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French grammar - The Subject Pronoun on

The Subject Pronoun on

The pronoun on is widely used in colloquial French.

Nowadays on is very often used instead of nous. Indeed to some extent it has replaced nous in colloquial spoken French.

But it also retains the somewhat broader meaning of the collective 'one', 'you', 'people' or 'someone' or even 'they'.

-- On behaves like il & elle when conjugating verbs.

On parle en français à l'école.
We (everyone) speak French at school.
Olivier et moi, on est mariés.
Olivier and I, we are married.

marié (m) means 'married'

On est à côté de la mer, c'est chouette !
We are by to the sea, it's great!

à côté de means 'next to' or 'by'

chouette (m) means 'cool'

On voit souvent notre famille.
We often see our family.

chouette (adj) means 'great' or 'cool' or 'brilliant'

On voyage souvent : on a de la chance !
We travel often: we are lucky!
On a une vie simple et on est heureux.
We have a simple life and we are happy.
En France, on mange son hamburger avec une fourchette et un couteau.
In general in France, one (people) eats his∆her hamburger with a fork and a knife.

en France means 'in France'

Ici, on parle anglais.
We (people) speak English here.
On est fous !
People are crazy!
Qu'est-ce qu'on fait ?
What are we doing?
Va-t-on à la plage ?
Are we going to the beach?
On ne peut pas tout savoir.
One (people) cannot know everything.

tout (pronoun) means 'everything'

savoir (verb) means 'to know'

Que fait-on ici après le travail ?
What does one (people) do here after work?

après means 'after'

On peut regarder le lever du soleil sur la plage.
You (one) can watch the sunrise on the beach.

lever du soleil (m) means 'sunrise'

On ne peut pas manger dans le métro.
You (one) cannoteat on the subway.

métro (m) means 'subway' or 'metro'