French Learn French: Christmas Vocabulary

A collection of French vocabulary related to Christmas, including translations, pronunciation guides, and contextual examples.


In French, 'gratitude' is used in the same context as in English, to express the quality of being thankful. It can be used both formally and informally. For example, 'J'exprime ma gratitude envers toi' means 'I express my gratitude towards you'.

Example sentences with  gratitude

In French, the word for 'mistletoe' is 'gui'. It is used in the same contexts as in English, generally referring to the plant used traditionally in holiday decorations. Just like in English, 'gui' can be used in different contexts, from botanical to symbolic or tradition-related discussions.

Example sentences with  gui

The word 'houx' in French translates to 'holly' in English. It is primarily used to refer to an evergreen plant with red berries, traditionally used for Christmas decorations in many cultures. Just like in English, 'houx' can be used in various contexts where the holly plant or symbol is being referred to.

Example sentences with  houx

The French word for hymns is 'hymnes'. It is used in the same context as in English, to refer to a religious song or poem of praise to God or a god. 'Hymnes' can be seen in religious contexts such as church services, and it can also refer to national anthems.

Example sentences with  hymnes

The French word 'joie' translates to 'joy' in English. It is typically used in the same contexts as the English word, to express a feeling of great pleasure and happiness. It can be used in many contexts - for example, 'Je ressens une grande joie' means 'I feel great joy'.

Example sentences with  joie

The French word 'joyeux' is used in a similar way as 'merry' in English, often in reference to an emotion of happiness or celebration. It's commonly used in greeting messages and wishes, especially during Christmas period; 'Joyeux Noël' (Merry Christmas).

Example sentences with  joyeux
la nativité

The word 'la nativité' in French is primarily used to refer to the birth of Jesus Christ in Christian tradition, similarly to how 'nativity' is used in English. However, it can also be used more generally to refer to the act or place of birth. It is commonly used around the Christmas period in reference to 'nativity plays' and 'nativity scenes'.

Example sentences with  la nativité
lumière de bougie

The French phrase for 'candlelight' is 'lumière de bougie'. It directly translates to 'light of candle'. It can be used in a similar context as in English, refering to the light produced by a candle. For example, 'un dîner à la lumière de bougie' means 'a candlelit dinner'.

Example sentences with  lumière de bougie

The French word 'lumières' is used in the same context as the English word 'lights'. However, in French, the word 'lumières' is most often used in the plural form. It is used to talk about multiple sources of light or the concept of lighting in general.

Example sentences with  lumières

The word 'manger' is an infinitive verb in French that translates to 'eat' in English. It can be used in different tenses to show the action of eating, similarly to how 'eat' is used in English sentences. For example, 'Je mange' means 'I eat'.

Example sentences with  manger
merveille d'hiver
winter wonderland

The French phrase 'merveille d'hiver' translates to 'winter wonderland' in English. It is used to describe an idealized place or scene of beauty or charm in winter. This could be a snow-covered landscape or a place beautifully decorated for the holiday season. In context, you might say 'C'est une merveille d'hiver dehors' translating to 'It's a winter wonderland outside'.

Example sentences with  merveille d'hiver

In French, the word for 'miracle' is 'miracle', pronounced meer-a-cl. It's used similarly as in English, referring to an exceptional, surprising, or unforeseen event that is considered unexplainable by natural or scientific laws.

Example sentences with  miracle

The French word for Christmas is 'Noël'. Similar to English, it is used to refer to the annual Christian festival celebrating Christ's birth, held on December 25. Also, it could be used to refer to the season of celebration surrounding this festival.

Example sentences with  Noël
pain d'épices

The French word 'pain d'épices' directly translates into 'spice bread', but it's used to indicate 'gingerbread' in English. This term is often used to describe a variety of baked goods that are flavored with ginger and a variety of other spices. It's associated with the holiday season in both cultures.

Example sentences with  pain d'épices
Père Noël
santa claus

In France, 'Père Noël', equivalent to Santa Claus, is a common figure of Christmas tradition. He brings gifts to children much like Santa Claus does in English-speaking cultures. He is also recognized and celebrated throughout the French-speaking world.

Example sentences with  Père Noël

The word 'prière' in French is used for the English term 'prayer'. It refers to a solemn request for help or expression of thanks addressed to God or another deity. This could be used in a religious context in similar ways to its English counterpart, both in written and spoken French.

Example sentences with  prière

The word 'reconnaissance' refers to the feeling of being thankful or appreciative in French. It is often used to express gratitude for a kindness or benefit one has received, similar to how gratefulness is used in English.

Example sentences with  reconnaissance

The French word 'rédemption' is used in the same contexts as in English. It may refer to the action of saving or being saved from sin, error, or evil. Also, it can mean the action of regaining or gaining possession of something in exchange for payment, or clearing a debt.

Example sentences with  rédemption

In French, 'réflexion' has similar usages to English. It can mean a reflective surface bouncing back light or imagery, a thoughtful process, or a contemplative state. It can be used both in a literal and figurative sense.

Example sentences with  réflexion

The French word for 'reindeer' is 'renne'. It is used to refer to the large type of deer, which is native to cold, northerly climates such as in the Arctic regions. For example, 'J'aime le renne' means 'I like the reindeer'.

Example sentences with  renne

The French word 'salutations' is used in formal situations or in written communication. It is not very commonly used in casual conversation. Instead, to say 'hello' in French, you would typically say 'bonjour' or 'salut'.

Example sentences with  salutations

The French word 'sauveur' is used similarly to the English word 'savior'. It can refer to a person who saves someone else from harm or difficulty. In religious context, it is often used to refer to Jesus Christ. It can also be used metaphorically in a variety of situations. Just like in English, it's a pretty strong word to use and usually indicates a high degree of gratitude or relief.

Example sentences with  sauveur
Toujours vert

The term 'Toujours vert' is used in French to denote plants that retain green leaves throughout the year, similar to 'evergreen' in English. It can also metaphorically refer to concepts, ideas or skills that are perpetually relevant or enduring.

Example sentences with  Toujours vert

The French word 'traditions' is used in the same way as in English. It refers to the customs or beliefs that are passed down from generation to generation. An example of how to use it in a sentence would be: 'Les traditions françaises sont diverses et colorées', which translates to 'French traditions are diverse and colorful'.

Example sentences with  traditions

The French word 'traîneau' refers to a type of vehicle, typically on runners, for conveying goods or passengers over snow or ice. It is used exactly the same way in French as 'sleigh' is in English, such as in conversations referring to winter activities or Christmas stories.

Example sentences with  traîneau

The French word 'unité' is most commonly used exactly like the English word 'unity'. It can refer to the state of being one or joined as a whole. For example 'L'unité de la famille' would translate to 'The unity of the family'. This word is commonly used in both physics and mathematics as well.

Example sentences with  unité
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