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The phrase, "I don't understand," is going to be very useful. Because most of the time, maybe even almost 100% of the time, you won't understand. While there are similarities between English and French, in the beginning, there will likely be an adjustment period during which your ears get used to French.
So, in French, "I don’t understand," is Je ne comprends pas. Je ne comprends pas.
Let's break it down by syllable: Je ne com-prends pas.
Now, let's hear it once again, Je ne comprends pas.
The first word, Je, means "I."
Let's break this word down and hear it one more time, Je, and je.
This is followed by Ne, which in French is put before a verb to make it negative, similar to "don't" in English. Ne. Ne, and ne.
So, to recap here, we have Je nu. Literally, this means "I don't."
Let's take a look at the next word, Comprends, which means understand.
Comprends, and comprends.
This is followed by Pas, which along with Ne, completes the negation of the verb.
Pas. Pas. Pas.
So, altogether, we have Je ne comprends pas. Literally, this means "I don't understand."
To be extra polite, excuse yourself before saying Je ne comprends pas.
To do this, say Excusez-moi, which we learned earlier.
This makes, Excusez-mois. Je ne comprends pas.
Apologizing for not speaking the language gives that extra consideration that the locals will appreciate.


Okay. To close out today's lesson, we'd like for you to practice what we've just learned. I'll provide you with the English equivalent of the phrase and you're responsible for saying it out loud in French. You'll have just a few seconds before I give you the answer. So, bonne chance. That means "good luck" in French. Okay. Here we go.
"I don't understand."
Je ne comprends pas.
Je ne comprends pas.
Je ne comprends pas.
This is the end of today's lesson. See you soon. À bientôt!

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