to speak + language

JohnnyC1Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

to speak + language

You didn't explain why we can use both forms with "to speak + language." Is it because a language is both a noun and an adjective?
Asked 7 years ago
AurélieKwiziq team memberCorrect answer
Bonjour Johnny !

I don't think that's the reason, as in both cases, you use the non-capitalised adjective form of the language:
"Je parle français."
"Je parle le français."

I would say that the original way would be "Je parle le (langage) français", which would respect French structures, and then usage would have made "Je parle français" acceptable as well. But that's my humble theory, as it's one of those "that's just the way it is" rules!

À bientôt !
TomB2Kwiziq community member

But be careful: if one says "I speak the French language," it would be "Je parle la langue française" because the word "langue" is feminine, so it takes a feminine adjective, "française." The confusion here is that in "Je parle français," the word "français" is a masculine noun, because the name of the language is a masculine noun.

to speak + language

You didn't explain why we can use both forms with "to speak + language." Is it because a language is both a noun and an adjective?

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