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L’Histoire De La Vie – Learning French With The Lion King Posted by on Aug 17, 2019 in Music

The best way to study French is to do the same things you enjoy in English, just in la langue de Molière (the language of Moliere). Playing games and watching movies are great ways to make memorizing le vocabulaire et les conjugaisons (vocabulary and conjugations) not only fun, but something to look forward to!

Image from Pixabay. Licensed under CC0.

The new versions of Disney classics making their way to le cinéma (the movie theater) means more than a trip down memory lane for anyone learning le français.

With all these movies having a new chance to shine, all the catchy songs are also back on everyone’s minds!

What that means for everyone learning French is best explained with les paroles (lyrics):

Ces mots signifient
Que tu vivras ta vie, sans aucun souci

These words mean
That you will live your life, without any worry

If les paroles look a little off, it’s because the famous lines from Hakuna Matata are slightly different en français. To help show just how slight these differences are, take a look at la version anglaise (the English version):

It means no worries
For the rest of your days

Disney always takes special care to not only translate their famous chansons (songs), but also to make sure they’re fully adapted to la langue et la culture (the language and the culture).

A great example I’ve mentioned before is Le bleu lumière from Vaiana (Moana). It’s tempting to say la chanson should be the blue light in English, but the realty is a bit more complicated.

Lost In The Deep Blue French – Translating Le Bleu Lumière

It may be hard to learn why simple things like le bleu (the color blue) can mean such different things, but don’t ever let that discourage you!

Heureusement (luckily), fun songs like Hakuna Matana and Le bleu lumière are great resources for gaining a deeper understanding of these subtle aspects of French culture.

With Le Roi lion (The Lion King) back in theaters, I wanted to take the time to look at one of my personal favorite songs from le filme (the movie).

Et non, ce n’est pas Hakuna Matata.
And no, it’s not Hakuna Matata.

La chanson dont je parle (the song I’m talking about) is most iconic for its opening lines en zoulou (in Zulu):

Nants ingonyama bagithi Baba
Un lion arrive, Père
Here comes a lion, Father

No matter the version, that loud chant brings up memories of the first scenes of Le Roi lion!

Circle of Life – L’Histoire de la Vie

We can see one of those slight cultural changes right in the title of the song.

L’Histoire de la vie translates directly to The story of life. The new title captures the idea of the original fairly well while sounding better en français!

Take a moment to listen to la version française (the French version) of Circle of Life and try singing along as a way to keep studying French!

Voici la chanson avec les paroles et une traduction (here’s the song with the lyrics and a translation):

L’histoire de la vie
The story of life

Au matin de ta vie sur la planète
Ébloui par le Dieu-Soleil
À l’infini, tu t’éveilles aux merveilles
De la terre, qui t’attend et t’appelle

At the dawn of your life on this planet,
Dazzled by the Sun-God,
Indefinitely, you’re amazed by the wonders
Of the Earth, waiting and calling for you

Tu auras tant de choses à revoir
Pour franchir la frontière du savoir
Recueillir l’héritage
Qui vient du fond des âges
Dans l’harmonie d’une chaîne d’amour

You will have so much to see
To cross the boundary of knowledge
To receive the legacy
Coming from the depths of the ages
In the harmony of a chain of love

C’est l’histoire de la vie
Le cycle éternel
Qu’un enfant béni rend immortel

It’s the story of life
An eternal cycle
That a blessed child makes immortal

La ronde infinie
De ce cycle éternel
C’est l’histoire, l’histoire de la vie

The infinite round dance
Of this eternal cycle
It’s the story, the story of life

C’est l’histoire de la vie
Le cycle éternel
Qu’un enfant béni rend immortel

It’s the story of life
An eternal cycle
That a blessed child makes immortal

La ronde infinie
De ce cycle éternel
C’est l’histoire, l’histoire de la vie

The infinite round dance
Of this eternal cycle
It’s the story, the story of life

Translation from LyricsTranslate.

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About the Author: John Bauer

John Bauer is an enthusiast for all things language and travel. He currently lives in France where he's doing his Master's. John came to France four years ago knowing nothing about the language or the country, but through all the mistakes over the years, he's started figuring things out.


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