of, pertaining to, or characteristic of France, its inhabitants, or their language, culture, etc.: French cooking.
the people of France and their direct descendants.
a Romance language spoken in France, parts of Belgium and Switzerland, and in areas colonized after 1500 by France. Abbreviation: F
verb (used with object)
(often lowercase) to prepare (food) according to a French method.
(often lowercase) to cut (snap beans) into slivers or thin strips before cooking.
(often lowercase) to trim the meat from the end of (a rib chop).
(often lowercase) to prepare (meat) for cooking by slicing it into strips and pounding.
Slang. to short-sheet (a bed).
(often lowercase) Slang: Vulgar. to give oral stimulation of the penis or vulva.

before 1150; Middle English Frensh, French, Old English Frenc(i)sc. See Frank, -ish1

Frenchness, noun

The adjective French appears in the set phrase French pox in which it implies that sexual behavior in France produces a greater occurrence of sexually transmitted disease than is found elsewhere. Although insulting a particular person or nationality may be unintentional, use of this term is usually perceived as offensive to or by the French. However, the same hypersexuality stereotype in a more neutral term, like French kiss, or in the older slang term French letter, is not likely to offend. Unabridged


Alice ("Octave Thanet") 1850–1934, U.S. novelist and short-story writer.
Daniel Chester, 1850–1931, U.S. sculptor.
Sir John Denton Pinkstone [den-tn pingk-stohn, -stuhn] , 1st Earl of Ypres, 1852–1925, English field marshal in World War I.
Marilyn, born 1929, U.S. novelist and nonfiction writer. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To frenches
World English Dictionary
French1 (frɛntʃ)
1.  Old French See also Anglo-French the official language of France: also an official language of Switzerland, Belgium, Canada, and certain other countries. It is the native language of approximately 70 million people; also used for diplomacy. Historically, French is an Indo-European language belonging to the Romance group
2.  (functioning as plural) the French the natives, citizens, or inhabitants of France collectively
3.  See French vermouth
4.  relating to, denoting, or characteristic of France, the French, or their languageRelated: Franco-, Gallo-
5.  (in Canada) of or relating to French Canadians
Related: Franco-, Gallo-
[Old English Frencisc French, Frankish; see Frank]

French2 (frɛntʃ)
Sir John Denton Pinkstone, 1st Earl of Ypres. 1852--1925, British field marshal in World War I: commanded the British Expeditionary Force in France and Belgium (1914--15); Lord Lieutenant of Ireland (1918--21)

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
Cite This Source
Word Origin & History

O.E. frencisc "of the Franks" (see frank). Euphemistic meaning "bad language" (pardon my French) is from 1895. Used in many combination-words, often dealing with food or sex. French dressing first recorded 1900; French toast is from 1630s. French letter "condom" (c.1856),
French (v.) "perform oral sex on" (c.1917) and French kiss (1923) all probably stem from the Anglo-Saxon equation of Gallic culture and sexual sophistication, a sense first recorded 1749 in French novel. To take French leave, "depart without telling the host," is 1771, from a social custom then prevalent. However, in France this is said to be called filer à l'anglaise, lit. "to take English leave."
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Copyright © 2014, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature