Exploring the depths of family relationships in French opens doors to more authentic and meaningful communication. Terms like “husband,” “wife,” “uncle,” and “aunt” are not just words but precious bonds that reflect the cultural and emotional richness of families. Understanding these terms is key to building strong connections and expressing love and respect within the family unit. In this article, we’ll cover and list the names of all the family members in French for you. Keep reading!

Immediate Family Members (Membres de la famille immédiate)

“Get ready for a family fiesta! Here are the VIPs of your everyday adventures.”

French TermEnglish Term
la famillethe family
un ménagea household
les parentsthe parents
le pèrethe father
la mèrethe mother
les enfantsthe children
le filsthe son
la fillethe daughter
le frèrethe brother
la sœurthe sister
un fils uniquean only son
une fille uniquean only daughter
les jumeauxTwins, twin boys
les jumellestwin sisters

Next, Hierarchy in the Family

“Who’s who in the family tree? Let’s unveil the titles and roles!”

French TermEnglish Translation
le fils aînéolder son
le fils cadetyounger son
la fille aînéeolder daughter
la fille cadetteyounger daughter
le frère aînéolder brother
le frère cadetyounger brother
la sœur aînéeolder sister
la sœur cadetteyounger sister
le petit-fils aînéolder grandson
le petit-fils cadetyounger grandson
la petite-fille aînéeolder granddaughter
la petite-fille cadetteyounger granddaughter
l’oncle aînéolder uncle
l’oncle cadetyounger uncle
la tante aînéeolder aunt
la tante cadetteyounger aunt
le cousin aînéolder male cousin
le cousin cadetyounger male cousin
la cousine aînéeolder female cousin
la cousine cadetteyounger female cousin
le neveu aînéolder nephew
le neveu cadetyounger nephew
la nièce aînéeolder niece
la nièce cadetteyounger niece
le beau-frère aînéolder brother-in-law
le beau-frère cadetyounger brother-in-law
la belle-sœur aînéeolder sister-in-law
la belle-sœur cadetteyounger sister-in-law

Extended Family (Famille élargie)

“Zooming out for a bigger picture! Meet the whole clan beyond the core family.”

French TermEnglish Term
CousineFemale cousin
CousinMale cousin

Couples in French (Couples en français)

“Love is multilingual! Discover how couples are celebrated in French.”

French TermEnglish Translation
un couplea couple
une famille monoparentalea single-parent family
un couple mariéa married couple
un couple hétéroa heterosexual couple
un couple gaia gay couple
un couple lesbiena lesbian couple
un couple de lesbiennesa couple of lesbians
conjoints de faitcommon-law partners (Québec)
un couple pacséa common-law couple (France)
un maria husband
une femmea wife
un épouxa male spouse
une épousea female spouse
un conjoint, une conjointea committed partner
un copaina boyfriend
une copinea girlfriend
un amanta [male] lover
une amantea [female] lover
une maîtressea [female] lover on the side
une aventurean affair
un divorcéa divorced man
une divorcéea divorced woman
un veufa widower
une veuvea widow

Family Through Marriage (Famille par le mariage)

“When families blend, magic happens! Meet the extended family through marriage.”

French TermEnglish Term

Step, Adoptive and Foster families (Familles recomposées, adoptives et d’accueil)

“Family is where love grows, no matter the roots! Let’s celebrate step, adoptive, and foster families.”

French TermEnglish Term
Famille recomposéeBlended family
Famille adoptiveAdoptive family
Parents adoptifsAdoptive parents
Enfant adoptéAdopted child
Famille d’accueilFoster family
Parents d’accueilFoster parents
Enfant placéFoster child
Frère/soeur d’accueilFoster sibling
Famille monoparentaleSingle-parent family
Parent biologiqueBiological parent
Parents adoptifsAdoptive parents
Frères/soeurs adoptifsAdopted siblings

Godparents and Godchildren (Parrains et filleuls)

Guardians of love and wisdom! Dive into the special bond of godparents and godchildren.

French TermEnglish Term
une générationa generation
les grand-parentsthe grandparents
un grand-pèrea grandfather
une grand-mèrea grandmother
les petits-enfantsthe grandchildren
un petit-filsa grandson
une petite-fillea granddaughter

These terms cover various contexts in which godparents and godchildren are mentioned, including baptism, confirmation, first communion, and weddings.

French Family Nicknames (Surnoms de famille française)

From ‘papy’ to ‘neveu,’ let’s explore the sweet and quirky world of French family nicknames.

French NicknameEnglish Equivalent
FranginBro (informal)
FrangineSis (informal)
P’tit frèreLittle brother
P’tite sœurLittle sister

Common Family Phrases in Day-to-Day Situations

Everyday connections, timeless expressions. Here are some common family phrases used in day-to-day situations- 

  • “Comment va ta famille?” in English it will be “How is your family?”
  • “J’ai une grande famille” in English it will be “I have a big family.”
  • “Je vais rendre visite à mes parents ce week-end” in English it will be “I am going to visit my parents this weekend.”
  • “Mon frère est très proche de moi” in English it will be “My brother is very close to me.”
  • “Ma sœur et moi sommes comme des meilleures amies” in English it will be “My sister and I are like best friends.”
  • “Nous avons un chien et un chat comme animaux de compagnie” in English it will be “We have a dog and a cat as pets.”
  • “Ma grand-mère est très gentille et attentionnée” in English it will be “My grandmother is very kind and caring.”
  • “Mon oncle habite à la campagne” in English it will be “My uncle lives in the countryside.”
  • “Ma cousine est en train de préparer son mariage” in English it will be “My cousin is preparing for her wedding.”
  • “Nous organisons une réunion de famille le mois prochain” in English it will be “We are organizing a family gathering next month.”


Understanding familial terms in French is crucial for effective communication in daily life. By using the vocabulary provided, individuals can foster stronger connections and show appreciation for their family members. Whether it’s addressing parents, siblings, or extended family, using the right terms demonstrates respect and strengthens bonds within French-speaking communities.

Check out our article on Fruits in French, Vegetables in French, and Colours in French. Or to find more such vocabulary, go to our blog page!

Frequently Asked Questions 

How to ask about family members in French?

You can ask about family members in French by using questions like “Comment s’appelle ta/ton [family member]?” (What’s the name of your [family member]?) or “Quel âge a ta/ton [family member]?” (How old is your [family member]?). These phrases help initiate conversations about family relationships.

How do I introduce my family in French?

Introducing your family in French can be done with phrases like “Voici ma famille” (Here is my family) or “Je vous présente ma famille” (I introduce you to my family). These expressions help you share information about your family members politely and engagingly.

Is learning family names in French confusing?

At first, the array of family names in French might seem daunting, especially with the variations for extended family members and hierarchy. But fear not! With practice and context-based learning, you’ll find yourself mastering these terms with ease. Remember, exposure to conversations and materials related to family can be your best ally in this journey.