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Posts Tagged ‘support’

You know those large boxes in the street where you can donate clothing? They’re called boîtes de dons, donation boxes.

There’s one in my area from an organisation called Le Support.

Support is an interesting word — it’s got several usages, two of which are particular to Québécois French.

Remember, support is pronounced as if it were written suppor.

1. The first Québécois usage is support in the sense of appui, soutien (aid, support).

offrir un support financier à quelqu’un
to offer someone financial support
(example taken from the Usito dictionary)

2. The second Québécois usage is support in the sense of clothes hanger.

In #965, we saw how a cashier in a clothing shop asked me if I wanted to keep the clothes hangers that went with the shirts I was buying:

Voulez-vous garder les supports?
Do you want to keep the clothes hangers?

Considering that Le Support offers support (definition 1) by selling donated clothing (clothes hangers; definition 2), their name is fitting.

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As I paid for a pair of shirts in a clothing shop, the cashier asked me if I’d like to keep the clothes hangers that each shirt was hanging on.

Can you guess how she asked the question “Do you want to keep the clothes hangers?” in French?

If you look at French-English dictionaries online, they give un cintre as the equivalent of “clothes hanger.” But cintre isn’t the word the cashier used — that’s because there’s another word for clothes hangers in use in Québec.

The word she used instead was the masculine support.

Here’s how the cashier asked me the question then:

Voulez-vous garder les supports?

In this context, then, support means the same thing as cintre — it’s a clothes hanger. The final t of support isn’t pronounced.

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