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Adjectifs en -IC ou -ICAL, avec exemples mnémotechniques

6 ADJECTIFS AVEC LES 2 POSSIBILITES: -IC ET -ICAL, qui ont des significations différentes

Comic/al – economic/al – fantastic/al – historic/al – lyric/al – politic/al

1a    a comic actor, novel, opera

1b    it’s comical! (= funny) (c’est comique !, aussi dans un sens ironique)

2a    economic reforms or an economic migrant (= des réformes économiques ou un migrant économique) – it is not economic! (= ce n’est pas rentable !)

2b    an economical method or car (= économique, qui coûte ou consomme peu) – an economical person (= économe)

3a    a fantastic opportunity

3b    a fantastical story or legend (= unbelievable) (= invraisemblable)

4a    an historic victory, decision or agreement (= capital, which changed history)

4b    an historical monument, event, film, play or figure (= which refers to history, of or about history, of or about people or events from history)

5a    lyric poetry

5b    the end of the text is very lyrical (= poetical)

6a    to be politic (= wise or prudent) (= judicieux) – it would not be very politic to do that!

6b    a political crisis, issue or party (= related to politics)

12 ADJECTIFS AVEC LES 2 POSSIBILITES: -IC ET -ICAL, qui ont des significations identiques, mais un usage parfois différent (classic/al, egoistic/al, electric/al, magic/al, mystic/al et tragic/al)

Academic/al – arithmetic/al – classic/al – democratic/al – egoistic/al – electric/al – magic/al – mystic/al – philanthropic/al – poetic/al – strategic/al – tragic/al

1.    an academic or academical standard

2.    an arithmetic or arithmetical rule

3.    a classic style (of clothing), a classic car or work (= serving as a standard or model of its kind, of the highest class), but: classical music, a classical scholar (= humaniste), classical education (= études de lettres classiques), in classical times (= dans l’antiquité), the classical civilization, age or period (= related to Mediterranean Sea history, comprising ancient Greece and ancient Rome history), classical art (= refers to European cultural, artistic and aestetic movement between 17th and 18th century)

4.    a democratic or democratical election or government

5.    an egoistic or egoistical behaviour, but: you are very egoistic!

6.    an electric motor or guitar, but: an electrical equipment, engineering or electrical components

7.    a magic wand (= baguette magique), but: his performance was magical! (magical est souvent utilisé seul)

8.    a mystic or mystical experience, but: a mystic dance or union (sometimes, mystical can also replace “occult”)

9.    a philanthropic or philanthropical mission

10.  a poetic or poetical language, topic or work

11.  a strategic or strategical decision

12.  a tragic event or play, but: it’s tragical! (tragical est souvent utilisé seul)


Aesthetic – artistic – authentic – catholic – energetic – enthusiastic – majestic – public – realistic- specific – systematic

1.    an aesthetic approach

2.    artistic freedom

3.    authentic Italian food

4.    a catholic view (= large, éclectique) – a person of catholic tastes (= goûts éclectiques)

5.    an energetic effort or leadership (but: energetically)

6.    an enthusiastic person, welcome or response

7.    a majestic work (but: majestically)

8.    a public speech

9.    a realistic person, goal or painting

10.  a specific goal

11.  a systematic person or way (but: systematically)


Chemical – critical – cynical – fanatical – grammatical – identical – logical – practical – physical – radical – sceptical – surgical – technical – theoretical – topical – tropical – typical – vertical

1.    chemical warfare (guerre)

2.    a critical decision or moment (a critic = noun!)

3.    a cynical person or attitude

4.    a fanatical supporter

5.    a grammatical rule

6.    identical views

7.    a logical argument

8.    a practical experience

9.    a physical problem

10.  a radical change

11.  I’m sceptical about this matter (a sceptic = noun!)

12.  a surgical operation (= chirurgical)

13.  technical knowledge

14.  a theoretical approach

15.  a topical issue (= d’actualité)

16.  a tropical climate

17.  a typical case

18.  a vertical line or cliff

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