French Learn French: New Year Vocabulary

Improve your French skills by learning vocabulary related to New Year. Explore common phrases, traditions, and words used in context.


In French, 'anticipation' is used similarly to English, indicating the act of expecting or looking ahead to something future. This could relate to any kind of event or occurrence. It can be used in various grammatical contexts, including as the subject of a sentence, the object of a verb, or as a complement.

Example sentences with  anticipation

The French word for 'blessings' is 'bénédictions'. This term is used similarly in French as it is in English, to represent divine or spiritual favor, well wishes, or positive thoughts. However, like English, the term can also be used more generally to express gratitude or thankfulness in day-to-day conversation or during special occasions.

Example sentences with  bénédictions

The French word 'buts' is used in similar contexts as 'goals' in English. It can be used to discuss objectives in a game, a personal objective or a target. Note that 'buts' is plural, the singular is 'but'.

Example sentences with  buts

The word 'calendrier' is a masculine noun in French, used in the same contexts as the English word 'calendar'. For example, you can use it to refer to a system of timekeeping that defines the beginning, length, and divisions of a year.

Example sentences with  calendrier
capsule temporelle
time capsule

The French word 'capsule temporelle' is equivalent to the English term 'time capsule'. It is primarily used to refer to a container that stores a selection of objects or information, often intended as a method of communication with people of the future. In a sentence, one might say 'Nous avons enterré une capsule temporelle dans le jardin'.

Example sentences with  capsule temporelle

The French word 'célébration' is used similarly to how 'celebration' is used in English. One could use it with parties, festivities, or other events where there is a sense of happiness and commemoration. For example, 'La célébration de son anniversaire est la semaine prochaine' translates to 'Her birthday celebration is next week'.

Example sentences with  célébration

In both English and French, 'champagne' refers to the sparkling wine made from grapes grown in the Champagne region of France. It's commonly used in celebrations like New Year's Eve and weddings. The French usage of 'champagne' is identical to the English usage.

Example sentences with  champagne
compte à rebours

The French term 'compte à rebours' is used in the same way as the English term 'countdown'. It can be applied in various contexts such as events, launches or deadlines where a backward counting is used to indicate the time left. Note that French uses 'à rebours' instead of 'down' to denote 'counting backward'.

Example sentences with  compte à rebours

The word 'confettis' is used in the French language exactly like 'confetti' in English. It refers to small pieces or streamers of colored paper that are often thrown at celebrations, especially parades and weddings. Remember, even though it ends in 's', it doesn't make it plural. So, don't let it trip you up.

Example sentences with  confettis
des cierges magiques

In French, 'des cierges magiques' is the term for 'sparklers.' It is often used in festive ceremonies such as birthdays or national holidays, such as the 14th of July in France. It is a countable noun so remember to make it agreement with the number.

Example sentences with  des cierges magiques

The French word 'espères' translates to 'hopes' in English. It is used in contexts to express expectation or desire for a certain thing to happen, similar to its English counterpart. Just like in English, it can be used in various tenses, but remember to adjust the word accordingly.

Example sentences with  espères

The French word 'famille' is used in the same context as the English word 'family'. It refers to a group of individuals related by blood, marriage, or adopting, living together. It can also refer to all the descendants of a common ancestor. It is used in several expressions such as 'Une grande famille' meaning a large family or 'Toute ma famille' meaning all my family.

Example sentences with  famille

The French word 'festivités' directly translates to 'festivities' in English and is used in similar contexts. It can refer to any type of celebration or series of events for a special occasion. For example, one might say 'Les festivités de Noël sont toujours très gaies', which means 'The Christmas festivities are always very cheerful'.

Example sentences with  festivités

The French word 'fête' is used to describe a social gathering of invited guests, typically involving eating, drinking, and entertainment, similar to the English word 'party'. It can also refer to a festival or a celebration of a particular event or anniversary. 'Fête' is used in both formal and casual settings.

Example sentences with  fête
feux d'artifice

The French term 'feux d'artifice' is used to refer to fireworks, particularly those used during celebrations like New Year's Eve or Bastille Day in France. It is usually used in the plural form given the collective nature of fireworks. It's important to remember the phrase in its entirety, as 'feux' on its own refers to 'fires' and 'artifice' can mean 'trickery', but together they make up the term for fireworks.

Example sentences with  feux d'artifice

The French word 'horloge' translates to 'clock' in English. 'Horloge' is used to describe a device for measuring and indicating time, traditionally by means of pointers moving over a dial. It's used quite similarly in sentences as it would be in English.

Example sentences with  horloge

The French word 'janvier' is used exactly as the English word 'January'. It corresponds to the first month of the year in the Gregorian calendar. For example, '6 janvier 2022' means 'January 6, 2022'.

Example sentences with  janvier

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
lâcher de balle
ball drop

In French, 'lâcher de balle' is used to describe the act of dropping a ball. It can be used in various contexts such as sports or physics. However, it's not used to describe the event of 'New Year's Eve Ball Drop' as it has a different cultural significance in French.

Example sentences with  lâcher de balle

The French word for midnight is 'minuit'. It is used in much the same way as in English, to refer to the middle of the night, specifically 12:00 AM. Just like English, it can also be used metaphorically to refer to a critical or transition moment.

Example sentences with  minuit
nouveaux départs
new beginnings

The phrase 'nouveaux départs' is used in French to express the start of a new phase or period, just like 'new beginnings' in English. It can be used in various contexts such as starting a new job, moving to a new place or the start of a new year.

Example sentences with  nouveaux départs

The French word 'optimisme' is a masculine noun used in various contexts just like in English, to express hopefulness and confidence about the future or successful outcome of something. It can also be used to describe a person's character trait.

Example sentences with  optimisme
pain grillé

In French, 'pain grillé' is the phrase used to describe 'toast'. It is literally translated as 'grilled bread'. You might use it in phrases like 'Je mange du pain grillé pour le petit déjeuner', which means 'I eat toast for breakfast'.

Example sentences with  pain grillé

The French word 'rassemblement' is used to describe a group of people coming together, just like 'gathering' in English. It can be used in various contexts, such as a social gathering (rassemblement social), a political gathering (rassemblement politique), or a family gathering (rassemblement familial).

Example sentences with  rassemblement

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 'réjouissance' is used to talk about celebrations or festivities with great joy and merriment. It can be used in different contexts, such as parties, holidays, or any joyful gathering.

Example sentences with  réjouissance

The French word 'renouvellement' corresponds to the English word 'renewal'. It is used in the same way as in English and can refer to the action of extending an agreement, recurring or repeating an action, or refreshing something. For example, a 'renouvellement de bail' is a lease renewal.

Example sentences with  renouvellement

The French word 'résolutions' can be used in a similar context to the English word 'resolutions'. It refers to decisions or determinations; firm decisions to do or not to do something. It is commonly used when talking about New Year's resolutions, which are 'les résolutions du Nouvel An' in French.

Example sentences with  résolutions

In French, 'tradition' is used in the same way as in English. It refers to a custom or belief that has been passed down from one generation to another. It can be used in various contexts, such as family traditions, cultural traditions, and religious traditions.

Example sentences with  tradition
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