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Common French phrases that are used in English.

a la carte

ordering individual items from a menu

a la mode

desserts served with ice cream

au contraire

on the contrary

au courant

well informed or staying current

au revoir

until we meet again

bon appetit

good appetite


hello, good day

bon vivant

someone who enjoys the fun of life

bon voyage

have a good trip

carte blanche

having full authority or able to do what you want

coup d'etat

sudden overthrow of a government

cul de sac

dead end

de rigeur


double entendre

double meaning

en masse

in a large group; all together

en route

on the way

esprit de corps

group spirit

fait accompli

something accomplished

faux pas


hors d'oeuvre


je ne sais quoi

I don't know


not interfering

nom de plume

pen name; name a writer uses that is not her/his own

objet d'art

art work

pardonnez moi

excuse me

piece de resistance

absolutely best item or event

raison d'etre

reason for being

savoir faire

social know-how

tout de suite


vis-a- vis

in relation to

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