Parler À ou Parler DE

The French verbs parler à ou parler de can both be translated as “to speak” in English, but they are used in different contexts and have distinct meanings.

Parler à / au / aux / à l’ + PERSON:

This construction is used to express “talking / speaking to” someone. When the verb parler is followed by À + a person or people, you can use the indirect object pronouns LUI or LEUR to replace those people.

The pronoun LUI means “him / her”, and the pronoun LEUR means “them”. The indirect object pronouns LUI and LEUR are only used for people and animals.

Elle parle à sa meilleure amie.
Elle lui parle.
She is talking to her best friend.
She is talking to her.
Nous parlons à nos amis.
Nous leur parlons.
We are talking to our friends.
We are talking to them.

Parler de / du / de la / des / de l’


This construction is used to express “talking / speaking about” a person, place, or a thing.

When the verb parler is followed by DE + a person, place, or a thing, you can use the adverbial pronoun EN to replace those people, places, or things.

In this case, the pronoun EN means “about him / her / them”, “about a place”, or “about a thing”.

The adverbial pronoun EN is used to replace a noun that follows du, de la, de l’, des or a quantity.

Je parle du propriétaire.
J’en parle.
I am talking about the owner.
I am talking about him / her.
Vous parliez des devoirs de maths?Vous en parliez?Were you talking about the math homework?
Were you talking about it?
Ils parlent de leurs résultats.
Ils en parlent.
They are talking about their results.
They are talking about them.

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