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https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Mizotte

Une rivière, un fleuve

Another insight mentioned that there are two French words for "river", rivière (f) and fleuve(m). http://duolingo.com/#/comment/30893

There are two ways of distinguishing them. The most common one is that a fleuve is a major river. At school children learn about the fleuves of France: Seine, Rhin, Rhône, Loire, Garonne and Meuse. Le Fleuve Bleu is the Yangtze or Chang Jiang.

The other definition of "un fleuve" is a more specialist (Geography, Hydrology) definition and means a river which discharges into the sea so it is not a tributary of another river.

The rivers mentioned above fit both definitions, My local river is "une rivière" by the first definition and "un fleuve" by the second. It is three and a half metres wide and about one metre deep.

You can use "rivière" for any of the "fleuves" unless you are taking a Geography exam, writing something formal or you just need another way of saying it is a major river.

August 1, 2012

5 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jolynnedougherty

Thanks. I like this kind of information.


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Abigale593030

thanks this is very useful


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/RileyRoo09

that's very useful, thanks


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Michael-111

Comme 'le fleuve St. Laurent' et 'la rivière Saguenay' - tous les deux sont dans Québec.

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