouguerneau, sur la rive de l’Aber-Wrac’h, non loin de la chapelle de Prad Paol, un petit moulin... Celui-ci approvisionnait en farine les habitants des environs mais également ceux de Lannilis, sur l’autre rive. Afin de livrer des clients aussi proches, il n’y avait après tout que la rivière à traverser, le meunier était astreint à un long et pénible détour. Les abords de l’aber sont abrupts et l’homme était lourdement chargé. Un jour qu’il pestait plus que de coutume, il invoqua le diable. Sa surprise fut grande lorsqu’il se trouva nez à nez avec le démon. Le diable lui proposa alors un marché : « Tu veux un pont pour alléger ta tâche. Demain si tu le souhaites et si tu acceptes que la première âme qui traversera ce pont soit mienne, tu traverseras la rivière au sec ». Le meunier trop las pour réfléchir et trop heureux de l’aubaine accepte le marché.
Sitôt la nuit venue, le diable se met au travail. Il travaillait comme un ... damné, armé d’un énorme marteau. Lorsque le jour tente de percer l’épaisse nuit noire, l’ouvrage touche presque à sa fin. Il reste encore quelques blocs de granit à assembler. C’est à ce moment que le meunier, après une bonne nuit de sommeil, s’approche du pont, chargé d’un gros sac. Le diable, avide, se réjouissait déjà à l’idée de recevoir son crédit, qui représentera bien plus que la valeur d’une simple aumône ! Cependant, avant de poser un pied sur le magnifique ouvrage, le meunier s’arrêta et ouvrit le sac. Il en jaillit un chat noir qui eut vite fait de franchir le pont ! « Il est à penser que les animaux avaient une âme ». C’est en tout les cas ce que laisse à penser la réaction du diable, qui, furieux de s’être fait rouler dans la farine, jeta son marteau. Celui-ci alla se planter en terre et prit la forme d’une croix en granit.
Peut-être s’agit-il de celle qui est en place à l’extrémité du pont du côté de Lannilis ?

De nos jours encore, certains se plaisent à raconter que si des hommes viennent à tomber du pont, ce n’est pas parce qu’ils sont ivres, mais parce que le diable pour se venger les aura bousculés...

May 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Veronicatheboss

IDK, but it sure is a creepy name!

May 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/MarcD50

At least two mistakes:

Paris was originally a Roman city called Lutetia!

The site was already occupied about 4,000 years before Caesar conquered Gaul. When the Romans arrived, the Celtic people named Parisii were already living there.

The oldest bridge in France is called "New Bridge!"

This is actually the oldest bridge in Paris, 'Le Pont Neuf', which is an old way to say 'new bridge', ironically enough. We would say 'le nouveau pont', today. It was built between 1578 and 1607.

The oldest standing bridge in France is probably at least 2,000 years old.

May 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/LanguageButcher

Oh, that's why it's called Paris and the people Parisians. So would you say french has Celtic roots?

Maybe nobody uses that bridge. That's why it is still neuf :-)

May 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/MarcD50

Many cities founded by the Romans were built on the site of an existing Celtic village, town or fortified settlement, and took a Latin name derived from a Celtic word or from the name of the local tribe. Lutetia is probably no exception. It was later renamed Paris after the name of the Parisii, yes.

French was developed from the Vulgar Latin spoken in Roman Gaul. That dialect had adopted some Celtic words, which are still employed today in French, but the two languages are completely different.

The Parisians called the new bridge 'Le Pont Neuf' when it was built and the name stayed, because it was never given an official name. It could have been 'Pont Henri III'.

May 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/LanguageButcher

No, I mean french people. Do they have Celtic root?

May 27, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/MarcD50

Logically yes. The Romans did not kill everyone, and marriages between Romans and Gauls were forbidden, as far as I know. Later, the Romans left, when Gaul was invaded by barbarians. These barbarians and the next ones did not kill everyone either. So most people in France must have at least a bit of Celtic DNA.

Some Celtic traditions and the language were even preserved in Brittany. People feel Celtic, there. They have some TV programs in Breton. In the past, it was forbidden to speak a local dialect or language at school. Only standard French was allowed. Now, there are efforts to revive the Breton language (the French dialects are dying, though).

May 27, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/LanguageButcher

I don't know much about France. How many local dialects/languages are there throughout the country? They are all white, right? Do they have any appearance, cultural or accent differences that you can tell them apart when you see them on the street?

May 30, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Albert183320

To LanguageButcher: In france there were a lot of languages, not dialects, widely spoken until first world war. -Alsacian (swiss german dialect) -Normand ( bizarre scandinavian language from the vikings who took the place in the 10th century. -Breton (celtic language, may be was there before the romans? idk) -Basque (yes the basque lands are both sides of the pyrenees) -Occitan (first language to bo denigrated as "patois" but still used by some, occupes almost all the south of France) -Catalan ( it is born there in the 9th century, but it was not France until 1659, its also spoken in barcelona, valencia and Mallorca as main territories) -Corse (the language of Corsica, island of Napoleon, his father was a corse independentist)

ethnically there are no major diferences....but you are in the middle of western europe, so you can find high and blond people and black and burn skin people as well

June 9, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Veronicatheboss

do you already know English? You speak very well for someone who's level 8 (:

May 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Daniel5476

He is probably doing the reverse tree.

May 30, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/LanguageButcher

You live in what part of Maryland? I live in DC.

May 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Veronicatheboss

i live in severna park in anne arundel county. Where do you live in DC? I'm curious cuz I have family there (:

May 27, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/LanguageButcher

> The French government gives medals for "Successfully raising sevral children with dignity."

This should be done in every country.

May 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/C-2015

Very interesting. I learned several things here. Tks. I didn't know many of them. I liked it. There are many strangers facts about France.

May 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Veronicatheboss

thanks (:

May 28, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Saraheliz17

SO COOL! And weird!

May 27, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/AnnetteHer48405

Do you mean Louis XIX?

May 27, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Veronicatheboss

yup! thanks for the correction! (:

May 27, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/EmperorIguana42

Good facts! Have a lingot :)

May 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Veronicatheboss

Thanks SO much! Have a lingot :)

May 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/PolyglotPearl

So ... you both end up with the same amount you started with : )

May 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Rozmador

Well seen, Sherlock :P

May 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/PolyglotPearl

Why thank you! Just a tip: you would say: I'll give you a lingot for that, or I gave you a lingot for that, or even I am giving you a lingot for that.

May 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Rozmador

Hehe thanks for the tip :) I gave you another lingot lol.

May 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Veronicatheboss

you guys are so funny!!! XD

May 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/PolyglotPearl

why thank you, Watson adjusts hat I do hope you get rid of the mustache : )

May 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Rozmador

I give you a lingot for that.

May 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/PolyglotPearl

thank you again : ) but I really don't need lingots ... I've got to many to use. Soon Sherlock will be a rich man ; ) please, Mrs. Hudson, some tea! NOW!

May 27, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Rozmador

So ... we both end up with the same amount we started with : ) (See the reference?) :-)

May 27, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/PolyglotPearl

Watson! You and your blog. I said no such thing! And such atrocious names, like the 'study in pink'! Indeed I do ; )

May 27, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Veronicatheboss

Yup! (:

May 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/PolyglotPearl

Oh come on Mrs. Hudson!

May 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/PolyglotPearl

I like the last one best ; )

May 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Veronicatheboss

It's pretty ironic! (:

May 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/HasNeyn

I believe Japan is the most depressed country, not France. Other than that, reading these made me want to move there!

May 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/MarcD50

There are also probably many countries for which there is no data available.

May 26, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/LanguageButcher

The most depressed country is the most developed country. If you struggle to put food on the table, you won't have a prolonged period of free time to wonder about the meaning of life, how bad your life is, or that mean guy implied you fat this morning.

May 27, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/MarcD50

Well, you still have time to think in poor countries. I have lived in one. People still have time to think, a lot of time. When they are waiting for the bus for ever in the scorching sun, for instance. They probably think more than we do. But from what I saw, they are mostly happy. They enjoy the little things in life, and most of all: friendship. At least, in the early 1990s when I was living there in a very poor neighbourhood, when people didn't have phones or video games and barely watched TV, the best way to enjoy your day was to meet friends and talk. We all sat around a collective dish and enjoyed food more than people do in more 'developed' countries. They may be a little sad but they are not depressed. They have their family, they love each other, they have their religion, they have the sun, palm trees in the foreground, snowy mountains in the background, or other beautiful landscapes. They are not robots moving quickly in a huge concrete labyrinth, cynical bastards, disrespectful brats. Their society is not based on individual competition. So you are right, they are not depressed, but not because they do not have time for that.

OK, enough rambling for tonight, I am going to bed. :)

May 27, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/LanguageButcher

I don't mean they don't have time to think, but their concerns are often not about life existentialism stuff. The more time we have to think about ourselves, the more we tend to withdraw into our shells.

May 27, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Cody-Tran

hello everyone, I am learning English and I really need someone who can help me learn that, especially speaking skills! Can you help me?

May 27, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/kshulters

Hello, English is my native language.

May 27, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/Koopafro

96%of French high schools have condom vending machines.

Do you have a source on this ? Things may have changed since I was in high school, but I find this pretty difficult to believe.

May 27, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/lingolangs

Merci!

May 27, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/flamingo78910

i honestly do not know anything about france so bye

June 5, 2017

https://www.duolingo.com/flamingo78910

i am pretty sure i knew that

June 5, 2017
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