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Learn All Ways to Express Cause and Consequence in French

french cause and consequence sentence parce que puisque alors donc en raison de

Humans think in terms of cause and consequences all the time.

Events happen linearly and there’s always a reason behind everything. That is why expressing cause and consequences is so crucial when learning French.

Today, you learn how to express cause and consequences in French.

Difference Between Cause and Consequence

It is sometimes difficult to distinguish the cause from the consequence. So here is a little reminder.

The cause is always leading to another fact, as an underlying cause of an event is another event.

Je m’arrête, car je suis fatiguée. Je m’arrête : pourquoi ? Parce que je suis fatiguée.

I stop because I am tired. I stop: why? Because I am tired.

The consequence is a fact that results from another fact.

Les outils sont rouillés et doivent donc être changés.

The tools are rusted and must therefore be changed.

Normally, there are different conjunctions to express cause and consequence. Stay tuned to see the ultimate list of French conjunctions.

Conjunctions to Express Cause

Expressing the cause means giving the reason for an event or behavior but also justifying one’s actions. These are the conjunctions and phrases that express the cause.

  • Parce que

– Pourquoi il n’est pas venu ? –  Parce qu’il était occupé. 

– Why didn’t he come? – Because he was busy.

Learn more about How to say Because in French ? : Pourquoi and Parce que.

  • Comme (placed at the beggining)

Comme elle était occupé, elle n’est pas venue.

Since she was busy, she didn’t come.

  • Puisque ( for a cause that is obvious or already known)

Il ne peut pas jouer au tennis, puisqu’il a le bras cassé!

He can’t play tennis because his arm is broken!

  • Étant donné (que)/ vu (que) / du fait de / en raison de (for a cause that cannot be doubted)

Étant donné que l’Europe est une région très developpé, tout le monde veut y visiter. 

Since Europe is a very developed region, everyone wants to visit there.

  • Sous prétexte que (for a disputed cause)

Ils ne sont pas venus à la fête sous prétexte qu’ils étaient fatigués.

They didn’t come to the party just because they were tired.

  • À cause de (for a negative cause, followed by a name)

À cause du verglas, il y avait des embouteillages.

Because of the ice, there were traffic jams.

  • Grâce à (for a positive cause, followed by a name)

Le président a accordé la grâce au prisonnier.

The president granted the prisoner a pardon.

  • Par / Pour / De (followed by a noun)

Il mange par gourmandise. J’ai acheté un cadeau pour ma mère. Les animaux meurt de fatigue. 

He eats out of greed. I bought a present for my mother. Animals die of fatigue.

  • Pour (followed by infinitif passé)

Il faut une heure pour faire cuire le gâteau.

It takes an hour to bake the cake.

  • Car (which expresses the justification of what has just been stated)

Je me sens bien car j’ai bien dormi. 

I feel good because I slept well.

Learn more about French conjunctions : Guide to Conjunctions in French: et, ou, ni, mais, or, car, donc

  • En effet (placed at the beginning, in progress, or at the end of the sentence introducing an explanation)

Il n’est pas fils unique ; en effet, il a trois sœurs.

He is not an only child; as a matter of fact, he has three sisters.

Conjunctions to express Consequence

To express consequence means to show the outcome, consequences, or effects of an action or event. These are the conjunctions and phrases which express the consequence.

  • Donc , Alors (in oral speech)

Tu as beaucoup etudié, alors tu vas passer l’examen.

You’ve studied a lot, so you’re going to take the exam.

  • Par conséquent , C’est pourquoi

Elle n’est pas allé aux vacances. Par conséquent, elle est crevé.

She didn’t go on vacation. Therefore, she is exhausted.

  • Du coup (family conversations)

J’ai pas fait les courses. Du coup, j’étais en retard.

I haven’t done the shopping. So I was late.

  • Si / tellement  + adjectif / adverbe … que 

Elle est si/tellement motivé qu’elle etudie chaque jour.

She is so/so motivated that she studies every day.

  • Un tel, une telle, de tels, de telles … + nom que …

Il y avait une telle pluie que je ne pouvais pas venir à l’école.

It was so raining that I couldn’t come to school.

  • Il suffit de … pour que + subjonctif

Il suffit de prononcer son nom pour qu‘il s’énerve.

All you have to do is say his name and he gets angry.

  • Trop (de), trop peu (de), assez… pour + infinitif / pour que + subjonctif

Elle est trop petite pour aller seule aux vacances.

She’s too small to go on vacation alone.

I Learn French Because it’s Sexy

Here’s another reason for you to learn French, although you may already know it. But, let’s get back to our topic. So, talking about causes and consequences is definitely an important aspect of speaking any language, French included. Cause and consequence represent the core of people’s thinking process, and therefore a basic way to express yourself in French. 

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