grand vs gros

IsaacC1Kwiziq community member

grand vs gros

Can you say that hamburger was “grand” instead of “gros ? What is the difference between these 2 adjectives?

Asked 4 weeks ago
CécileKwiziq team memberCorrect answer

Bonjour Isaac,

1. When talking about physical things, it being a hamburger in this case, but it could be an object, a person or an animal the words 'grand' and 'gros' mean different things.

I would say that although in English the word 'big' can encompass all sorts of meanings we could say that in French: 

grand = tall, large

gros = fat, large

Think of the difference in how to say a large/big glass in Fench -

un grand verre

referring to its height or the quantity it represents as in 'boire un grand verre d'eau)

un gros verre

referring to its bulk maybe a whisky glass.

C'est une grande maison = It's a big house 

Ce tableau est trop grand pour ma pièce = This painting is too big for my room

Je voudrais manger un gros bifteck à midi = I'd like to eat a large sized steak for lunch

J'ai mis un gros pull parce qu'il faisait très froid I put on a thick sweater because it was cold

Je cherche une grosse voiture = I am looking for a big car

2. When discussing abstract things like a storm or a problem things get more complicated and sometimes their use is arbitrary.

J'ai un gros problème avec mon ordinateur = I have a big  problem with my computer  ( sizeable)

C'est une grosse erreur de ne pas réviser avant un examen = It's a big  problem not to revise before an exam (major)

J'ai un grand respect pour tes parents = I have a great deal of respect for your parents

Nous avons passé un grand moment ensemble = We had a great time together ( memorable)

There will be many exceptions, but we can say that grand and gros both mean "big" or "large," but they have different connotations and usage.

Grand is used more to describe physical size, and quantity while gros is used to describe bulkiness and intensity.

I hope this helps!

JimC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

Bonjour Isaac,

Gros  Tends to relate to volume.

Grand  Tends to relate to dimension.

In the case of the hamburger, it seems to me that the description depends on how the item is perceived.

Is it very large?  or is it very ample/bulky?

The two adjectives are synonymous.

Hope this helps.

Bonne journée


grand vs gros

Can you say that hamburger was “grand” instead of “gros ? What is the difference between these 2 adjectives?

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