en français, Fifi!

leçons 22 à 28 - lessons 22 to 28

en français, Fifi! is a course in basic French for the submissive crossdresser. It is intended to give the student an understanding of the language sufficient to permit him to perform the functions of a maid or secretary without any need to resort to English. Putting a solid emphasis on grammar, this textbook for sissies teaches all the vocabulary that a feminized servant or subordinate should know, using exaggerated examples that will prove as memorable as they are provocative. The would-be speaker will find himself immersed in a world where men wear bras and chastity belts as they seek to please their female superiors with selfless submission, forever fearing shameful punishment.

en français, Fifi! features themes of lingerie discipline, male chastity and men as maids. It should go without saying that, like everything else at brassièred, it is intended for adults only.

leçon 22: la maîtresse punit sa bonne - the mistress punishes her maid

Picture the scene - a maid putting his panties on display as he bends forward and tries to touch his toes, conscious that their thin satin will do little to lessen the impending blows of his mistress's hairbrush against his behind. By now, you should be more than capable of describing what's happening in French, perhaps putting together a sentence like the following:

La maîtresse punit sa bonne pour son erreur The mistress punishes her maid for his mistake

Moreover, you know how to replace the subject of the sentence with a pronoun:

Elle punit sa bonne pour son erreur She punishes her maid for his mistake

Suppose, however, you wanted to replace the object instead. In English, you wouldn't say “The mistress punishes he for his mistakes” unless you wanted to suffer yourself, a subject pronoun not a suitable substitute here. Nor would you want to have to say “her maid” each time, as submissive as it might be to acknowledge yourself as such, with that sort of affectation swiftly losing its novelty. Instead, an object pronoun is called for - “him” in English, allowing you to explain the situation further without sounding unnatural. “The maid was disobedient. His mistress warned him. He continued to ignore her. She punished him for his mistake. He thanked her for his punishment”. Did you spot which words were subject pronouns, object pronouns and possessive pronouns? Study those sentences carefully, and understand the differences between them.

French also distinguishes between subject and object pronouns, but makes things more complicated by the latter needing to go before the verb. For example:

La maîtresse le punit pour son erreur The mistress punishes him for his mistake

Don't make the mistake of trying to read le as “the” here. The context makes it clear that this cannot be the case, as “the punishes” makes no sense. There can only be one person being punished when a mistress and maid are involved, no matter what sort of chastisement the former might choose.

Like other pronouns, object pronouns must agree with the noun they're replacing in terms of gender and number. Moreover, several of them contract when followed by a verb that starts with a vowel, similar to de, je and ne:

me or m' (before a vowel) me
te or t' (before a vowel) you (informal and singular)
le or l' (before a vowel) him, it (when replacing masculine nouns)
la or l' (before a vowel) her, it (when replacing feminine nouns)
nous us
vous you (formal or plural)
les them (masculine and feminine)

Study the following examples to see how object pronouns are used in practice:

Ma femme me punit quand je ne fais pas d'efforts My wife punishes me when I don't make enough of an effort
J'adore te taquiner pendant que tu travailles I love teasing (in a mocking way, taquiner, -er) you while you work
Elle l'ignore malgré ses supplications désespérées She ignores (ignorer, -er) him despite his desperate (désespéré(e)) pleas
L'homme frustré la supplie pour la clé The frustrated (frustré(e)) man begs (supplier, -er) her for the key
Ne fais pas de scène en public, Fifi, tout le monde nous regarde ! Don't make a scene (une scène) in public, Fifi, everyone (tout le monde, literally “all the world”, singular) is watching us!
S'il vous plaît, permettez-moi de vous adorer, Madame Please let me (see lesson 41) worship you, Ma'am
La bonne les polit avec un chiffon doux The maid polishes them with a soft (doux, douce) cloth
Sa maîtresse l'a menotté au radiateur His mistress handcuffed (menotter, -er) him to the radiator

Let's return to our earlier story, and see how it works in French:

La bonne était désobéissante The maid was disobedient
Sa maîtresse l'a averti His mistress warned him
Il a continué à l'ignorer He continued (continuer, -er) to ignore her
Elle l'a puni pour son erreur She punished him for his mistake
Il l'a remerciée pour sa punition He thanked (remercier, -er) her for his punishment

How much easier that is to follow thanks to object pronouns! But how much easier it would be had the maid not been disobedient, and so not required his mistress's discipline! Note how, when he is thanking her for his punishment, the past participle of remercier acquires an extra “e” to agree with the object pronoun. If the misbehaving maid was obliged to thank his mistress's friends after they had each taken turns with the paddle, the sentence would be as follows:

Il les a remerciées pour leur discipline He thanked them for their discipline

Are you similarly grateful? Acknowledge your mistress's authority by saying:

Je vous obéis, Madame I obey you, Ma'am
Je vous sers, Madame I serve you, Ma'am
Je vous adore, Madame I love you, Ma'am

If you were to use the less formal form of “you” in the last sentence, you would get Je t'aime, a familiar phrase that might earn you favour should you be permitted to please your mistress in the bedroom. Whisper it softly in her ear before you begin to worship her body, remembering that these romantic words are still subject to the rules of French grammar - as you now know!

exercices pour la vingt-deuxième leçon - exercises for the twenty second lesson

Translate the following:

  1. Ils les attendaient

  2. Sa patronne le menace

  3. J'aime la servir comme une bonne

  4. Le secrétaire l'a entendue et a répondu immédiatement

  5. Vous me punissez quand je suis désobéissant, Madame

Say the following in French:

  1. She was punishing him with her hairbrush

  2. We looked at him and he looked at us

  3. His mistress corseted him, then she penetrated him

  4. Women harass him because he wears a bra

  5. The size of those cups frightens me, Ma'am

leçon 23: s'habiller comme une bonne - dressing as a maid

In the previous lesson, you learned how to use object pronouns. Knowing that habiller (-er) means “to dress”, you can now make sense of a sentence such as:

Sa femme l'habille comme une bonne His wife dresses him as a maid

While it's fun to play dress-up from time to time, a mistress doesn't want to have to dress her maid every time she wants the chores doing - she expects her servant to present himself for duty appropriately attired all by himself, regardless of whether he wears a silly, frilly little number to amuse her and her friends or a much more mundane uniform for the humdrum chores he has to tackle. A more suitable sentence might therefore be:

Je m'habille comme une bonne I dress myself as a maid

Here the subject and the object of the sentence are the same - you! Indeed, in English, it isn't necessary to specify “myself”, with the meaning remaining the same even if that word is omitted. There can only be one thing you're dressing if you don't specify a different object, with “I dress as a maid” telling everyone who cares to listen that you don an apron to do the housework! The verb can be said to be “reflexive”, because in the absence of an object, the action reflects back on the subject - like looking in a mirror as you put on a frilly pinafore.

French also has reflexive verbs, but their forms start with an indication of their nature in a manner that is similar to the object pronouns you've already seen. Indeed, the previous example is actually using one - s'habiller (“to dress (oneself)”), whose second half conjugates the same as habiller, but has an extra prefix (a reflexive pronoun) that needs to match the subject. Here are some sentences that illustrate its present tense:

Je m'habille avant de commencer mes corvées I dress before starting my chores
Tu t'habille comme je te dis You dress the way I tell you
Il s'habille comme une serveuse pour la fête de sa femme He dresses as a waitress for his wife's party
Elle s'habille de façon très provocante She dresses in a very provocative way
Nous nous habillons en lingerie assortie ce soir We dress in matching lingerie tonight
Vous vous habillez maintenant, Madame ? You are dressing now, Ma'am?
Ils s'habillent comme cela tous les jours They dress like that every day
Elles s'habillent pour attirer l'attention des hommes They dress to attract (attirer, -er) men's attention

If you're being as observant as you should be, you'll note that the il, elle, ils and elles forms do not start with l', as you might have expected, but rather s'. That makes it possible to distinguish Elle s'habille (“she dresses (herself)”) from Elle l'habille (“she dress him”) - an important difference if you're not to misspeak about what your mistress is doing with that corset or bra! Don't be tempted to miss out the pronoun entirely - whereas you can get away with this in English, in French it can make the difference between “to lie down” (s'allonger, -ger) and “to lengthen” (allonger, -ger)!

Because habille starts with a silent “h”, the reflexive pronouns shown above are contracted. Were this not the case, all but the nous and vous reflexive pronouns would end with an “e”. Let's see how that works with se préparer (“to get ready”, -er):

Je me prépare à servir ma maîtresse I get ready to serve my mistress
Tu te prépares à faire les tâches ménagères You get ready to do the housework
Il se prépare à sa punition He prepares for his punishment
Elle se prépare à le pénétrer She is getting ready to penetrate him
Nous nous préparons à sortir We get ready to go out (sortir, see lesson 30)
Vous vous préparez à aller au lit You prepare to go to bed
Ils se préparent pour une longue nuit They prepare for a long (long(ue)) night
Elles se préparent pour la fête They're getting ready for the party

Now we can understand one of the first things you learned to say in French:

Je m'appelle Fifi My name is Fifi (literally “I call myself Fifi)

Appeler is “to call (for, to)”, but s'appeler is “to call (oneself)”. How would you distinguish between “He's called Fifi” and “He calls him Fifi”?

When speaking of past events using le passé composé, reflexive verbs use a form of être rather than avoir as their auxiliary, with the reflexive pronoun coming first. In addition, the past participle must agree with verb's subject in terms of gender and number. For example, with se décider (“to make up one's mind”, a more emphatic form of décider, “to decide”, -er):

Je me suis décidé à être une bonne I have made up my mind to be a maid
Tu t'es décidé à porter un soutien-gorge tous les jours, Fifi You decided to wear a bra every day, Fifi
Il s'est décidé à se confesser à sa femme He made up his mind to confess (confesser, -er) to his wife
Elle s'est décidée à donner une fessée à son mari She decided to spank her husband
Nous nous sommes décidés à ne pas faire l'amour sans ta ceinture de chasteté We decided not to make love (faire l'amour) without your chastity belt
Vous vous êtes décidée à resserrer mon corset, Madame You made up your mind to tighten (resserrer, -er) my corset, Ma'am
Ils se sont décidés à essayer d'éviter les punitions autant que possible They decided to try and avoid (éviter, -er) punishment as much as possible
Elles se sont décidées à ne jamais faire le nettoyage eux-mêmes They decided to never do the cleaning themselves (eux-mêmes, see lesson 44)

If you're wondering why the negatives in ne pas faire and ne jamais faire do not sandwich the verbs, that's because faire is an infinitive - another little quirk that you'll need to know in order to be fluent in French! Your mistress might tell you Je préfère ne pas porter de soutien-gorge - the prerogative of the lady of the house, but not a humble maid who must be brassièred no matter how much you might prefer to go without such a garment!

Fortunately, l'imparfait follows the same simple rules you learned earlier:

Le secrétaire s'habillait pour le travail The secretary was dressing for work

Last, but by no means least, if the infinitive of a reflexive verb follows another verb, then the reflexive pronoun must agree with the subject:

J'aime m'habiller comme une bonne I like to dress as a maid
Tu aimes t'habiller comme une bonne You like to dress as a maid
Il aime s'habiller comme une bonne He like to dress as a maid

In dictionaries, however, you will always find reflexive verbs start with se or s'.

exercices pour la vingt-troisième leçon - exercises for the twenty third lesson

Translate the following:

  1. Elle s'est habillée

  2. Elles s'habillaient

  3. Nous nous appelons Madame Masters et Fifi la soubrette française

  4. Tu t'es préparé pour faire des courses

  5. Sa copine l'habille et il l'habille

Say the following in French:

  1. I'm getting dressed for work, Ma'am

  2. He makes up his mind to always please his wife

  3. We prepared to make love

  4. When he dresses as a woman, his name is Suzette

  5. I decided to dress as a (female) secretary

leçon 24: les bonnes bonnes s'excusent toujours - good maids always apologise

As a maid, you may occasionally be required to explain yourself to your mistress, whether as a result of your shortcomings, or simply to entertain her. Often that needs a reflexive verb, and so you'll need to become comfortable with sentences that start Je me. What story could you paint with the following? Be sure to use past and present tenses appropriately!

se dépêcher (-er) to hurry
se tromper (-er) to make a mistake, to be wrong
s'arrêter (-er) to stop
s'agenouiller (-er) to kneel
s'excuser (-er) to apologise

Despite their additional pronouns, these verbs are no different to regular ones when it comes to negation, being sandwiched by the two haves of a negative just as you might expect:

Je ne m'arrête pas, Madame I'm not stopping, Ma'am
Une bonne bonne ne s'arrête jamais de travailler A good maid never stops working

Nor must good maids allow themselves to become any of the following:

s'ennuyer (-uyer) to get bored
se fatiguer (-er) to get tired
se fâcher (-er) to get angry

With the vous form of a reflexive verb, you can speak of what mistress does - respectfully, of course!

s'allonger (-ger) to lie down
s'amuser (-er) to have fun
se divertir (-ir) to distract or amuse oneself

There are many reflexive verbs that you could use about either yourself or your mistress, albeit in different ways. How might you use Je me and Vous vous for each of the following? What other words do you need to suitably describe your subordinate status, or else to show your mistress's superiority?

se coucher (-er) to go to bed
se réveiller (-er) to wake up
se lever (-e_er) to get up (in the morning)
se changer (-ger) to change clothes
se déguiser (-er) to dress up (in a costume or outfit)
se déshabiller (-er) to undress
s'habituer à (-er) to become accustomed to
se regarder (-er) to look at oneself

There are also the reflexive forms of three verbs you've already learned:

s'inquiéter (-é_er) to worry
se rappeler (-eler) to remember
se soumettre (-mettre) to submit oneself

Have a look at these examples to get a feel for reflexive pronouns:

La bonne s'agenouille lorsque sa maîtresse entre dans la pièce The maid kneels when (lorsque) his mistress enters the room
Le secrétaire se dépêche de faire plaisir à sa patronne exigeante The secretary hurries to please his demanding (exigeant(e)) boss
Son mari se réveille tôt à cause de sa cage de chasteté très serrée Her husband wakes up early because of his very tight chastity cage
L'homme se regarde dans le miroir et rougit The man looks at himself in the mirror and blushes
Les femmes se divertissent aux dépens de l'homme soumis The women amuse themselves at the expense of the submissive man
Non, Madame, je me rappelle trop bien ma dernière punition ! No, Ma'am, I remember too well my last punishment!
Il s'inquiète constamment de ses bas parce qu'ils sont très délicats He constantly worries about his stockings because they are very delicate
Les bons maris se soumettent toujours à leur femme Good husbands always submit to their wives

Remember, the passé composé tense of reflexive verbs requires a form of être, and the past participle must agree with the subject. Study the following until you understand, and compose your own sentences accordingly.

Je suis navré, Madame, je me suis trompé lourdement I am sorry, Ma'am, I made a big mistake
Tu t'es excusé et donc tu es pardonné You apologised and so you are forgiven
Il s'est déshabillé et s'est allongé sur le lit He undressed and lay down on the bed
Elle s'est changée pour sortir avec ses amies She got changed to go out with her friends
Nous nous sommes habillés en lingerie et nous nous sommes amusés comme des filles We put on lingerie and had fun like girls
Vous vous êtes plainte de mon manque de respect, Madame, et puis vous vous êtes fâchée contre moi You complained (se plaindre, see lesson 27) about my lack of respect, Ma'am, and then you got angry at me
Ils se sont fatigués après avoir été à la disposition des femmes toute la journée They got tired after having been at the beck and call of the women all day
Elles se sont diverties à claquer les bretelles de son soutien-gorge They entertained themselves snapping (claquer, -er) his bra straps

exercices pour la vingt-quatrième leçon - exercises for the twenty fourth lesson

Translate the following:

  1. Ils se changent pour la fête et s'habillent en soubrettes

  2. Il s'excusait mais elle s'ennuyait

  3. Les femmes s'amusent à le promener

  4. Elle s'amuse pendant que son mari frotte la baignoire

  5. La bonne se déshabille mais n'enlève pas son soutien-gorge

Say the following in French:

  1. His mistress lies down

  2. The submissive man undresses for his punishment

  3. He woke up and dressed as a maid

  4. The businesswoman was angry with her secretary (use a reflexive verb in the imperfect)

  5. I never get tired of cleaning toilets

leçon 25: le maquillage - make-up

Are you expected to make your face look less manly as a matter of course, or can you only dream of doing more than dusting the cosmetics on your mistress's vanity table? Perhaps you're permitted to wear a little lipstick for special occasions, showing your submission with lips painted a provocative red, or maybe you must practise your skills on your own nails before treating your mistress to a manicure. Whether you're need to go out shopping for the latest shades, or simply want to describe how she looks so divine, you need to know the necessary vocabulary, so let's turn our attention to powder and paint!

As you might expect, many of the verbs associated with a woman making herself look her best are reflexive. How might you describe your own make-up routine?

se maquiller (-er) to put on make-up
se brosser les cheveux (-er) to brush one's hair (un cheveu)
se faire les ongles to do one's nails (un ongle)
se raser les jambes (-er) to shave one's legs (une jambe)
peindre (-indre, see lesson 27) to paint (nails, lips, face)

Did you note how les was used where you might have expected ses? In French, the definite article is generally used when referring to parts of someone's own body, with possessive adjectives reserved for emphasis unless another person else is involved. In the former case, using a reflexive verb helps indicate ownership. Thus, you might say Je me brosse les cheveux (“I brush my hair”, with cheveux being plural when speaking of more than just a single hair), but Je brosse ses cheveux (“I brush her hair”) if you have the privilege of helping your mistress prepare herself for a party. Ta maîtresse a les cheveux blonds, bruns, roux, noirs ou blancs? Ils sont longs ou courts? Et tes cheveux?

Just as in English, French cosmetics often have fanciful names for their colours. Is it enough to be able to say just rouge or rose, or ought a sissy who loves lipstick be able to go into much more detail when women ask you what you're wearing? Studying cosmetics will teach you adjectives such as ardent(e) (“blazing”) and fumé(e) (“smoked”) which you may never use elsewhere, but how emasculating it would be to speak of such subtleties with lips shaded so womanly! Of course, knowing how to say épais (“thick”) or forte (“strong”) may come in useful for more than just your mascara and eyeshadow, but who'll really listen to what you're saying when they're looking at those heavy black lashes?

les yeux - the eyes

mon fard à paupières my eyeshadow
mon eye-liner my eye-liner
mon mascara my mascara
mon recourbe-cils my eyelash curler
mes faux cils my false eyelashes (un cil)

les sourcils - the eyebrows

ma pince à épiler my tweezers
mon crayon à sourcils my eyebrow pencil
ma brosse à sourcils my eyebrow brush

les joues et la peau - the cheeks and the skin

mon fond de teint my foundation
mon pinceau fond de teint my foundation brush
ma poudre my powder
ma houppette my powder puff
mon correcteur my concealer
mon fard à joues my blusher
mon parfum my perfume
mon rasoir my razor
ma crème à raser my shaving cream
mon démaquillant my make-up remover

le bouche - the mouth

mon rouge à lèvres my lipstick
mon crayon à lèvres my lip pencil
mon brillant à lèvres my lip gloss
mon baume pour les lèvres my lip balm
mon pinceau à lèvres my lip brush

les ongles - the nails

mon vernis à ongles my nail polish
mon dissolvant my nail polish remover
ma lime à ongles my nail file
mes ciseaux à ongles my nail scissors
ma pince à ongles my nail clippers
mes faux ongles (en acrylique, en gel) my false nails (acrylic, gel)

les cheveux - the hair

mon shampooing my shampoo
mon conditionneur my conditioner
ma laque my hairspray
mon peigne my comb
mon fer à friser my curling iron
mes bigoudis my curlers
ma perruque my wig
mon chouchou my scrunchie

différentes façons d'être maquillé - different ways to be made up

Le secrétaire est maquillé comme une femme tout le temps The male secretary is made up like a woman all the time
La bonne est maquillée, mais il est pourtant évidemment que c'est un homme The maid is wearing make-up, but it is nevertheless obvious that he is a man
Les femmes d'affaires sont bien maquillées, et les hommes ne peuvent pas s'arrêter de les regarder The businesswomen are well made up, and the men can't (pouvoir, see lesson 39) stop themselves looking at them
La femmelette est trop maquillée, il est maquillé comme une voiture volée The sissy is wearing too much make-up, he is “made up like a stolen car”

Does your mistress like you to be made up “like a stolen car” so that her friends will laugh at how ludicrous your face looks, or is that a peril to be avoided on pain of punishment? Rather than require such a provocative idiom, a more modest approach to make-up may be preferable - something that, like your vocabulary, requires practice, practice, practice in order to be mastered.

devant le miroir de maquillage - in front of the make-up mirror

Comment t'es tu maquillé aujourd'hui, Fifi ? How are you made up today, Fifi?
Je porte du rouge à lèvres rose, du fard à paupières assorti, et du vernis à ongles assorti aussi, Madame I'm wearing pink lipstick, matching eyeshadow and matching nail polish too, Ma'am
Ton maquillage est assorti parfaitement à ta robe, tes talons hauts et ta perruque ! Tu es ma bonne rose, n'est-ce pas ? Your make-up perfectly matches (être assorti à) your dress, your high heels and your wig! You're my pink maid, aren't you?
Oui, Madame, et je porte un soutien-gorge rose et une culotte rose aussi Yes, Ma'am, and I'm wearing a pink bra and pink panties too
Eh bien, ne reste pas là ! Polis ce miroir ! Well, don't just stand there! Polish that mirror!

exercices pour la vingt-cinquième leçon - exercises for the twenty fifth lesson

Translate the following:

  1. Elle s'est brossée les cheveux

  2. La femmelette a peint ses ongles

  3. Il utilise la crème à raser de sa femme

  4. Les soubrettes portaient de grandes perruques roses

  5. Le fard à paupières de l'homme est assorti à son rouge à lèvres

Say the following in French:

  1. She uses a powder puff to put on powder

  2. I love to wear red lipstick

  3. I shave my legs before putting on stockings

  4. His boss was wearing black eye-shadow

  5. His nails are bright pink, but he does not have any nail polish remover

leçon 26: que doit faire une bonne ? - what should a maid do?

By now, you should be familiar with quite a few irregular verbs. Unfortunately for a maid who has to be fluent in French, these don't stop at just avoir and être, there being many more that you must know how to conjugate. Indeed, in order to translate the previous sentence, you would need to use one twice - devoir, which depending on context can mean “must” or “have to”. There are many things that you must do as a maid, and equally many that you must not, making a knowledge of this irregular verb vital for success.

Let's start by considering its present tense. Study the following examples:

Je dois toujours obéir à ma maîtresse I must always obey my mistress
Tu dois porter un soutien-gorge chaque fois que possible You must wear a bra whenever possible
Il doit s'excuser pour son impolitesse He must apologise for his rudeness
Elle doit encore être dans le bain She must still be in the bath
Nous devons te punir pour améliorer ton comportement We have to punish you to improve (améliorer, -er) your behaviour
Vous devez être fatigué, Madame, laissez-moi masser vos pieds You must be tired, Madame, let me massage (masser, -er) your feet (un pied)
Ils doivent rester à la maison et faire le ménage They have to stay (rester, -er, see lesson 30) at home and do the cleaning
Elles doivent être entièrement satisfaites de ton service They must be entirely satisfied (satisfait(e)) with your service

Did you notice how devoir sometimes indicates an obligation, for example, having to wear a bra, but on other occasions is more of a supposition, as in the case of the mistress's tired feet? A maid would hardly attempt to impose aching soles upon the woman he serves, the reverse being far more likely the case, but any man who has spent hours in high heels will surely be able to empathise with a woman wanting to slip off her shoes! The English word “must” can be used in both ways too, but devoir can also express an expectation (“is supposed to”), or alternatively suggest an inevitability (“is bound to”), yet another sense appropriate for your obedience. You are not only supposed to do everything your mistress says, but you owe it to her - indeed, you are bound to obey because you are her maid.

The past participle of devoir is , with the passé composé being a most appropriate way to refer to punishments. Consider the following example, and then describe past obligations of your own - things that you may not have enjoyed at the time, but were an inevitable consequence of displeasing your mistress.

L'homme soumis a dû porter une gaine-combinaison inconfortable toute la journée comme une punition The submissive man had to wear an uncomfortable corselette all day as a punishment

As usual, the imparfait past tense only requires you to know the nous form of devoir, from which you can construct the necessary forms:

Il devait porter une ceinture de chasteté après avoir été pris la main dans le sac He was having to wear a chastity belt after having been caught red-handed (literally “caught the hand in the bag”, using prendre, see lesson 29)

To speak of something you mustn't do, simply put devoir in the negative:

Je ne dois pas enlever mon soutien-gorge sans permission I must not take off my bra without permission
Les bonnes ne doivent jamais désobéir à leur maîtresse Maids must never disobey their mistress

que dois-tu savoir ? - what must you know?

Another essential irregular verb is savoir, “to know”. When followed by the infinitive form of another verb, it means to know how to do something, allowing you to announce your abilities. Alternatively, it can be followed by a fact - perhaps that you are merely a maid and that you must obey your mistress, as obvious as that is when you're wearing an apron and dress. In this second form, the word que (which contracts to qu') is often used the same way that “that” would be in English, distinguishing the start of the sentence from the subordinate clause that follows. There are also a variety of French idioms that use savoir, and it has even made it into the English language in the form of the phrase je ne sais quoi (literally “I don't know what”) to describe an elusive, but often pleasing quality.

Je sais faire tout le ménage I know how to do all the housework
Tu sais que tu es seulement une bonne et je suis ta maîtresse You know you are only a maid and I am your mistress
Il sait qu'il est un mari soumis quand il porte un soutien-gorge He knows that he is a submissive husband when he wears a bra
Elle sait le maîtriser avec des vêtements féminins She knows how to control (maîtriser, -er) him with feminine (féminin(e)) clothing
Nous savons tous les deux que tu as besoin de discipline stricte We both (tous les deux) know you need strict (strict(e)) discipline
Vous savez mieux, Madame You know best, Ma'am
Ils savent rendre leur femme heureuse They know how to make their wives happy (rendre heureux)
Elles savent qu'il porte des culottes en dentelle They know he wears lacy panties

The past participle of savoir is su:

Il a su qu'il s'est trompé He'd known that he'd made a mistake

Obviously, it is possible to use savoir together with devoir:

Une femmelette doit savoir agrafer son soutien-gorge A sissy must know how to fasten his bra
Une bonne doit savoir servir sa maîtresse A maid must know how to serve his mistress
Un secrétaire doit savoir satisfaire sa patronne A secretary must know how to satisfy (satisfaire, -faire) his boss

What must you know how to do? Use Je dois savoir to remind yourself of your mistress's expectations of you, from the chores you must complete for her to the uniform that you must wear while you work. Is conjuguer les verbes irréguliers (“conjugating irregular verbs”, conjuguer, -er) on your list? It should be!

Je dois savoir conjuguer les verbes irréguliers I must know how to conjugate irregular (irrégulier, -ière) verbs (un verbe)

qu'est-ce que tu connais ? - what do you know?

Don't think that savoir covers everything you might know, however. There's a second irregular verb, connaître, which also means “to know”, but is used differently. Whereas savoir can be followed by another verb or a clause, connaître must be followed by a direct object - that is, a person, a place or a thing. If you're speaking of knowing your bra size, connaître would be the right choice, as it would for telling your mistress that you know the shop where she wants you to buy a new one. You'd even use connaître to say that you know the friend of hers that works there, as embarrassing as that would be!

When speaking of information you know, or something you've memorised, you can use either savoir or connaître, but it's always safe to use the latter when there's no verb that follows. Let's see how connaître is conjugated:

Je connais la recette par cœur, Madame I know the recipe by heart, Ma'am
Tu connais mes amies, Fifi, et elles te connaissent également ! You know my friends, Fifi, and they know you too!
Il connaît sa taille de soutien-gorge et de culotte He knows his bra and panty size
Elle connaît une petite boutique qui vend de la lingerie chère She knows a little shop that sells expensive lingerie
Nous connaissons le chemin, nous allons souvent à cette boutique We know the way, we often go to that shop
Vous connaissez tous Fifi, mon mari et bonne You all know Fifi, my husband and maid
Ils connaissent leur place comme maris soumis They know their place as submissive husbands
Elles connaissent son mari de la fête They know her husband from the party

The past participle of connaître is connu:

J'ai connu une femme qui a maintenu son mari dans un corset presque en permanence I once knew a woman who kept (maintenir, -tenir, see lesson 29) her husband in a corset almost permanently

Of course, there are things you must know too, however discreetly:

Je dois connaître la taille de soutien-gorge de ma maîtresse aussi I must know my mistress's bra size as well

This same pattern applies to other verbs that end in -aître, should you ever need to speak of appearing (apparaître) or disappearing (disparaître), recognising (reconnaître) or even disregarding (méconnaître) - the latter something that your mistress is perfectly entitled to do when it comes to you and your efforts, no matter how hard you might work! You don't think you deserve her attention, do you?

exercices pour la vingt-sixième leçon - exercises for the twenty sixth lesson

Translate the following:

  1. Il doit lacer son corset très serré

  2. L'homme sait se raser les jambes comme une femme

  3. Tu dois savoir le sucer !

  4. Sa femme connaît le gaine-combinaison qu'il déteste le plus

  5. Il pleut et donc la bonne doit porter un imperméable

Say the following in French:

  1. The maid must clean the toilet

  2. I know how to wash my wife's blouses

  3. She knows the colour of the man's panties

  4. Men must know how to do the ironing

  5. The women must punish their lazy secretary

leçon 27: pourquoi dois-tu porter un soutien-gorge ? - why must you wear a bra?

It can be difficult to explain that you love to be a maid, especially to women who struggle to understand why anyone would ever want to do the cleaning, let alone don an exaggerated uniform to scrub toilets and floors. Yet there can be no denying your position when you're seen wearing a frilly apron and dress, an explanation surely required once your mistress's friends have stopped laughing. You already know how to use aimer and adorer to assert your passion for housework, as well as to announce your love of feminine clothing, but is that really the most shameful thing you could say? Wouldn't it be worse to hate every aspect of serving your mistress, yet have no choice because of the control she wields over you? Many sissies fantasise about finding themselves stuck in a such provocative predicament, and so it's only right you should know how to paint a picture of being helpless, even if just as make-believe.

obliger is a regular -er verb that means “to compel” or “to require”, and thus can be used in combination with an object pronoun to suggest that you're made to do the things that you secretly love:

Ma copine m'oblige à porter un soutien-gorge et une culotte My girlfriend makes me wear a bra and panties
Ma femme m'oblige à servir de bonne My wife makes me serve as a maid
Ma patronne m'oblige à m'habiller comme une secrétaire My boss makes me dress as a secretary

elle me contraint ! - she makes me!

contraindre has a similar meaning, but is an irregular -re verb. Like you learned with mettre, many irregular verbs fall into groups, with contraindre sharing the same conjugation as a number of other verbs that end in -aindre, -eindre or -oindre. Might you be afraid (craindre) or whine (geindre) about donning a corset that will restrict (restreindre) your movements as you paint (peindre) your nails? Your mistress might pity (plaindre) you when you complain (se plaindre), but she has many ways to compel you - not least another verb in the same group, with astreindre also meaning “to force” or “to compel”. Of course, it would be easier to use forcer (-er), but sometimes, a sissy has little choice, so in this lesson, you're going to use these less common and more difficult verbs - like it or not!

Let's use peindre as an example, and imagine a manicure party - one where we'll avoid using the reflexive, but place special emphasis on everyone's nails to make explaining the conjugation easier. No-one will be going home without hands that catch the eye, including the submissive husbands who are having to serve as subjects for their wives! With these verbs, the -dre is dropped, but the plural forms acquire an extra “g” before the final “n”, as follows:

Je peins mes ongles roses I paint my nails pink
Tu peins tes ongles lilas You paint your nails lilac (lilas)
Il peint ses ongles rose clair He paints his nails light pink
Elle peint ses ongles écarlates She paints her nails scarlet (écarlate)
Nous peignons nos ongles cramoisis We paint our nails crimson (cramoisi(e))
Vous peignez vos ongles rouges You paint your nails red
Ils peignent leurs ongles rose vif They paint their nails bright pink
Elles peignent leurs ongles rose foncé They paint their nails dark pink

The past participle of peindre is peint:

La femmelette a peint ses ongles de pieds aussi The sissy painted his toenails too

Even if you're allowed the privilege of wearing nail polish, as a maid, you must never forget your place, unless you want your mistress to remind you:

Il se plaint parce qu'elle le contraint à se peindre les ongles He complains because she makes him paint his nails
Il geint parce qu'il craint sa punition mais les menottes le restreignent He whines because he fears his punishment, but the handcuffs restrict him
Elle l'astreint à porter du rouge à lèvres, puis l'astreint à sucer pour s'excuser She makes him wear lipstick, then makes him suck to say sorry

Note that, like obliger, contraindre and astreindre require an à before the following infinitive. This is similar to how some verbs in English require an additional “to”, whereas others don't - for instance, “his wife orders him to wear a bra”, but “she makes him wear panties”. If you swap the “to” between those sentences, they'll both sound very strange! Be sure to pay attention to the presence or absence of French prepositions as well!

Returning to our original sentences:

Ma copine me contraint à porter un soutien-gorge et une culotte My girlfriend makes me wear a bra and panties
Ma femme me contraint à servir de bonne My wife makes me serve as a maid
Ma patronne me contraint à m'habiller comme une secrétaire My boss makes me dress as a secretary

Practise conjugating the following verbs until you know their pattern.

astreindre to compel, to force
contraindre to compel, to force
craindre to fear, to be afraid of
geindre to moan, to whine
peindre to paint
plaindre to pity, to feel sorry for
restreindre to limit, to restrict
se plaindre to complain

elle me fait porter un soutien-gorge encore une fois - she makes me wear a bra once again

As if your mistress didn't have enough ways to make you do what she wants, it's possible to use faire to mean “to make someone do something”. This is known as the causative construction, because it describes a situation where the subject causes something to happen, rather than performing it themselves. After all, when your mistress makes you clean the floor, it's not her who ends up having to get down with a bucket and brush - as befits the lady of the house, she gets to sit back and relax while you slave away on her behalf!

Let's put such a situation into words:

Elle fait laver le plancher par sa bonne She makes her maid wash the floor

Here, the mistress is still the subject of the sentence - she is still in charge! Both the floor and the maid can be considered objects, however, each subject to her whim in their own way. To distinguish between them, we can consider the floor to be the “receiver” (it is being cleaned), and the maid to be the “agent” (he is doing the cleaning). In the above sentence, all three are present, and if you try to translate it word by word, you'll discover the meaning to be more along the lines of “she makes the floor to wash by her maid”, something that becomes even more obvious when the agent is dropped:

Elle fait laver le plancher She has the floor washed

Does it matter who washes the floor, so long as your mistress doesn't need to lift a finger to see it sparkle? No matter how much time you might spend on your hands and knees, your work as a maid is barely worth a mention - unless you fail to make an effort, in which case, you'll surely be punished for it! Perhaps, however, your mistress wants to turn the spotlight on you, emphasising how you have to perform the most menial of chores for her. Exactly the same sentence structure may be used when there's an agent, but no receiver:

Elle fait s'agenouiller sa bonne She makes her maid kneel

Context usually makes it clear what is meant - maids can kneel, but floors can't wash themselves, which is why the former is necessary! Suppose your mistress doesn't care to mention the floor, however. You already know how to replace a noun with an object pronoun, turning plancher into a le that in this case needs to precede fait as well as laver:

Elle le fait laver par sa bonne She makes her maid wash it

Again, we can omit mention of the maid by dropping the last few words:

Elle le fait laver She has it washed

although that's an ambiguous sentence which could equally mean “she has him wash” - perhaps just as necessary if the maid in question has got himself dirty by grovelling around on the floor! Where a sentence has only a receiver or an agent, then either can be replaced by object pronouns of the sort we've seen so far. If a sentence has both, however, then matters become a little more complicated.

So far you've used “direct object pronouns”, so called because they replace direct objects - the people, places or things that receive the action of the verb. In the case of a causative construct with both a receiver and an agent, that only applies to the former, with the maid who scrubs the floor on his mistress's behalf requiring a different sort of pronoun to replace him - an “indirect object pronoun”, because he is considered to be an indirect object. Indirect objects are those that follow prepositions such as à (“to”), pour (“for”) or par (“by”), and can be found by asking questions that use those same prepositions, i.e. “to whom?”, “for whom?” or “by whom?”.

Elle lui fait laver le plancher She makes him wash the floor

Here, lui is an indirect object pronoun meaning “him”. It happens that direct and indirect pronouns are only different in the third persons singular and plural, such that you need only learn a couple of new words in order to use this second sort:

me or m' (before a vowel) me
te or t' (before a vowel) you (informal and singular)
lui him, her
nous us
vous you (formal or plural)
leur them (masculine and feminine)

Nevertheless, that's enough to distinguish between the two in our example:

Elle le lui fait laver She makes him wash it

Rather than getting too caught up in scrubbing floors, however, let's return once again to where we started this lesson, and consider how you might confess to being compelled to submit to your superior's wishes, this time using faire:

Ma copine me fait porter un soutien-gorge et une culotte My girlfriend makes me wear a bra and panties
Ma femme me fait servir de bonne My wife makes me serve as a maid
Ma patronne me fait m'habiller comme une secrétaire My boss makes me dress as a secretary

If the preceding grammar is too much for the moment, simply memorise me fait as something that comes after your mistress but before what she makes you do, remembering to use the “to” form of whatever verb that follows. You'll surely amuse any woman who happens to hear you make such humiliating admissions, but perhaps you're not the only man to find himself trapped in such a provocative predicament:

Sa femme lui fait porter un soutien-gorge au travail His wife makes him wear a bra at work
Leur femme leur font porter des soutiens-gorge au travail Their wives make them wear bras at work

Use obliger, contraindre and faire to describe these brassièred businessmen in other ways. It's unlikely that struggling to hide straps under their shirts is all they have to do, considering how their wives surely take charge, providing plenty of room for practice!

exercices pour la vingt-septième leçon - exercises for the twenty seventh lesson

Translate the following:

  1. Elle fait faire du café à son secrétaire

  2. Sa femme l'oblige à faire tout le ménage en tablier à froufrous

  3. Elle ne plaint pas sa bonne quand il se plaint, elle le punit

  4. Les bonnes geignent parce que leurs maîtresses leur font montrer leur culotte

  5. Ma femme m'a fait porter des bas et un porte-jarretelles tout l'hiver

Say the following in French:

  1. My mistress makes (faire) me wash and iron her blouses

  2. She was making (obliger) him wear pink panties

  3. We make (astreindre) our husbands do the dishes

  4. His boss made (contraindre) him kneel while she scolded him

  5. I must not complain when you make (faire) me hang out the washing

leçon 28: il lui demande de lui faire porter un soutien-gorge - he asks her to make him wear a bra

In the previous lesson, you learned how the causative construct requires the use of indirect object pronouns if you want to say something like “she makes him wash the floor”, “him” needing to be lui rather than le if it's the floor, rather than the maid, that's being washed. Such pleasing statements of a servant's submission aren't the only place where these pronouns are to be found, however, with some verbs requiring their use even in the absence of a direct object. Consider, for instance, the lady of the house chatting:

Ma maîtresse parle à ses amies My mistress is talking (parler, -er) to her friends

If the women in question have already been introduced, then you might say:

Ma maîtresse leur parle My mistress is talking to them

By now, you ought to be very familiar with obéir (“to obey”), a verb that we've already seen must be followed by an à, as in a female-led office:

Le secrétaire obéit à sa patronne The secretary obeys his boss

Because of the à, an indirect object pronoun must be used if you do not want to speak explicitly of the man's superior when declaring his obedience:

Le secrétaire lui obéit The secretary obeys her

There are also verbs that can have both a direct and indirect object. Suppose a woman is in a generous mood, and wishes to reward her maid for his work:

Elle achète un nouveau corset pour sa bonne She buys a new corset for her maid

In this situation, it is the corset that is being bought, not the maid, making the latter an indirect object. The servant who'll soon find himself splendidly cinched should thus be replaced with lui rather than le, just as he might were he being made to wear the foundation garment in question:

Elle lui achète un nouveau corset She buys him a new corset

Perhaps, however, the lady of the house is less pleased with her domestic's efforts. She might still want to give (donner) him something, something that'll he'll remember for the rest of the day, but not something he'll enjoy:

Elle donne une fessée à sa bonne She gives her maid a spanking

Using an indirect pronoun, we can shorten this sentence. If only the misbehaving maid's time over his mistress's knee might be reduced accordingly, but then he wouldn't learn from his mistakes, would he?

Elle lui donne une fessée She gives him a spanking

Other verbs that use indirect object pronouns in this way include:

demander (-er) to ask
désobéir (-ir) to disobey
dire (-dire, see below) to say, to tell
interdire (-dire, see below) to forbid
pardonner (-er) to forgive
permettre (-mettre) to permit
reprocher (-er) to criticise
sourire (-rire, see below) to smile

In the absence of a pronoun, all would ordinarily be followed by an à. For each of the following examples, replace the indirect object pronoun with a suitable noun, remembering to rearrange the order of the words as well.

Elle lui demande de peler les légumes She asks him to peel the vegetables
Il lui a désobéi et donc elle l'a puni He disobeyed her and so she punished him
Sa femme lui dit de baisser son pantalon His wife tells him to drop his trousers
Sa patronne lui interdit d'enlever ses talons hauts pendant qu'il travaille His boss forbids him from taking off his high heels while he works
Les femmes lui pardonnent après qu'il s'est excusé The women forgive him after he apologised
Elle lui permet de desserrer un peu son corset She permits him to loosen (desserrer, -er) his corset a little
Sa maîtresse lui reproche son mauvais nettoyage His mistress criticises him for his poor cleaning
La serveuse lui sourit quand il paye le repas de sa femme The waitress smiles at him when he pays for his wife's meal

In negative sentences, both direct and indirect object pronouns come between the ne and the first part of the verb, as in the following examples:

Il ne lui désobéit pas He doesn't disobey her
Il ne lui a pas désobéi He didn't disobey her
Elle ne le punit pas She doesn't punish him
Elle ne l'a punit pas She didn't punish him

elle lui dit de sourire pour la caméra - she tells him to smile for the camera

What do being told (dire) to do something and being forbidden (interdire) to do something have in common? Aside from your need to obey, the answer is very straightforward - both are irregular verbs that follow the same pattern, along with the likes of redire (“to say again”), contredire (“to contradict”) and se dédire (“to go back on one's word”) - not that a maid should ever do either of those last two! In fact, once you know how to conjugate any member of this group, you can do so with a whole host of verbs not only ending in -dire, but -fire, -lire or -uire as well. Let's see how that works with dire, which can be used for both “to say” and “to tell”:

Je dis à mon mari de porter un soutien-gorge assorti I tell my husband to wear a matching bra
Tu dis que tu es ma bonne You say that you are my maid
Il dit qu'il a fini ses corvées He says that he has finished his chores
Elle dit non à son secrétaire She tells her secretary no
Nous disons tes tailles à la vendeuse We tell the saleswoman your sizes
Ils disent qu'ils sont aussi des maris soumis They say that they are also submissive husbands
Elles disent à l'homme de leur montrer sa culotte They tell the man to show them his panties

By now, you should have no trouble understanding the rule - the final -re is dropped, with -s, -t, -sons or -sent being added, depending on the subject. But what if you want to speak about what your mistress says, or indeed, what she tells you to do? It's no accident that we've omitted the vous form of dire, because dire, along with its derivative redire is even more irregular. For interdire, contredire and all other members of this group, one would add -isez, but for dire and redire, -tes is required:

Vous me dites de porter un soutien-gorge You tell me to wear a bra
Vous m'interdisez de porter un soutien-gorge You forbid me to wear a bra

Which would you prefer? Might you think differently if you had to go about your duties burdened by an impractically large bust? Regardless of your mistress's preference, it's more likely that you'll speak of it in the past tense, with the past participle merely requiring the -re of the verb to be replaced by -t:

Vous m'avez dit de porter un soutien-gorge, Madame You told me to wear a bra, Ma'am
Vous m'avez interdit de porter un soutien-gorge, Madame You forbade me to wear a bra, Ma'am

Whether you're allowed the assistance of a bra or not, you're sure to make anyone seeing you smile (sourire) or even laugh (rire) should you have to serve your mistress wearing a pair of ponderous silicone breasts. These two verbs form a group all of their own, leaving you no choice but to learn their conjunctions, just as you would have to endure the endless wobble that no amount of fabric can completely suppress. How humiliated you would feel should your chest be the cause of hilarity among your mistress's friends - perhaps it would be better to be flat, even if she makes you wear a bra nonetheless?

Je souris et puis je ris aux seins rebondissants de la bonne I smile and then I laugh at the maid's bouncing breasts
Tu souris et puis tu ris aux seins rebondissants de la bonne You smile and then you laugh at the maid's bouncing breasts
Elle sourit et puis elle rit aux seins rebondissants de la bonne She smiles and then she laughs at the maid's bouncing breasts
Nous sourions et puis nous rions aux seins rebondissants de la bonne We smile and then we laugh at the maid's bouncing breasts
Vous souriez et puis vous riez aux seins rebondissants de la bonne You smile and then you laugh at the maid's bouncing breasts
Ils sourient et puis ils rient aux seins rebondissants de la bonne They smile and then they laugh at the maid's bouncing breasts
Elles sourient et puis elles rient aux seins rebondissants de la bonne They smile and then they laugh at the maid's bouncing breasts

Do your breasts bounce (rebondir, -ir) because you need a better bra? Does everyone smile and then laugh at how wildly they wobble as you walk? There are worse things than wearing a sturdy bra, n'est-ce pas ?

une bonne plaît à sa maîtresse - a maid is pleasing to his mistress

As a maid, you know that you must always please your mistress. To speak of that in French, you might use faire plaisir (literally “to do pleasure”), or else satisfaire (“to satisfy”), which also conjugates like faire. Of course, there are occasions where you should ask permission first, a polite s'il vous plaît, Madame the least you should say before turning your tongue to more intimate matters. Don't be fooled by how plaît seems to mean “please”, however, because the verb it derives from, plaire, has a slightly different meaning, as does its opposite, déplaire. Rather than “to please”, it's best to think of plaire as “to be pleasing”, with déplaire being “to be displeasing”. Both are irregular, but in a different way to faire:

Mon uniforme plaît à ma maîtresse My uniform is pleasing to my mistress
My mistress likes my uniform
La paresse du secrétaire déplaît à sa patronne The secretary's laziness is displeasing to his boss
The secretary's boss dislikes his laziness

With an indirect object pronoun, you can say that you like something without putting undue stress on yourself, a manner of speech that your mistress may decide is amusing for you adopt, or simply use herself to humble you:

Vos nouveaux bas me plaisent, Madame I like your new stockings, Ma'am
Ta gaine de punition te plaît, Fifi ? Do you like your punishment girdle, Fifi?

Because the form of plaire should agree with the subject of the sentence, which is the object being liked, you'll mostly use plaît and plaisent. Saying that you like someone (rather than something) in this way would suggest an attraction unbecoming of a maid, so reserve this form of words for lingerie, dresses and aprons! The past participle of plaire is plu, and that of déplaire is déplu, with the imperfect stems being plais- and déplais- respectively. Let's consider some less appreciative maids:

Son corset serré lui déplaisait He didn't like his tight corset
Cette fessée me a déplu, Madame ! I didn't like that spanking, Ma'am!

exercices pour la vingt-huitième leçon - exercises for the twenty eighth lesson

Translate the following:

  1. Leurs femmes leur interdisent de regarder d'autres femmes

  2. Sa maîtresse ne lui a pas permis de se déshabiller

  3. Il lui a acheté des bijoux chers. Les bijoux chers lui plaisent

  4. Elle lui parlait pendant qu'il travaillait

  5. Sa patronne lui a demandé d'acheter de nouveaux bas

Say the following in French:

  1. They never forgave him

  2. His wife punishes him because he made a mistake

  3. The businesswoman laughs at him, because she knows he is wearing a bra

  4. The women do not permit them to speak. They forbid them to speak!

  5. She gave him her panties and told him to wear them. His shame pleased her