Wednesday, March 6, 2013

The languages of Cameroon

Parlez -Vous Francais?

Well, you might if you lived in Cameroon, French is one of two official languages (English is the other) but it is also only one of the 230 different languages spoken in Cameroon.  Much of the French spoken by the Cameroonians would probably be very different from that on the streets of Paris, but I couldn't find any websites with the breakdown so we are going to learn French French not Cameroonian French :) The pronunciations are in parentheses. 

Hello- Bon jour (bone zhour)   Good bye - Au revoir (oh rer-vwahr)Yes - Oui (wee)   No - Non    Please - S'il vous plait (seel voo play)
Thank you- Merci (mare-see)  I Love You- Je T'aime (zhuh- tem)

red- rouge (roozh)  yellow- jaune (zhawn)   green- vert (vair)
blue- bleu (bloo)   purple - violet (vee-o-lay)  white- blanc (blan)
black - noir (noo-ar)

1- un     2- deux (do)    3- trois (twa)   4- quarte (ka-tre)
5- cinq (say-n-kay)  6- six (sees)   7- sept (set)   8- huit (weet)
9- neuf (noof)   10- dix (deese)

I was surprised how much French I actually knew once I started looking at the words, and also a little ashamed of myself that I had a Great- Grandmother and Grandmother who spoke fluent French and I didn't know more.  Of course, they lived in Wisconsin and I lived in California but I still should have learned it as a tribute to them!! Well, la pour vous Grandmeres!!  (Here's to you Grandmothers!)


  1. I didn't know grandma and great-grandma knew french!

  2. Really? I guess Great- Grandma died when you were very young (or not born) and I think they were the only two in the family but I remember them talking to each other sometimes in French. Maybe they were talking about ME?!?