Hi French learners !

This week I’m writing from my home country, Switzerland !
So as you can guess, I am surrounded by mountains, chocolate, cheese, and cows :heart_eyes:

So for today’s désambiguïsation I tought it would be interesting to learn about the difference between boeuf & vache.

The difference is pretty obvious, vache can be translated by cow, and boeuf is the male cattle. But the tricky point is that in French, we also use the word boeuf in the same way that english speaker use it to define beef, in the sense of the flesh of a cattle, ready to be eaten.

Example :
Ce soir, nous mangerons du boeuf et des haricots au dîner (souper in swiss French!).

Hope this illustration will help you remember !

See you next week :smiley:


And surprise surprise: the English word beef originated in the middle French word beof, bef and the mother of both is the Latin bos, bovis.
But when the word migrated into English beaf loosed one part of its meaning. Linguistics call this phenomena a semantic change and more precisely a narrowing of meaning.


Thank you for this precision @Francine ! :star_struck: