French Love Verbs

Valorie Delp
Hear of roses.

Unlike English, French love verbs are many and varied. In English, you use the same verb to express your devotion to your favorite food as you do to express your devotion to your spouse. However, the French language is much more expressive and varied and each French love verb has a different connotation.

How Do I Love Thee? Let Me Count the Ways

There are numerous verbs that get the message of love across to your intended object of affection--be it your favorite dessert, boyfriend or spouse, or child. A list of French love verbs reveals just how intricate the French language is.

Aimer

Aimer is by far the most common verb used to express what you love or like. You can use Je t'aime (pronounced: jeh tem), to tell your child that you love him and you'd also use the same expression to tell your boyfriend or spouse that you love him or her as well.

In addition, you can use it to express your likes and dislikes. For example: J'aime beaucoup le gâteau, (pronounced: zhehm boe coo luh gah toe), means "I really like cake!" Or you could say, J'aime nager, (pronounced: zhehm nah zhay) which means I like to swim.

It's important to note that the verb aimer can imply that you either love or like someone or something depending on the context in which it's used.

Tomber amoureux (-euse)

If you are falling in love with someone, you can use tomber amoureux. This expression is exclusively used in a situation between lovers--just as it would be in English. Similarly, you can also exclaim: Je suis amoureux de toi. This of course means that you are in love.

Adorer

Of course if you adore something adorer is the word to use. You can use it to refer to someone or something. For example:

J'adore votre maison!
Pronounced: zhah door vo truh mah sohn
Means: I adore your house!

Je t'adore
Pronounced: zhuh tah door Means: I adore you. (Generally used with amorous connotations.)

Other French Love Verbs

If you want to add a little flair to your expression and language, these verbs are not as commonly used in spoken language however, they can all be used to declare your undying love.

French Verbs for Expressing Love
French Pronunciation Translation
admirer ahd mee ray to admire
estimer eh stee may to esteem or hold something in high regard
repecter rhuh spec tay to respect
être fou (-lle) de eh truh foo duh to be crazy about
trouver irrésistible troo vay ee rhay sees teebleh to be irresistible

A Quick Note on the Object of Your Affection

Since you always "love something or someone" your sentences will always have an object in them. In this context, the easiest way to think of the object of your sentence is to think about the thing or person you love. That thing or person is the object. In French grammar, object placement is quite different than it is in English. There are a few rules to help you keep everything straight.

In general, French sentences are constructed the following way:

Subject + Object + Verb

So when you're writing or speaking, you will always construct the sentence by giving the subject (which will generally be "je"), then the object, then the verb. For example,

Je t'adore.

Seems easy enough right? However, some verbs require that you place your object after the verb. How do you know which is which? In general, you memorize which verbs take a preposition after them such as à or de. Some examples are:

Je suis amoureux de toi.
Je suis fou de toi.
Je suis tombé amoureux de toi.

More On Love

If you're still struggling to find just the right words to express yourself, see if you can't find some phrases expressing love in French, or even some famous quotes about love. The French are not lacking in creativity to express their love and for the truly die hard romantic, there is a plethora to choose from.

French Love Verbs