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few
comp fewer
superl fewest
British English: /fjuː/
American English: /fju/
When few is used as a quantifier to indicate the smallness or insufficiency of a given number or quantity ( few houses, few shops, few people) it is translated by peu de: peu de maisons, peu de magasins, peu de gens. Equally the few is translated by le peu de: the few people who knew her le peu de gens qui la connaissaient. For examples and particular usages see few 1 1 in the entry.When few is used as a quantifier in certain expressions to mean several, translations vary according to the expression: see few 1 2 in the entry.When a few is used as a quantifier ( a few books), it can often be translated by quelques: quelques livres; however, for expressions such as quite a few books, a good few books, see few 2 in the entry.For translations of few used as a pronoun ( few of us succeeded, I only need a few) see few 2 and , → few 3 in the entry.For translations of the few used as a noun ( the few who voted for him) see few 4 in the entry.

Translation of few in French:

quantifier

  • 1 (not many)
    peu de
    few visitors/letters
    peu de visiteurs/lettres
    few people came to the meeting
    peu de gens sont venus à la réunion
    very few houses/families
    très peu de maisons/familles
    there are very few opportunities for graduates
    il y a très peu de débouchés pour les diplômés
    one of my few pleasures
    un de mes rares plaisirs
    on the few occasions that she has visited this country
    les rares fois où elle a visité ce pays
    their needs are few
    ils ont peu de besoins
    their demands are few
    ils sont peu exigeants, ils revendiquent peu de chose
    to be few in number
    être peu nombreux
    there are too few women in this profession
    il y a trop peu de femmes dans ce métier
    with few exceptions a man of few words
    (gen)
    un homme peu loquace
    (approvingly)
    un homme qui ne se perd pas en paroles inutiles
  • 2 (some, several) every few days
    tous les deux ou trois jours
    over the next few days/weeks
    (in past)
    dans les jours/semaines qui ont suivi
    (in future)
    dans les jours/semaines à venir
    these past few days the first few weeks
    les premières semaines
    the few books she possessed
    les quelques livres qu'elle possédait

also: a few quantifier

  • quelques
    a few people/houses
    quelques personnes/maisons
    I would like a few more
    j'en voudrais quelques-uns ( or quelques-unes) de plus
    quite a few people/houses
    pas mal (informal) de gens/maisons, un bon nombre de gens/maisons
    we've lived here for a good few years
    nous vivons ici depuis un bon nombre d'années
    a few weeks earlier
    quelques semaines plus tôt
    in a few minutes
    dans quelques minutes
    in a few more months
    dans quelques mois
    a few more times
    quelques fois de plus

pronoun

  • 1 (not many) few of us succeeded
    peu d'entre nous ont réussi
    few of them could swim
    ils n'étaient pas nombreux à savoir nager
    few of them survived
    peu d'entre eux ont survécu, il y a eu peu de survivants
    there are so few of them that …
    (objects)
    il y en a tellement peu que …
    (people)
    ils sont tellement peu nombreux que …
    there are four too few
    il en manque quatre
    as few as four people turned up
    quatre personnes seulement sont venues
    few can deny that …
    il y a peu de gens qui nieraient que …
  • 2 (some) a few of the soldiers/countries
    quelques-uns or certains des soldats/pays
    I only need a few
    il ne m'en faut que quelques-uns/quelques-unes
    a few of us
    un certain nombre d'entre nous
    there were only a few of them
    (objects)
    il n'y en avait que quelques-uns/quelques-unes
    quite a few of the tourists come from Germany
    un bon nombre des touristes viennent d'Allemagne
    a good few of the houses were damaged
    un bon nombre des maisons ont été endommagées
    there are only a very few left
    (objects)
    il n'en reste que très peu
    (people)
    il ne reste que quelques personnes
    a few wanted to go on strike
    quelques-uns voulaient faire la grève

noun

  • the few who voted for him
    les rares personnes qui ont voté pour lui
    great wealth in the hands of the few
    une grande richesse entre les mains d'une minorité
    music that appeals only to the few
    une musique qui ne s'adresse qu'à l'élite

Idioms

to be few and far between

être rarissimes

such people/opportunities are few and far between

de telles personnes/occasions sont rarissimes

villages in this area are few and far between

il y a très peu de villages dans cette région

[informal]
to have had a few (too many)

avoir bu quelques verres de trop, être bien parti

Definition of few in:

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