French and Spanish Language Comparison

how to ask why in french pourquoi

Do you wanna know how the two most passionate languages are similar?

Let’s talk about the differences and similarities between these romance languages!

Welcome to our French and Spanish language comparison!

About the Spanish language

Before going deeper, let’s talk about the Spanish language. It is a Romance language derived from Vulgar Latin, which in turn came from Classical Latin. It arose in Castile between the 6th century BC and 900 BC, which is why it is also known as the Castilian language.

Spanish is only 20% distance from Latin, being the third closest, after Sardinian and Italian. Of course, Spanish gained a lot of popularity, becoming the second most spoken native language in the world.

Meanwhile French

Meanwhile French is also a Romance language, belonging to the Gallo-Romance group. It emerged in northern France between the 6th and 9th centuries, where the document of the Strasbourg Oaths serves as evidence of its existence.

It´s the oldest written in Proto-Romance and dates from the year 842, an oath of respect for the division following Louis the Pious’ death. The document was written in Latin, Germanic, and a Romance language between Latin and French.

The main European language, spoken in countries such as France, Belgium, Switzerland, Monaco, Luxembourg, and Canada. Slightly less popular than Spanish, it has 77 million native speakers and 267 million French speakers worldwide.

The ninth most widely spoken native language in the world and the fifth most widely spoken language overall. Its growth is due to population increase in some French-speaking regions, such as Africa.

French and Spanish vs. English

Let’s make a comparison of French and Spanish vs. English. Taking into account that they are all Romance languages, i.e. derived from Latin, we can say that they belong to the same family.

Lexical similarities

  • French Vs. English: 40 to 50%
  • Spanish Vs. English: 30 to 50%
  • French vs. Spanish: Close to 75%

This means that French and Spanish are much closer to each other than to English. The reason for so many similarities is that both share the same Romance origin.

French or Spanish more widely spoken

The popularity of both languages is huge, but we can still determine whether French or Spanish is more widely spoken. Through these super interesting data, we will see which of the two has more followers.


  • Official Language in 30 countries.
  • 77 million native speakers.
  • 267 million French speakers in 2021.
  • More-studied language.


  • The official language in 22 countries.
  • 493 million native speakers.
  • 98 million partially proficient speakers.
  • 591 million Spanish speakers in 2021.
  • More total speakers.

How they are alike

French and Spanish, besides being children of the same father, Latin, how they are alike. The Romans conquered France and Spain. During the Roman invasion, Latin prevailed over the native European languages.

Then, with the fall of the Roman Empire, the language also declined. As a result of the conquest, the native languages of these countries disappeared, except for Basque. Later, both countries became major colonizers of much of the world.

They have many similarities

Given that they have many factors in common, it´s normal that they have many similarities. However, aspects such as the French accent are different from Spanish and other European languages. It´s also true that there are many Spanish dialects, especially in the Latin American region.



French: Monde



French: Politique



French: Vin



French: Livre



French: Ecole



French: Arbre



French: Oeuf

Despite having the same origin, French and Spanish are not mutually intelligible. This means that by mastering one, you will not necessarily understand the other. This is possible in some words, especially in writing.

Spanish and French grammar

Spanish and French grammar has undergone major changes from their emergence to the present day. It´s inevitable to see words being born and dying. Let’s get to know a bit about the grammar of these Romance languages.

  • In a simple sentence like this one, the differences are not so great.

El vino es Bueno

The wine is good

French: Le vin est bon

  • Making the sentence more complex, we can observe how the adjective changes places with the object.

El vino tinto es Bueno, pero prefiero un vaso de agua.

Red wine is good, but I prefer a glass of water.

French: Le vin rouge est bon, mais je préfère un verre d’eau.

  • Questions: In English, you add “do” to the beginning of the sentence and close it with a question mark. In French, it begins with “est-ce que”, whose literal meaning is “it is that”. In Spanish, the voice is inflected to raise it and the written language is accompanied by an upside-down question mark at the beginning of the question.
  • Negation: In English and Spanish, we just say “there is no” (no hay), but in French, it´s more complicated.

¿Tiene vino? / No, no hay vino, disculpa.

Do you have wine? / No, there´s no wine, sorry.

French: Est-ce que vous avez de vin? / Non, il n’y a pas de vin, excusez-moi.


The pronunciation of French vs. Spanish is much more complex. This is because the French accent is very different from that of any other Romance language.

You can notice this when you see Hispanics getting along very well with Italians or Portuguese, which is not the case with French. Even if it´s possible to understand the written french language, pronunciation is not easy.

The difficulties start with the vowel sounds, French has 5-6 letters, but 13-15 sounds. English has 5-6 vowels and 19-21 vowel sounds. Spanish has only 5 vowels/vowel sounds.

Which language I should learn

Deciding which language I should learn between French vs. Spanish depends on several factors, mostly personal. The first is to think about why learn a new language.

Whether it is for academic credit, work, or just a hobby. In any case, a second language adds value to your resume.

The advantage is that the French, Spanish, and English alphabets are so similar that you won’t have a hard time learning new signs. And don’t forget that with a little extra dedication you can learn French and Spanish simultaneously!

Spanish vs. French: How similar are they?

Related Posts

AP Spanish Language Practice

Looking to improve your Spanish skills to take your AP exam? Getting the highest score is just a click away! Find the best AP Spanish

English vs Spanish Language

Are you an English speaker and looking to learn Spanish? As siblings descended from Romance languages, they naturally share similarities. Check them out in our

French and Spanish Language Comparison

Do you wanna know how the two most passionate languages are similar? Let’s talk about the differences and similarities between these romance languages! Welcome to

When did Kobe Learn Spanish

Loving father, ideal husband, amazing man, successful Lakers player, businessman, and he also speaks Spanish! Do you know who he is? How could he do

ALTA Spanish Language Test Questions

Are you taking your ALTA language exam? Don’t let it catch you off guard. Check out the ALTA Spanish Language Test Questions for your high

I Hate the Spanish Language

Do you think Spanish is a beautiful and linguistically rich language? What about the negative opinions that hinder your choice to learn it as a

Get a Certificate in French Language

If you ask yourself why should you take the certification course in French, we’ll help you decide in which cases is useful and in which

What does “Doux” mean in French?

Discover the meaning of “doux” in French and its various uses. Learn how to use this common word in everyday conversation and improve your French

Need in French: Avoir Besoin

It’s in the human need to have needs, right? Learning how to express your needs in French is by all means an important step in

German riddles

Looking for some fun ways to practice your German language skills? Check out our collection of German riddles and tongue twisters! Test your wit and

Cheers in French: 8 happy ways to say it

Celebrate in French style! This blog showcases 8 happy ways to say “cheers” in French, perfect for impressing your French-speaking friends. Santé! How to say

Different Ways to Use Fois in French

Fois is a very common French word, used in different contexts. English speakers oftentimes confuse it with the word “temps”. In this lesson, you’ll learn

Funniest French jokes

In this article, we will share some of the funniest French jokes  that will have you laughing out loud. Let’s get started! Funniest French jokes

Funniest Spanish jokes

¡Hola! You’re in for a treat if you love to laugh and speak Spanish. We’ve compiled a list of the funniest Spanish jokes that will

Jokes about French

In this article, we’ll explore the humorous side of French culture through a collection of jokes about French. Let’s get started! Jokes about French Welcome

News in French: free resources

In this article, we will explore a variety of websites, podcasts, TV channels, and other resources that you can use to stay informed about news

Short German jokes

Laugh your way through language learning with our collection of short German jokes. Discover the funniest puns, one-liners, and more in our guide! German humor

The basic Spanish hand gestures

In this blog post, we will explore the most important Spanish hand gestures, and their meanings, providing a guide to effectively communicate with Spanish speakers

Beautiful French words with meaning

Discover the beauty of the French language by learning its meanings. Learn the beautiful French words and its meaning. Beautiful French words A lot of

How do you say “good” in French?

Learn how to say “good” in French with our easy guide. Perfect for beginners and travelers looking to improve their language skills. “Good” in French

How to say “Cat” in French

How to say cat in French? What’s the word for a kitten in French? Learn more about the basic terminologies of our favorite fur pet

Learn French with PDF resources

Do you know that you can learn French with PDF resources? In this article, we will explore the advantages of using PDF resources to learn

Funny French jokes

Welcome to our article on Funny French jokes! Are you ready to simultaneously laugh and learn a little bit about French culture? French humor can

Funny German jokes

Welcome to our article on Funny German jokes! Get ready to chuckle at some of the funniest German jokes. German jokes Germany has a rich

Quotes in France by famous people

In this article, we will explore some of the most memorable and inspiring quotes in France from French people that have been passed down through

Quotes in Spain by famous people

In today’s post, you’ll learn some famous quotes in Spain by famous people. Quotes in Spain Spain has a rich cultural history and has produced

Best German proverbs

This article will explore some of the most popular German proverbs and delve into their meanings and origins. Check this out! German proverbs German proverbs

French Riddles

Learning some French riddles and playing with a French-speaking friend are great ways to practice if you know a little French. French riddles A good

How to translate Good Evening in French

Welcome to our article on translating “Good Evening” into French! Suppose you’re planning a trip to a French-speaking country or want to impress your friends

Some facts about the French mafia

Let’s discover some facts about the French mafia. facts about the French mafia The French Mafia is one of the world’s most dangerous criminal organizations.

Some facts about the Spanish mafia

Let’s discover some facts about the Spanish mafia. Facts about the Spanish mafia The Spanish mafia is one of the most active and widespread criminal

Some facts about the German mafia

Let’s discover some facts about the German mafia.  Facts about the German mafia The German Mafia (; Maffia; from Italian mafiusi, “clan”) is a criminal