French is one of the many languages whose text corpora are included in Sketch Engine, a tool for discovering how language works. Sketch Engine is designed for linguists, lexicologists, lexicographers, researchers, translators, terminologists, teachers and students working with French to easily discover what is typical and frequent in the language and to notice phenomena which would go unnoticed without a large sample of French text.

Sketch Engine has tools to identify and analyse collocations, synonyms and antonyms, examples of use in context, keywords or terms. Frequency word lists of French single-word or multi-word expressions of various types can be generated. Even users without any technical knowledge can create their own French corpus using the Sketch Engine's intuitive built-in tool.

Tools to work with French text corpora

To work with the French language, Sketch Engine offers the following tools:

French Word Sketch

Word Sketch is the easiest way to get an at-a-glance overview of a word’s behaviour. Collocations are displayed in categorized lists to identify strong and weak collocates easily. more»

Available Word Sketches for user corpora: Full-featured Sketch grammar.

Word Sketch difference will compare two word sketches and will indicate which collocates tend to combine with one word or the other. The information can be used to avoid mistakes in word choice or to study the differences between two words with a similar meaning. more»

French concordance

The concordancer included in Sketch Engine can be used to display a list of examples (called concordance) of the search word or phrase as it appears in French language text corpora. The search will display the keyword with some context to the right and context to the left of the keyword (KWIC concordance). more»

French term extraction

Terminology extraction is a feature of Sketch Engine which automatically identifies single-word and multi-word terms in a subject-specific French text by comparing it to a general French corpus. The tool is aimed at translators, terminologists, ESP teachers and anyone who needs to deal with domain texts. The screen with results includes links to example sentences and Wikipedia definitions. more»

Bilingual term extraction

Parallel corpora are used to extract terms in two languages simultaneously and display a terminology list with translations into the other language. more»

French thesaurus

The thesaurus is a feature that automatically generates a list of words similar in meaning to the keyword. more»

French word lists

The word list feature will generate a frequency list of all words that appear in a text or corpus. A very large corpus can be used to generate a list of all words that exist in French or all words that start, contain or end with specific characters. Advanced options can be used to generate lists of grammatical categories or parts of speech used in a corpus together with their frequencies. more»

N-grams in French

Generating a list of N-grams contained in a text makes it possible to identify and study patterns and notice phenomena related to multi-word units (MWU) in French that cannot be detected by other tools. more»

List of available French corpora

  • trial – available to both trial users as well as paying subscribers
  • main – only available to paying subscribers
  • on demand – access to the corpus is subject to specific terms, click the corpus name for details
CorpusAccess policySize in words
Araneum Francogallicum Maius [2015] main 933,688,995
Belgian parliamentary debates (ParlaMint 2.1) trial 30,865,918
Belgian parliamentary debates (ParlaMint 2.1, CoNLL format) trial 30,864,767
CHILDES French Corpus main 2,583,460
DGT-Translation Memory parallel – French main 58,224,781
ELEXIS French Web 2020 main 1,069,392,783
ELEXIS French Web 2020 (frTenTen20) WSD sample main 2,099,651
EUR-Lex 2/2016 parallel – French trial 677,063,993
EUR-Lex judgments 12/2016 parallel – French trial 48,023,524
Europarl spoken parallel – French trial 59,145,988
Europarl spoken parallel – French open 16,815,290
Frantext (French literature of the 18th-20th century) main 15,573,070
Frantext (French literature of the 18th-20th century), without trends main 15,573,070
French corpus of 88,000 SMS (88milSMS) trial 1,206,663
French Drama Corpus main 12,822,260
French parliamentary debates (ParlaMint 2.1) trial 32,214,147
French parliamentary debates (ParlaMint 2.1, CoNLL format) trial 32,176,380
French Trends trial 662,057,252
French Web 2008 (v2 with lempos) main 104,705,211
French Web 2010 (frWaC) main 1,330,564,200
French Web 2012 (frTenTen12) main 9,889,689,889
French Web 2017 (frTenTen17) main 5,752,261,039
French Web 2020 (frTenTen20) main 15,115,914,647
French Web 2023 (frTenTen23) trial 23,874,070,858
Gutenberg French 2020 main 197,560,500
Old French and Middle French (BFM 2022) main 6,002,552
Open Parallel Corpus (OPUS) – French main 766,833,908
OpenSubtitles 2018 parallel – French main 462,749,061
ParlaTalk Belgium parliamentary debates (lower house) trial 58,073,338
ParlaTalk France parliamentary debates (lower house) trial 61,116,819
ParlaTalk France parliamentary debates (upper house) trial 181,508,579
RapCor1360 - Francophone rap songs trial 735,513
The Digital Parisian Stage Corpus main 172,202
Timestamped JSI web corpus 2014-2016 French trial 1,870,341,756
Timestamped JSI web corpus 2014-2021 French main 6,998,186,326
Timestamped JSI web corpus 2021-03 French main 145,384,862
Timestamped JSI web corpus 2021-04 French main 113,581,013
United Nations Parallel Corpus (UNPC) – French trial 800,980,141