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It's interesting how languages are related. "Lance" in English is a short spear that is thrown. Also notice the connection to launch.
29% of modern English words are derived from French. 29% Latin, 26% Germanic and remaining Others. Link : https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Origins_of_English_PieChart.svg
You agree? Do you mean that you agree that "launch" is an acceptable translation of "lancer" or that launching a book makes more sense than throwing a book?
There is a clear link between "lancer" and "launch" also a clear link between "jeter" and "jettison" as illustrated by your example elsewhere in this thread.
Launch implies a target and a very deliberate action.
Throw is more likely to be used for a casual careless action.
English has many words that mean throw so I assume French has many words also. Is there a better french translation than "lancer" for throwing in the casual careless sense?
Fair enough - thanks for that.
I had realised that "jeter" has a much wider meaning than the english use of "jettison" however I thought it still had the implication of being "thrown from" or "thrown away" (jettison without the sacrificial element).
That is why I thought there might be alternative french words for throw that are closer to such words as fling or toss.
Nevertheless if "jeter" is good enough for you then it is certainly good enough for me. Thanks
Taking "extreme" contexts may enlight the differences between "jeter" and "lancer"
"il jette son vieux livre dans le feu" would mean that he disposes of the book. Jeter is not a delicate nor technical movement (careless).
"il lance la balle à son partenaire" means that the does it with the aim that the ball is caught. Lancer is therefore a careful movement.
Shouldn't it be translated as ''he RELEASES his book"? I tell you this because in Portuguese, which comes from Latin just like French, LANÇAR (''lancer'') means TO RELEASE or TO THROW. EX: Ele lança o livro (he releases the book); Ele lança a bola (he throws the ball).
Grammatically, "son" may be either "his" or "her". However, when the subject of the sentence (the one performing the action) is masculine, any possessive reference to an object of the verb will be understood as referring to the subject. I.e., "il lance son livre" = he throws his book. If you wanted to say "he throws her book", you could say "il lance son livre à elle". Elle lance son livre à lui = she throws his book.