Apposition – apposition

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Let's Define It!

What's an *apposition*?

An apposition - this word may sound a little too technical at first sight if you encounter it inside a French grammar book, but do not let it stop you.

It is actually simple to understand: it refers to a noun or a phrase that is inserted as explanation of another noun or phrase just used. Hmm, still doesn't make sense to you eh?

Ok, check this out:

"Mme. Martine, nouvelle voisine de trente-cinq ans arrivée de la capitale, gardait trois chiens dans son arrière-cour/ [Ms. Martine, new 35 year-old neighbor who came from the capital city, kept three dogs in her backyard.]

So in this sentence, the underlined portion is an apposition, that is, it is a phrase that explains who Mrs. Martine is: a new neigbor, 35 years of age, who arrived from the capital.

Please note that by convention, articles are often omitted before a noun used in apposition.

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Let's Pronounce It!

What does it sound like in French?

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Let's Have an Example or Two!

Can a little reinforcement do the trick?

Find below a few sentences including a noun or phrase placed in apposition.

  • La maison, architecture moderne en contraste avec les maisons alentours, se dresse majestueusement sur la colline. / The house, mordern architecture contrasting with the surrounding houses, stands proudly on top of the hill.
  • Lucie, capitaine de l'équipe, tenait maintenant le rôle le plus important. / Lucie, team captain, now held the most important role. 

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