Merci de / pour = Thank you for

In French, to express thank you for, you will use merci followed by either de or pour.
Here are the different cases:

Merci de/pour [quelque chose] = Thank you for [something]

Merci pour votre compréhension.
Thank you for your understanding.

Merci de votre compréhension.
Thank you for your understanding.

Merci pour le cadeau.
Thank you for the gift.

Merci pour le repas.
Thank you for the meal.

To express thank you for + [noun], you can use either merci de or merci pour + [nom], although:

- either de or pour is colloquial with abstract nouns (votre compréhension, patience, gentillesse...), with merci de being a bit more elegant.

- merci pour is the one you use with actual things (le cadeau, la carte...)

By the way, the expression Merci du cadeau ! is sarcastic in French = What a gift! / Talk about a gift!


Merci de [faire quelque chose]
 = Please [do something] / Thank you for [doing something]

In French, you can use merci de + [infinitif] to express Please + [do something] in a formal/professional context.

Merci de patienter.
Please wait.

Merci d'écouter ce qui suit.
Please listen to what follows.

J'ai vraiment du mal, merci de m'aider.
I'm really struggling, please help me.

Merci de ne pas parler pendant la présentation.
Please do not speak during the presentation.

After a preposition (here de), ne pas both come before the infinitive.

 

ATTENTION :

To express Thank you for + [do-ing] - when you're thanking the person for an action already done - you will use Merci de + [Infinitif Passé] : 

C'était très difficile, merci de m'avoir aidée.
It was very hard, thanks for helping me.

Mes amis, merci à tous d'être venus.
My friends, thank you all for coming.

Sarah, merci d'être venue.
Sarah, thanks for coming.

Paul, merci d'être venu.
Paul, thanks for coming.

Merci d'avoir fait ce gâteau, il était délicieux.
Thanks for making this cake, it was delicious.

 

Learn more about these related French grammar topics

Préposition

Slang/Expression/Highly Idiomatic

Infinitif passé

Examples and resources

Merci pour le cadeau.
Thank you for the gift.


J'ai vraiment du mal, merci de m'aider.
I'm really struggling, please help me.


Sarah, merci d'être venue.
Sarah, thanks for coming.


Merci de votre compréhension.
Thank you for your understanding.


Merci de patienter.
Please wait.


Mes amis, merci à tous d'être venus.
My friends, thank you all for coming.


Merci pour votre compréhension.
Thank you for your understanding.


Merci d'écouter ce qui suit.
Please listen to what follows.


Paul, merci d'être venu.
Paul, thanks for coming.


Merci d'avoir fait ce gâteau, il était délicieux.
Thanks for making this cake, it was delicious.


Merci pour le repas.
Thank you for the meal.


Merci de ne pas parler pendant la présentation.
Please do not speak during the presentation.


C'était très difficile, merci de m'avoir aidée.
It was very hard, thanks for helping me.


Q&A

Tom

Kwiziq community member

13 August 2018

4 replies

Colloquial vs formal

The lesson states " either de or pour is colloquial with abstract nouns (votre compréhension, patience, gentillesse...), with merci de being a bit more elegant.

I don't get the sense of this statement.

If both are colloquial then what is the formal way of expressing " Thank you for your understanding".

Chris

Kwiziq community member

14 August 2018

14/08/18

Hi Tom, I guess what that means is that either de or pour are used in spoken French with abstract nouns. The use of pour being more colloquial and de being more elegant/formal.


-- Chris (not a native speaker).

Tom

Kwiziq community member

14 August 2018

14/08/18

Of course I get that.


I'm just pointing out the imprecision of the statement. Colloquial use does not equate with the spoken language but is rather a Register within the spoken language.


As far as I am aware a word or phrase cannot possess the duality of being both colloquial and formal.French speech with pour being colloquial and de being formal.


Perhaps I'm just being obtuse, but  as aspiring linguists we should strive for precision in language.



Alan

Kwiziq community member

14 August 2018

14/08/18

It's hard to believe either of these are "colloquial". I wonder if it should be "idiomatic"?

Chris

Kwiziq community member

14 August 2018

14/08/18

The English is a bit imprecise. I interpreted as "colloquial" meaning "used in spoken French", irrespective of register.


-- Chris.

David

Kwiziq community member

25 July 2018

2 replies

Thanks for coming

The quiz says: ____ les gars! Thanks for coming guys!

The answer is Merci d'etre venus

This is clearly correct in the usual situation where the guys have come and are being thanked for it.

But suppose that the guys had promised to come and were being thanked in advance for it? The same English sentence would work for that situation, even if it would be more explicit if we said "Thanks for agreeing to come, guys". How would the French look in that case?

Cécile

Kwiziq language super star

25 July 2018

25/07/18

Hi David,


You could say:


"Merci de venir à l'heure les gars! = "Please come on time guys!"

David

Kwiziq community member

25 July 2018

25/07/18

That is not quite the same meaning. It has turned a thankyou into a please that even implies doubt as to whether the guys will be on time without a reminder.


I suppose that this would be nearest to the meaning I wanted: "Merci d'avoir accepté de venir, les gars" but all of this assumes that the straightfoward "Merci de venir les gars" is not correct usage. Is that so?

Brittany

Kwiziq community member

16 November 2017

2 replies

Marche-t-il pour le négatif? Par exemple: "Merci de ne parler pas pendant la présentation."

Aurélie

Kwiziq language super star

16 November 2017

16/11/17

Bonjour Brittany !

Yes indeed, however note that negation after a preposition will come as follows:

Merci de ne pas parler pendant la présentation.


Thanks to you, I've now added this case to the lesson :)

À bientôt !

Brittany

Kwiziq community member

5 December 2017

5/12/17

Très bien. Merci!
How has your day been?