Top 10 abbreviations you get wrong all the time

The French language, this thing so pretty and so bastard at the same time! In addition to words that are not pronounced the same everywhere, inconsistencies or incomprehensible grammar rules, there are also lots of abbreviations. So, yes, they can save us precious time, but… Badly used, they can also ruin an email, an article or any writing. Come on, come on, let’s fix some together!

1. “Et…”

OULALALALA MY CHEWIE, IT’S NOT GOING AT ALL. Where to start ? First: we write “etc” and not “ect” since it is the abbreviation of “et cetera”. To never make the mistake again: remember the phrase “Your ass”. The “T” is before the “C”. Well, it’s the same. Then, why put “…”? Either we end a list with ellipses, to indicate that we are only quoting part of it (Elise, Jeanne, Tim…), or we replace them with the abbreviation (Elise, Jeanne, Tim, etc.) .). BUT NOT BOTH. After “etc” put a period. And that’s all.

2. “Mr.” for Mr

“Mr” exists… But in English! If you want to say “Mister”, you use the correct abbreviation, otherwise you will have to settle for “Mr”. In the plural, we abbreviate “gentlemen” by “MM. » and not by « Mrs » which means … « Mistress » (translate « mistress »). It does change the meaning of your sentence quite a bit!

3. “2nd”

Eh yes ! If we want to contract “second” (or third, fourth, fifth, ETC.) we must write “2nd” and not “2nd”! Similarly, we write “1re” and not “1ere” or “2d(e)” and not “2nd(e)”. In the plural, numeral adjectives take an “S”: “The 2nd Candidates”, “The 2nd Trials”.

4. “H” or “:” for “hour”

The abbreviation “hour” is invariable! Regardless of the case, we write a lowercase “h”, preceded and followed by a space. “The meeting is at 9:45 a.m.”, never at “9:45 a.m.”, “9:45 a.m.” or “9:45 a.m.”.

5. “3 sec” for “3 seconds”

The second is the unit of time of the international system. Its symbol is a single lowercase “s”, not “sec”. Also note that all symbols for weight (kg, g, mg,…), measurements (km, cm, mm,…) and time (h, min, s,…) are invariable! In the plural, they never take “s”. We will therefore write “10 minutes and 6 seconds” but “10 min and 6 sec”.

6. “Jul 14”, “Jul 14” or “14 Jul.” for “July 14”

The only abbreviation for “July” is “July.” “. That’s all. For the other months: January=Jan, February=Feb, April=Apr, September=Sept, October=Oct, November=Nov and December=Dec. March, May, June and August do not have small diminutives… Must say that basic, they are not the longest to write, huh! (Source.)

Top 10 abbreviations you get wrong all the time

7. “Ajd” or “aujd” for “today”

According to the dictionary of the French Academy, “today” is abbreviated “auj. “. It goes without saying that “ojd” is a language that should be confined to text messages between dads!

8. The “n°” or “num”

In the singular, we always abbreviate “number” by “n°”. In the plural, simply add an “s” after the “°”. In no case should you write “num” or “nums”. Besides being ugly, it’s incorrect. (Source.)

9. “i.e.”, “c to d” or “i.e.” for “i.e.”

No one spells it correctly, I believe… The correct abbreviation is “ie. “. It’s not very pretty, but it’s super logical, finally! To know if your abbreviation must end with a period or not, there is a rule to know (except for the units of measure, time and weight): if the abbreviation ends with the last letter of the word (like “bd” for “boulevard”), there is no period. In other cases, put a period (etc., supl., July, …)! CQFD.

10. “Co” for company

“Machin, thing, contraption and Co”: NO. In French, we decrease “company” by “Cie”. “Co”, once again, is the English version… If you are franglish or a young startupper, you can therefore write “and Co”. On the other hand, not sure that you make a lot of friends!

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