Did you know? Posted by Tim Hildreth on Jun 14, 2022 in Culture, Vocabulary
I keep a file where I collect ideas for future blog posts. Sometimes these ideas turn into full posts, sometimes they find their way into longer posts as bonus content … and somtimes enough of them build up that I think “ok, let’s get these out into the world!” This week I’m sharing a round-up of these items in a little post I’m calling Le saviez-vous?1Did you know? in French uses the imperative. You can read more about it, and about the differences between the verbs savoir and connaître in the posts linked at the bottom of today’s post.
Saviez-vous que le jeu de société Risk a été inventé par un Français?2Did you know that the board game Risk was invented by a Frenchman? Originally called La conquête du monde3Conquer the world, Risk was first developed by the French filmmaker Albert Lamorisse (of Le Ballon rouge/The Red Balloon fame … you can watch it here.) before being licensed first to French game maker Miro and then to Parker Brothers. Learn more here.
Les quartiers d’Auteuil, Passy, Les Batignolles, Montmartre, La Chapelle, La Villette, Belleville, Charonne, Bercy, Vaugirard, et Grenelle n’ont pas toujours faites partie de Paris. Le saviez-vous?4The neighborhoods of … were not always part of Paris. Did you know? It wasn’t until 1860, under Napoleon III and Baron Haussmann (whose grand works we’ve discussed before), that these communes were incorporated into the city, growing Paris from 12 arrondissements to 20.
The English words gargoyle and dandelion come to us from the French. Le saviez-vous? The French word for gargoyle is gargouille and comes from the French verb gargouiller … which means to gargle!
The English dandelion is thought to come from the French dent-de-lion/lion’s tooth though today in France, dandelions are more commonly referred to as des pissenlits. The name pissenlit comes from the fact that eating the leaves of dandelions serves as a diuretic. If you eat too many pissenlits you are likely to literally wet the bed!
Aimez-vous les chevaux? Saviez-vous qu’il y a un championnat du monde de cheval … à deux pattes?!!5Do you like horses? Did you know that there is a world championship for … two-legged horse riding?!! First developed in Finland and imported to France in 2017, les competitions de cheval à deux pattes (or hobby-horse racing) include three rounds: la reprise de dressage, le saut d’obstacles, et le hennissement6dressage/choreography, jumping, and neighing.
You can read more about the history and the events as well as see some quite interesting videos from previous competitions here on the organizations’ official website.
Et maintenant … vous savez! And now you know!
- 1Did you know? in French uses the imperative. You can read more about it, and about the differences between the verbs savoir and connaître in the posts linked at the bottom of today’s post.
- 2Did you know that the board game Risk was invented by a Frenchman?
- 3Conquer the world
- 4The neighborhoods of … were not always part of Paris. Did you know?
- 5Do you like horses? Did you know that there is a world championship for … two-legged horse riding?!!
- 6dressage/choreography, jumping, and neighing
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