The name of the famous 6th arrondissement café Deux Magots causes many native English speakers a moment of distress because of the <<faux amis>> nature of the word Magots. My earliest encounters with the name caused me to wonder why this lovely, historical, literary and iconic café had such an “ugly” name. I put the unpleasant name association behind me decades ago. My sister reminded me of my former name distress recently. She has a nice familiarity with French and the two of us routinely play around with Franglish – talking about having our horses* cut or colored and such. When she read my Let’s meet for Coffee post, she asked me about the unfortunate name.
Here are the two “Magots” referred to in the name of the café. You can look up the additional information about who, why, when and where for yourself. I’ve only taken myself to Deux Magots a couple of times and I confess that up until now I haven’t located the actual figurines (they are obviously inside and we visitors like to sit outside, <<n’est pas?>>). However I recently invited a friend to meet me for coffee at Deux Magots and this time I will definitely locate and perhaps even take my own photo of the figurines.
Deux Magots and Café de Flore are truly right next to each other and just across the street from Brasserie Lipp. The two cafés vie for “most popular” which has ebbed and flowed over the decades. I suggest you try both once you’ve gotten there — by bus of course!
*cheval = horse; cheveux = hair. Get it?