Hello and happy new year !

Sorry for my english, I'm french and not very fluent in english. I tried to do my best and progress.

I'm currently searching the english for "deuxième".

In french, they are two words "Second" and "Deuxième". Here is an explication of differences between these two words.

Deuxième is used when it exists a third object, and second is used when there is only two objects. Here is an example with tires of moto and car.

Le second pneu de ma moto est également crevé

My second(?) bike tire is now punctured too


Le deuxième pneu de ma voiture est également crevé

My second(?) car tire is now punctured too

Could you help me, please ?

Thanks a lot,

  • 2
    Another false friend I haven't met before. The translation of deuxième is second. For the bike example, I would translate it as other in English. But there's no rule against using second in English if there are only two things. (And to make things even more confusing, sometimes the right translation of second would be latter.) – Peter Shor Jan 3 '14 at 18:32
  • "Second tire" seems ambiguous, as it doesn't clearly identify a particular tire even though it pretends to. (I've never heard of a tire being referred to as "first", "second", etc in that context.) "Other tire" at least implies that a tire has been discussed previously, and identifies the one being mentioned now as not that one. – cHao Jan 3 '14 at 18:49
  • @cHao: good point; you would probably say "a second tire on my car is now flat", rather than "my second car tire". This is because "my" is usually a definite personal pronoun, and the context calls for an indefinite one. – Peter Shor Jan 3 '14 at 18:56

I think the distinction might be made in English with the two forms of 'other'. Second = ‘the other’. Deuxième = ‘another’.


There is no such distinction in English—we use second for both situations. If you have already mentioned one tire, then you can use other to refer to the second. That is more common when there is no inherent ordering in the items—which is the “first” tire on a bike?

When you have a list of two items, you can use former and latter to refer to the first and second, respectively:

Paul has a smartphone and a camera. The latter has a better lens.

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