Monday, March 27, 2006

Malgré

So I studied French all my life, and starting from a very young age I was introduced to the word Malgré meaning despite (Malgré son charme la vie est nulle: Despite its magic life’s meaningless).

All these years I used this word with great ease, it’s simple and it’s essential. One thing always intrigued me:
Why do we use the é and not the è? For me the natural tendency was always to use the è I don’t know it always seemed closer to the actual pronunciation.

How ever one question never crossed my mind :

Um……..What does this word derive from?


And today I learned merely by mistake the actual meaning of this pretty word.

In fact this word is composed of two words:

Mal: bad

And

Gré: Taste, like taste in fashion.

Which explains the meaning of the whole word:

Against ones taste, or against ones liking, or despite ones liking. HiHi just two words that were stitched together (the German style).

And in fact there is another expression which renders the transition from mal gré to malgré even more evident:

bon gré mal gré. When we remember that bon means good, it’s easy to conclude that the expression means: Whether I/you/he/she/it/we like(s) it or not.

AWESOME

Wait a minute! I am probably the only human being that thinks this is a discovery.




Update





This is what nomad Had to say about this, and since he knows about this better than I ever will I recommand that you listen to read it:

"Gré: Taste, like taste in fashion."

I would have put a meaning of vonlonté

we say bon gré : bonne volonté

mauvais gré : mauvaise volonté

malgré comes for : bien que...

malgré, I think is used for the nicest sonorité !

thus, it is horrible to hear or write malgré que ...

2 comments:

Nomad said...

"Gré: Taste, like taste in fashion."

I would have put a meaning of vonlonté

we say bon gré : bonne volonté

mauvais gré : mauvaise volonté

malgré comes for : bien que...

malgré, I think is used for the nicest sonorité !

thus, it is horrible to hear or write malgré que ...

Pazuzu said...

Thanks, well according to the Dictionnary that I have Gré would have 3 meanings I tried to find the one that was the most indepedant of the "malgré" meaning, I'll add your comment to the blog as the opinion of someone who knows french better than I do.