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A Dictionary of French Building Terms: Essential for Renovators, Builders and Home-owners [Paperback]

Richard Wiles
3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
RRP: 12.99
Price: 10.39 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

3 April 2006
This essential dictionary and phrase book provides every term you need to know when buying, maintaining, renovating or building a home in France. Accessible and comprehensive, it includes the technical words you won't find in an ordinary dictionary for tools and equipment and every aspect of painting, carpentry, roofing, plumbing and drainage. It also equips you with terminology for planning structural changes such as extensions and determining boundaries. An appendix of emergency phrases will make this a book you'll want to keep by the phone at all times. Whether you own a home or work in France, this book will help you talk to French tradesmen with authority and avoid costly misunderstandings as you pull down the language barrier brick by brick.

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A Dictionary of French Building Terms: Essential for Renovators, Builders and Home-owners + A Dictionary and Phrasebook of French Medical Terms: With an Introduction to the French Medical System
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Product details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Summersdale (3 April 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1840244941
  • ISBN-13: 978-1840244946
  • Product Dimensions: 13.2 x 19.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 59,898 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

In addition to his current series of travel genre books on his life in France, Richard Wiles has written about do-it-yourself and home interest topics for more than 30 years, and is an authority on period home renovation. He also writes and edits books on social history based around images from leading photographic archives. He has contributed to major magazines, including Ideal Home, House Beautiful, Traditional Homes, Period Living, Practical Householder, and Do It Yourself. He also developed successful partwork magazine series including the best-selling Garden Magic, established and ran the photographic features agency Houses & Interiors for more than a decade, and has written and edited more than a dozen books on topics from home improvement and gardening to social history and photography.

Product Description


"Includes hundreds of up-to-date words that you won't find in an
ordinary dictionary!"
-- Brit Mag, May - June 2007

... plain alphabeticalised sailing. There are key words for every possible scenario. ...this is what we have all been waiting for. -- Living France Magazine, August 2006

The practical know-how to turn your pie-in-the-sky scheme into
-- The Mail on Sunday

This is what we have all been waiting for. --Living France magazine

About the Author

Richard Wiles is the author of the bestselling Bon Courage! He lives in France

Inside This Book (Learn More)
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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars helpful for DIY 9 May 2008
By seemore
Very useful for basic building materials and tools but really only for DIY use. If you're doing a complete refurb with French builders or setting up your trade in France then spend a bit more money on the "Concise Dictionary of House Building Terms", don't be frightened by the price, it's well worth it. I own both copies and this one stays on the bookshelf most of the time, and the other is on site or in the van.
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27 of 29 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Helpful.. if you have time on your hands. 9 Nov 2006
We purchased this before we moved to France to help us obtain quotations etc., on a property we own. The book is in ten sections of different trades - not in alphabetical order - so if you want a word, you have to hunt through all the ten sections to find the right one, if it is there at all. This may be OK going from English to French, but if you have a French word and you don't know which trade it comes under (because you don't know the word, right?) you are left hunting between the ten sections and your regular dictionary as well. If at the back there was a complete list of French to English, then English to French as well as the ten sections, It would be getting 5 stars, however it doesn't so it fails as a dictionary, as it's not in alphabetical order. Shame.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars We could have done with this book years ago! 16 Nov 2006
This book even makes good bedtime reading. We have found it most useful and now even know the French names of building and decorating items we don't even need. I particularly liked the breakdown of terms into easily definable areas of renovation. Keep a copy in the car for handy reference, you never know when one needs a pied-de-biche.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Mason's View 31 Oct 2009
This book is not perfect but for the reasonable book you get, it is exceedingly cheap. I have written my list of requirements hundreds of times using this book and presented it at the builders merchant without a problem. On occasions clarification has been required and where this has happened, I have written the solution in the book (I hate writing in books but have made an exception in this case). When I see things in catalogues and manuals that are not covered in the book, again I write them in. What started out as a reasonable purchase is gradualy becoming invaluable with the notes I am adding based on personal experience. At its price, I can't see where you can go wrong.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Pity it is not in one single section 15 Mar 2011
It looks good on first reading and I thought it would be useful ....BUT once you start getting serious you find it is broken up into different sections which means that you simply cannot find a new strange word unless you can guess rooughly what section it will be in! Also, although it has a good number of words you quickly find things missing (or perhaps I haven't looked in the right section!).
So good for bedtime reading, but no good for serious discussions with the architect ......
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Useful book 8 Jan 2010
We purchased this book to help us with our French renovation project. Unfortunately the book is not laid out in true dictionary form but split into sections according to topic. Unfortunately we found that if we were searching for a French translation we first had to spend time looking through the book trying to guess in which section the word might appear. It's much quicker to purchase and use a comprehensive French/English dictionary, which, confusingly, gives different translations from the ones in this book (if you find them)!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Buy a good dictionary instead 15 Aug 2009
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
All of the terms in this book can be found in a good dictionary like Harper Collins Robert. You won't find the local terms for materials or trades. I find this book useless.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars My husband rates it! 12 Jan 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
My husband, who like many struggles to learn French, finds this book very useful. I also find it very helpful when preparing his quotations for work, even though I am now fluent in French. The French really do appreciate it when the British try to make themselves understood and this book helps my husband to buy his supplies more easily. Recommend it to those who are undertaking works on their home, as an inexpensive handbook of terms, which can be used alongside a normal dictionary.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars very handy
Does everything I hoped it would and it is laid out well, trade by trade. Has been invaluable for our restoration project.
Published 5 months ago by Martin Vowell
4.0 out of 5 stars sub-sections makes looking up a word more difficult - not less
while a dictionary like this is essential if you are contemplating carrying out renovations (or even owning) a property in France, I have found that the sub-sections make looking... Read more
Published 6 months ago by damifu
5.0 out of 5 stars A good read!
This is exactly what we need for our new venture in France! It's clear, easy to use and well laid out.
Published 12 months ago by SW Sharon
2.0 out of 5 stars Disapointed.
The book is usefull for maintaining an existing property, but not for building one.
Important words like hip are not there,i was building a roof at the time and all of the... Read more
Published 18 months ago by Dave
1.0 out of 5 stars Not really essential
Got to say bit dissapointed with the content - would be better off putting the money towards a decent french dictionary..... Read more
Published 19 months ago by Dave B
4.0 out of 5 stars reluctant translator
This is exactly what I need. My partner has a very rustic house in France which we visit about twice a year. Read more
Published 21 months ago by Sharon Crawford16
4.0 out of 5 stars French Building Terms
As I have a renovation to do on our house in Brittany, this book will prove invaluable for this project. Read more
Published on 19 Dec 2011 by Mr. Henry Y. Jones
5.0 out of 5 stars Practical, clear and concise
I purchased this book as I had found that the regular dictionaries just did not cope with the requirements of a renovation project when dealing with the equivalent to Builders... Read more
Published on 6 Aug 2009 by D. S. Hutchinson
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