Enthusiastic support for the passé simple.

DonC1Kwiziq community member

Enthusiastic support for the passé simple.

Unlike some comment leavers on this page, I *adore* the passé simple and I find it extremely useful.

That probably has a lot to do with the fact that I enjoy reading French history and literature. (For example, Les Trois mousquetaires is an amazing romp !  Much better in the original French than in any English translation that I've seen.)

I would be hopelessly confused in my reading without a solid understanding of the passé simple (to say nothing of the passé antérieur and *all* the tenses of the subjonctif) !

Different people learn French for different purposes. All the purposes are legitimate, in my view. It's a pretty big website, and I support the principle that the lessons should cover as much of la langue française as possible.

That said, I would be grateful to have more coverage of informal French. When I watch movies, I often find myself at a loss to understand what is being said by one character to another, even though I have a pretty good command of C1-level formal French. Maybe mine is a minority interest, but I just want to mention it.

In any case:

Great site! Many thanks!


Asked 1 year ago
CélineKwiziq team memberCorrect answer

Bonjour Don,

Thank you for your kind feedback and suggestion! I will share it with the rest of the team. ;-)

Improving one's listening skills takes a lof of time, even if on paper you have a good solid level. I still find myself watching movies with subtitles in English at times despite being bilingual - and I've been living in the UK for fifteen years now. Here's a link to resources you might find useful :

Listening Links

TV Listening practice

News - Documentaries - Game shows

I hope this is helpful.

Bonne journée !

JessicaC1Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

Bonjour Céline,

It might not even be your listening skills! Even though it's my native language, I've often had trouble with unclear dialogue in English language films, so I just turn subtitles on by default now!

I concur with Don. I've definitely had need of the passe simple trying to get things done in French. In practice, it occurs fairly regularly in more formal written works.

Listening is definitely a weakness right now, so I appreciate the links.

Film wise, I understand the Disney (and thus Pixar, Dreamworks etc.,) films are also good for listening practice: sufficiently simple language whilst still being enjoyable as an adults.

If we're able to make suggestions here, I'd like to see more coverage of dialects; Belgicisms, Québécois etc., and more quiz questions at the C1 level (I recognise a lot of question/answer pairs by now!)

Enthusiastic support for the passé simple.

Unlike some comment leavers on this page, I *adore* the passé simple and I find it extremely useful.

That probably has a lot to do with the fact that I enjoy reading French history and literature. (For example, Les Trois mousquetaires is an amazing romp !  Much better in the original French than in any English translation that I've seen.)

I would be hopelessly confused in my reading without a solid understanding of the passé simple (to say nothing of the passé antérieur and *all* the tenses of the subjonctif) !

Different people learn French for different purposes. All the purposes are legitimate, in my view. It's a pretty big website, and I support the principle that the lessons should cover as much of la langue française as possible.

That said, I would be grateful to have more coverage of informal French. When I watch movies, I often find myself at a loss to understand what is being said by one character to another, even though I have a pretty good command of C1-level formal French. Maybe mine is a minority interest, but I just want to mention it.

In any case:

Great site! Many thanks!


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