French Cultural Notes

By Adelaide Corliss

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Manners

It is polite to bring flowers or candy when invited to a meal. Don't bring chrysanthemums because they symbolize death. You should not talk about age, jobs, money, or politics.
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The House

Often all clothes are hung in an armoire because closets are not in the bedrooms. Electronics are expensive so there is a TV set that the family shares and students don't have phones in their rooms. The bathroom has a sink and shower and toilets are in a small, separate room.
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Compliments

Tu trouves? C'est vrai? Vraiment? or C'est gentil! are common responses to compliments on clothes, appearance, home, and possessions.
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Gothic Construction

Notre-Dame de Chartres is a famous Gothic cathedral built in the 13th century. It was spared in all wars and still holds most of its original construction. It has beautiful flying buttresses and stained glass windows. It is very large and filled with light inside.