Merci de or Merci Pour?
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You know how to say ‘thank you’ in French, no difficulties!
However ‘thank you for…’ has two possible translations: merci pour… or merci de…, how to use them?
1- ‘Thank you for…’ is followed with a noun or a pronoun: both expressions are correct:
Thank you for your help: merci pour votre aide or merci de votre aide.
Thank you for what you have done: merci pour ce que vous avez fait or merci de ce que vous avez fait.
Exception: with short sentences at the end of a letter for example:
Merci de votre compréhension: thank you for your understanding
Merci de votre attention: thank you for your attention etc… but we could also say: merci pour votre compréhension!
2- ‘Thank you for…’ is followed with a verb: merci de… is the correct translation.
However, we make a difference between past and future events:
Thank you for replying (for past actions): merci d’avoir répondu.
We need the verb to have for the past actions, we say ‘thank you for having replied’. And of course the verb “to be” for the French verbs that need it at Passé Composé: merci d’être venu.
Merci de répondre is for future events and can be use like an order to mean ‘do you want to reply, please?’
Again, “merci de venir” means ‘thank you in advance for coming’.
For present actions we will use the past form or a form with a noun:
Merci de ton aide (merci pour ton aide) or merci de m’avoir aidé.
3 – Merci à
Pay attention to “Merci à toi”, it seems the translation word for word of ‘thanks to you’ but the meaning has nothing to do, “merci à toi” means ‘I thank you’ (we could also say “je te remercie” with the verb “remercier”). So I thank him is merci à lui, I thank them, merci à eux etc…
You want to know more how to say thank you in French: More ways to say Thank you