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Recommended for vous Posted by on Aug 14, 2018 in Culture, Grammar, Literature, Vocabulary

Back at the end of mai (May) / début juin (start of June) I shared a couple of contes (stories, short tales) that I found online. I shared them both because they had some good vocabulary and because I was fascinated by the morality they (attempted) to share. Both tales reflected both a simpler and a more simplistic view of la bonne conduite (good/proper behavior) for boys and girls of a certain time.

In digging deeper into the original source text, I found two more contes que je voudrais partager avec vous (tales that I would like to share with you). This week we’ll look at some more advice pour les garçons (for the boys).

Le conseil* / The recommendation

Si tu veux être aimé de tout le monde, mon fils,
If you want to be liked by everyone, my son,
ne répète jamais rien de ce que tu entends dire,
Don’t ever repeat what you hear said / what you over hear,
et ne parle pas de ce que tu vois faire à chacun.
And don’t speak about what you see people do to each other.
On fuit l’enfant qui rapporte les choses qu’il a entendues,
People flee from a child who repeats what he’s heard/who tattles
et l’on se tait aussitôt qu’on le voit paraître;
And as soon as one sees them, they quiet down;
ses ** parents même s’en méfient, et il est délaissé par tous.
Even their parents are wary, and he is left (alone) by all.
This story comes from Project Gutenberg, a source of free digital books. You can learn more and find French stories and more on your own here.

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* I’ve translated conseil as recommendation, but it can also mean advice, and also council (both in the figurative sense and literal).

Photo credit [CC0] by Kat Jayne from Pexels

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About the Author: Tim Hildreth

Lise: Maybe not always. Paris has ways of making people forget. / Jerry: Paris? No, not this city. It's too real and too beautiful. It never lets you forget anything. It reaches in and opens you wide, and you stay that way. / An American in Paris