Bises / bisous (at the end of a letter - correspondence)

Discussion in 'French-English Vocabulary / Vocabulaire Français-Anglais' started by maiadjinn, Nov 15, 2009.

  1. maiadjinn New Member

    In French, we usually write "bise" or "bisou" at the end of a mail or a letter when we write to a friend.

    What do you write in English? Would "cheers" be correct?

    Moderator note: multiple threads merged to create this one
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 25, 2010
  2. BellaDancer

    BellaDancer Senior Member

    I often write "xo" or "xoxo" to close friends and family.

    x means kiss, o means hug, but if you write "hugs and kisses" (never "kisses and hugs") that would be more demonstrative -- more what you would say to your child or spouse.
  3. maiadjinn New Member

    Isn't there a way to finish the letter or mail, without crosses ?
  4. Lionel Mandrake

    Lionel Mandrake New Member

    English, The Queen's
    "Cheers" is so casual as to be dismissive. Try: Yours, Best, As ever, Love (although somewhat strong for acquaintances, "love" can be used between non-lover friends)
  5. BellaDancer

    BellaDancer Senior Member

    Yes, these are good choices.

    I will often use, "Warm regards," or "Warmest regards," with close colleagues.

    Quite friendly, but not SO friendly: "Regards" or "Best regards."

    "Best," is used very often, although I am literal enough to always wonder, "best what?" But it is very common, friendly but used in business emails.
  6. RobinC

    RobinC Member

    English - US
    I have written Hugs, (my name) to people I would actually hug if they were there.
  7. Souxie

    Souxie Senior Member

    South of France
    French - France

    J'ai reçu un sms aujourd'hui qui dit: "Voici mon numéro 06 00 00 00 00. A bientôt pour un resto ou un café? Bises. Patricia"

    Je me demandais commet dire bises dans ce contexte, en sachant que bises est chaleureux, mais sans exubérance:
    - See you soon at a restaurant or for coffee? X. Patricia
    _ ...Kisses. Patricia

    Toute autre suggestion serait appréciée :)
  8. amg8989 Senior Member

    English-United Sates
    bises is just short and familiar for the casual bisous
  9. Souxie

    Souxie Senior Member

    South of France
    French - France
    Sorry maybe I wasn't clear enough, I'm looking for a way to say bises in this context in English. Is kisses the good translation? Or the "X" ? Or something else better ?
  10. campeol Member

    English - Canada
    I'd say 'kisses' is okay, though 'x' would be better as 'xoxo' (the x on its own might be confusing). 'Hugs' wouldn't mean the same thing as bises, but it would also work in that context.
  11. amg8989 Senior Member

    English-United Sates
    yea I've had a similar problem from my experience in France, I mean I understand it there, but I just feel that it's a culture difference and that trying to directly translate it to some degree is a bit murky.

    I guess the closest I can think of is "take care" but that doesn't exactly please me perfectly.
  12. la grive solitaire

    la grive solitaire Senior Member

    United States, English
    Hi Souxie,

    I'd say: Hugs and kisses / Lots of hugs and kisses
  13. Souxie

    Souxie Senior Member

    South of France
    French - France
    Merci amg, campeol and la grive :)

    Hmmm; interesting! Why, campeol ?

    la grive :), don't you think Hugs and kisses / Lots of hugs and kisses are stronger than the neutral -but affectionate- bises?
  14. amg8989 Senior Member

    English-United Sates
    my problem I've had with "hugs and kisses" is that it can be used in French for someone that is not necessarily that close to you, so if you were to say that in the US, it would just seem awkward to me--I mean in France I would say with my boyfriend's parents, bisous, je vous embrace, etc. However, in the US I just would feel weird saying that. I guess it's a matter of preference and comfort. If you are fine saying hugs and kisses then it works.
  15. la grive solitaire

    la grive solitaire Senior Member

    United States, English
    I wondered about that as I was replying... :) Perhaps it's closer to Grosses bises ? but French friends who are bilingual seem to use them interchangeably... I suppose it depends on whom you're writing to, but in English it's just an affectionate closing and means the same as XXXOOO
  16. Souxie

    Souxie Senior Member

    South of France
    French - France
    Oui, je pense que ce sont des formes plus proches de grosses bises, donc la formule est plus affectueuse. C'est difficile à traduire, bises!
    Campeol n'a pas répondu :)? Pourquoi x seul peut être ambigu ?
  17. Flynnzane Senior Member

    french, english
  18. campeol Member

    English - Canada
    Je m'excuse, je viens de lire le reste du discussion =). Cela peut être ambigu parce que, personellement, je n'ai jamais vu le 'x' tout seul - il est toujours écrit avec des 'o's. Si un ami m'avait envoyé un sms qui se terminait par 'x', j'aurais supposé que c'était une faute de frappe. En effet, pour moi 'xoxo' a l'air mieux. Mais évidemment l'usage varie - ou bien j'ai beaucoup à apprendre sur ce sujet ; ). Je trouve le lien de Flynnzane très intéressant...
  19. Kelly B

    Kelly B Senior Member

    USA English
    Depending on who it is, I'd probably use Love, Patricia. It is more casual than it looks, at least in US English.
  20. Souxie

    Souxie Senior Member

    South of France
    French - France
    Même entre hommes et femmes, Kelly?

    Et à propos de l'utilisation d'un x tout seul en fin de correspondance, j'ai reçu ça placé après la signature d'email envoyés par un anglais:" Paul. x " et parfois un grand X. Je suppose que l'usage varie selon AE et BE.
  21. KateH New Member

    Hertfordshire, UK
    English (UK)
    I know it's a little late, but I thought I would add my thoughts to this thread. I lived in France for a year and found that my french friends all signed their text messages/emails/letters with 'bisous'.

    The equivalent in the UK is definitely 'x'.

    For example I would always sign an email/letter to a friend

    Kate x

    Everyone I know does this.
  22. 88888888 New Member

    English-United States
    Overall Bises does not translate well. Love is also strong and I would personally never use it unless I was writing to a family member. X is also ambiguous. XOXO is also typically only used with best friends or family. As for ending an email with a friend/classmate/informal colleague you could use...(or at least this is how I end a letter)

    -take care,
    -talk to you soon,
    -Have a good one,
  23. overdue Member

    Californian English
    My grandma used to leave her lipstick stained kiss on the back of envelops and write, inside a drawn heart, "SWAK," or Sealed With A Kiss.
    This thread reminded of that, and I'm thinking I might revive it with my friends and family :)

    In corresponding with french friends and close clients in English, I write "bises"; with not so close French clients, I write "all the best" or "best regards"; with American friends and family, I write "xoxoxoxo" or when feeling silly with American friends, something like "sloppy kisses"; with older American family members and their friends who are as close as aunts and uncles, I write "love" or "much love"; in casual conversation with American friends, I write "later,"
  24. jcd44 New Member

    English - USA

    NO 'X' without the 'O' 'XO' = bises, and is for friends.
    Other salutations: Best, Warmly, All good wishes
    à bientôt = See you soon! 'Til then! (if you've planned a meeting)

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