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67 French words and phrases you need to talk about the weather

PUBLISHED: 09:08 23 February 2017 | UPDATED: 10:08 06 March 2017

Talking about the weather can be a great ice-breaker (no pun intended) ©anyaberkut-Thinkstockphotos

Talking about the weather can be a great ice-breaker (no pun intended) ©anyaberkut-Thinkstockphotos


From understanding a weather report to knowing what the forecast will be, here is the essential vocabulary to talk about the weather in France

The elements

La météo or le temps - The weather

La chaleur - The heat

Le froid - The cold

Le soleil - The sun

La pluie - Rain

La neige - Snow

La grêle - Hail

Le gel - Ice

Le vent - Wind

La brume - Mist

Flocons - Snowflakes

Les nuages - Clouds

Verglas - Black ice

Brouillard - Fog

Un orage, une tempête - A storm

La foudre - Lightning

Le tonnerre - Thunder

Des rafales de vent - Blustery wind

Une brise - Breeze

La rosée - Dew

La sécheresse - Drought

Inondations - Floods


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Understanding a weather forecast

Un bulletin météo - A weather report

Les prévisions - A forecast

Précipitations - Rainfall

Averses - Rain showers

Chutes de neige - Snowfall

Gelées matinales - Morning frost

Eclaircie - Sunny spell

Vague de froid - A cold snap

Une canicule - A heatwave

Des vents violents, des bourrasques - strong winds, gales

Hot - Chaud

Frais - Fresh

Ensoleillé - Sunny

Nuageux - Cloudy

Orageux - Stormy

Un temps sec - Dry weather

Un temps couvert - Overcast


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Useful phrases

Il fait quel temps dehors? - What’s the weather like?

Le soleil brille - The sun is shining

Il fait beau - It’s nice outside

Il fait mauvais - It’s nasty outside

Il fait chaud - It’s hot

Il fait froid - It’s cold

Il fait frais - It’s fresh

Il pleut - It’s raining

Il neige - It’s snowing

Il grêle - It’s hailing

Il y a du brouillard - It’s foggy

Il y a de l’orage - It’s stormy

Il y a du verglas sur les routes - There’s ice on the roads

Il y a du vent - It’s windy

Etre bouillant - To be boiling hot

Etre trempé - To be drenched


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French weather expressions

Il pleut des cordes - It’s raining cats and dogs

Il fait frisquet! - It’s chilly!

C’est le déluge - It’s a deluge

C’est une purée de pois - It’s a pea souper

Il fait un froid de canard - (‘It’s duck cold’) It’s freezing cold

Il pleut comme une vache qui pisse - (‘It’s raining like a peeing cow’) It’s pouring with rain

Il fait un temps de chien - (‘A dog’s weather’) Horrible weather

Un soleil de plomb - (‘A led sun’)Blazing sun

Un vent à décorner les boeufs - (‘A wind strong enough to dehorn bulls’) Howling wind

Etre trempé jusqu’aux os - To be soaked to the skin

Tomber des hallebardes - (‘Falling halberds’) It’s pouring

Il gêle à pierre fendre - (‘Frosty enough to cleeve stones’) It’s freezing


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