Connaitre v savoir ... knowledge of 'facts'.

Answered! Jump to accepted answer.


Kwiziq community member

23 July 2018

2 replies

Connaitre v savoir ... knowledge of 'facts'.

The two sentences below look almost exactly the same, in both 'they' know a fact (what time the shop closes).

Presumably, then, its just that in the 2nd sentence the verb is followed by a noun and that alone determins that 'conaitre' should be used, (and it's nothing to do with 'they' knowing a fact)?

Ils savent à quelle heure le magasin ferme. They know what time the shop closes.

Ils connaissent l'horaire de fermeture du magasin.
They know the shop closing time.

This question relates to:
French lesson "Connaître vs savoir = to know something vs to know how to do"


Kwiziq language super star

25 July 2018


Hi Stewart,

Normally the difference between 'Savoir' and 'Connaître' is simplified in the following way:

Savoir = to know facts

Connaître to know people and places

But as the lesson points out it is a bit more complicated than this.

Ils savent que le magasin ferme à vingt heures = They know (that) the shop closes at eight p.m.

Ils connaissent l'heure de fermeture du magasin = They know the shop closing time 

Indeed the difference here although similar in meaning is, 

Savoirque (or ce que, ce qui ...) is followed by another sentence. (You cannot say,  je connais que ...)

e.g. Je sais ce qu'il va me dire = I know what he is going to tell me

Nous savons ce qu'ils préfèrent = We know what they like best

Connaître  is followed by an article or a noun 

e.g. Il connaît bien Marie/Paris He knows Marie/Paris well

Vous connaîssez les Champs Elysées ? = Do you know the Champs Elysées?

Hope this helps!


Kwiziq community member

25 July 2018


Thank you Cécile ... yes I'm 'with it' now.

Your answer

Login to submit your answer

Don't have an account yet? Join today

Think you've got all the answers?

Test your French to the CEFR standard

find your French level »