Saturday, 18 June 2016

False friends

English has borrowed many words from French, and their meanings have often been subtly changed.  This gives rise to linguistic "faux amis", or false friends; words that have similar pronunciations but different meanings.

The french word librairie in modern french means "bookshop" (although in ancient french it meant library) and nowadays a library is a bibliothèqe (f).  Modern libraries often lend out more than just books; they lend CDs, DVDs and so on, and so the library in Evron is known as the médiathèque.

They hold breakfast meetings there once a month, (with free coffee and pastries), when they give a themed presentation on their new acquisitions.  Our flute quartet was invited to come and play some american music as part of a presentation of new material of american origin.  The audience numbered about 30, and covered all ages.

I'm embarrassed to say that I hadn't been in the médiathèque before, and it's really rather good.  They have a broad selection of books, CDs and DVDs, and I noticed a few that I would be very interested to read or play.   The discovery of the day was the jazz flutist Elena Pinderhughes who appears on a CD called Stretch Music, with trumpetist Christian Scott and others.  I also learned that there is new (to me) CD of that peerless singer Eva Cassidy, called Night Bird, to which I shall certainly devote an intense listening, as soon as I can.

I joined the library, it cost 12 euros and I  can borrow up to 12 items from each of four different libraries in the area.  As can Anita too.  Plenty.


Helen Devries said...

Whewn I first moved to France the local town had a bibliotheque which over the years converted itself to a mediatheque: it was well used, ran events - and was cheap to join! Gradually the villages acquired their own lending libraries to supplement the bibliobus which did monthly visits.
Great fears for funding given the amalgamation into a new region - and given the gaping hole in the finances of the old Poitou Charente...

CherryPie said...

It sounds like you have found a rich source of music to explore :-)

Eva Cassidy was an Angel that fell too soon, her music speaks to the soul. I will look out for the CD that you mention.

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