https://www.duolingo.com/Suchiththa

Glad to know that learning English is just as hard as learning French

So, Emmanuel Macron just called the Prime Minister of Australia's wife 'Delicious', probably because délicieuse translates to delightful. Ah synonyms et faux amis! The man definitely has way more language education and practice in English than I do in French, so at least I can look forward to as many awkward moments in French, though thankfully, most of us don't have to make these mistakes on the international stage :D

May 3, 2018

14 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/JamesTPhillips

There are some good articles online about how weird English can be to foreigners and how we native speakers take it for granted. For instance, when using two adjectives to describe something, the order matters in a seemingly arbitrary way. If you had a small book that was interesting you would describe it as an "interesting little book" but not a "little interesting book." Why? Ask a native and they would just tell you that one sounds right while the other doesn't. Hardly helpful! On the other hand, if the book was large you would say "a big, interesting book" but not an "interesting, big book." Hang on, that's the other way around! Baffling...

May 3, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/P-Code
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Actually, a correct order exists. We native speakers just don't realize it until someone says them in the wrong order.

May 5, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/TrueThug

Because we use the order to convey information. "Interesting little book..." vs "A book of little interest.../There is little interest in this book...".

When English speakers hear "little interest" their minds are primed for a completely different idea. They do this priming subconsciously though so they probably can't explain on the spot why it sounds wrong.

As for your other example, I genuinely don't care about the placement of 'big'. If someone is in the midst of talking and adds in a misplaced "big" for extra info, it's not going to turn on the sirens in my brain.

May 3, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/angus390025
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English is definitely weird and awkward. A fellow was in my office about a year ago complaining that French had too many silent letters. I was rather taken aback by his statement. I gave him examples, in English, of words with silent a, silent b, silent c, silent d, silent e, etc. Almost the entire alphabet. (I could not find examples of silent f or silent q) And English pronunciation rules?! You can spell fish as ghoti in English if you want to. gh as in enough. o as in women. ti as in nation. Put it together and you have fish.

I told him that if you can learn English spelling and pronunciation, then you can certainly learn french spelling and pronunciation. As for grammar, that's another matter entirely. Both languages have awkard grammars, n'est-ce pas?

As for your post, for all I know, Lucinda Turnbull may be positively delicious. It's well known that Macron likes older women. I can't hold that against him. (chacun à son goût) If you want to pick on Macron, there are plenty of other reasons. Certainly calling Turnbull delicous is not the worst thing Macron has ever said, in any language.

I hadn't noticed this story till I saw this thread, but apparently some news organizations are having fun with it. Let's be fair : delicious simply means delightful, exquisite, lovely, etc. It's the sort of thing any politician would be expected to say about the spouse of a head of state. Moreover, according to Reuters, neither Mr. Turnbull nor his wife were offended. "Lucy was very flattered," Turnbull told reporters. "She's asked me to say that she found the president's compliment as charming as it was memorable." If someone wants to say that Macron has made some disagreeable statements, then I'd agree, but this wasn't one of them. There's really no faux pas here.

May 4, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/fox2000and
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Of course the Turnbulls were not offended. We are Australians it takes a lot to offend us

May 4, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Cleanthe3
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I heard that 2 hours ago , quite a funny moment ! ;)) His english is far better than our previous presidents 's but he can still do mistakes ;)

Even in french , the term "une femme délicieuse" is a bit ... weird...awkward... It's like you want to seduce a woman in front of her husband... He should have said something like 'a charming woman " (une femme charmante) , well if it's a good translation : it would have been more appropriate . ;)

May 3, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Davide660585

I also applaud him for "having a go". The best advice in learning to speak a language seems to be to just try to speak it, to make mistakes and to learn from them. I have made more advances in learning French by making native speakers laugh their heads off at my hilarious mistakes.

May 3, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/AnnaBibiko1

That is really a strange mistake, because french natives use the word 'délicieux' mostly speaking about food, not about people.

However, my french boyfriend pronounсes the word 'lower' the same way as 'lover', and the word 'message' the same way as 'massage'. I can't stop laughing when he says 'I've got a message from my lower'

May 4, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/MissSpells
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While the media is having a field day with this delicious faux pun, and I laughed at first myself, I then consulted the dictionary, I am of the opinion that Macron’s use the word delicious, as a synonym for delightful, is absolutely correct, if slightly outmoded, English.
https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/delicious https://dictionary.cambridge.org/dictionary/english/delicious?q=Delicious

Both dictionaries give two definations of delicious....in fact Merriam Webster gives: Delicious: affording great pleasure : delightful a delicious bit of gossip and list delightful as a synonym. As the first definition of delicious, which is in fact a synonym of delightful... according to the dictionary definition. The synonyms and etymology are also quite interesting. If we are all thinking something else, well, perhaps it is us anglophones who are making the faux pas, and not Macron, who is using the term correctly (if somewhat outdately) I think Macron... was making a pun on the words, and perhaps it would have worked better in French..but truly the joke is on the media for not knowing the proper meaning of the word delicious, in English! In any case... such a delicious man can do no wrong!

May 4, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/Michele129966

My parents had a friend when I was going up who used to always call us children "delicious" like we were so cute. Similarly, in our family when we have a cute baby or a little kid does something cute or funny, we often say "you are so cute, I could bite you." Sounds weird, I know. We are not cannibals in my family, I swear!

May 4, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/KevinReniere

Hey! We have the same expression in French. We say: « Tu es beau/belle à croquer ». No us too we’re not cannibals!

May 5, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/EuropeanBas

I like that

May 4, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/KevinReniere

I teach in a highschool in Québec and I often hear the kids say: tu es gyu (gou). Which means you taste good/delicious in a mix of french and Créole. Its a common use but I find it degrating.

May 6, 2018

https://www.duolingo.com/AndrisK.
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Degrading?

May 7, 2018
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