Fait Accompli - Used in English and French - B


a long, narrow loaf of bread with a crisp crust, often called 'French bread' in the United Kingdom and United States. In French, a "baguette" is any long and narrow, stick-like object.
a long upholstered bench or a sofa
beau geste
lit. "beautiful gesture", a gracious gesture, noble in form but often futile or meaningless in substance. This French expression has been pressing at the door of standard English with only partial success, since the appearance of P.C. Wren's Beau Geste (1924), the first of his Foreign Legion novels.
monumental architectural style of the early 20th century made famous by the Académie des Beaux-Arts
bel esprit (pl. beaux esprits)
lit. "fine mind"; a cultivated, highly intelligent person
a beautiful woman or girl. Common uses of this word are in the phrases the belle of the ball (the most beautiful woman or girl present at a function) and southern belle (a beautiful woman from the southern states of the US)
Belle Époque
a period in European social history that began during the late 19th century and lasted until World War I.
lit. "fine letters"; literature regarded for its aesthetic value rather than its didactic or informative content; also, light, stylish writings, usually on literary or intellectual subjects
bien pensant
lit. "well thinking"; right thinking, orthodox. Commonly implies willful blindness to dangers or suffering faced by others. The noun form bien-pensance is rarely seen in English.
lit. "sweet note", love letter
unimpressed with something because of overfamiliarity, jaded.
bon appétit
lit. "good appetite"; enjoy your meal
bon mot (pl. bons mots)
well-chosen word(s), particularly a witty remark ("each bon mot which falls from his lips is analysed and filed away for posterity", The European Magazine, 29 August – 4 September 1996)
bon vivant
one who enjoys the good life, an epicurean
bon voyage
lit. "good journey"; have a good trip!
member of the bourgeoisie, originally shopkeepers living in towns in the Middle Ages. Now the term is derogatory, and it applies to a person whose beliefs, attitudes, and practices are conventionally middle-class.
a bunch of flowers.
small ornamental objects, less valuable than antiques; a collection of old furniture, china, plates and curiosities. Cf. de bric et de broc, corresponding to our "by hook or by crook," and brack, refuse.
a sweet yeast bun, kind of a crossover between a popover and a light muffin; French also use the term as slang for 'potbelly', because of the overhang effect.
a brown-haired girl. For brown-haired man, French uses brun and for a woman brune. Brunette is rarely used in French, unless in old literature, and its masculine form brunet (for a boy) is almost unheard of. Nowadays it's use to qualify a pretty brown-haired girl. For example: "Hé t'as vue la petite brunette", "hey did you see the pretty brown-haired girl"
bureau (pl. bureaux)
office; originally meant "desk" in French.

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