French Word of the Day: Césariser

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French Word of the Day: Césariser

This triple-whammy verb is a good one to know in movie award season - but it has different meanings for the rest of the year.


Why do I need to know césariser?

The 2024 Golden Globes have been and gone; the Oscars are coming in early March. In the meantime, the Baftas are on February 18th, the SAG awards on February 24th – and France’s Césars will be handed out on February 23rd. 

It’s movie awards season. And césariser has a very particular meaning right now. But it also has other meanings, depending on context.

What does it mean?

This verb has several meanings. At this time of year, césariser – pronounced sez-ahh-reez-ay – means to honour with the award of a César (often described as the 'French Oscars'). This is the most modern of its meanings.


It is also the verb medical experts may use to describe the performing of a caesarean delivery, the surgical procedure by which one or more babies are delivered through an incision in the mother's abdomen. 

And, for centuries it has also suggested someone who acts as if they are in absolute charge of events, like Caesar.

Use it like this

Cet acteur a été césarisé deux fois – This actor has been awarded a César twice.

J’ai vu la salle des accouchées : il y a eu une césarisée et une future mère – I saw the delivery room: there was a [woman who had undergone] caesarean and a mother-to-be.

Agir comme César, avec ambition – act like Caesar, with ambition.


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