Has the French language begun its much prophesied decline as a community tongue on the North American continent? That is the question being asked by some excitable commentators following the release of statistics from Canada’s 2016 census indicating a small but noticeable decrease in the country’s Francophone population. Overall, the number of people speaking French at home has fallen since 2011, dropping from 22% to 21.3%. In the majority Francophone province of Québec that figure has moved from 79.7% to 78.4%. While the English language experienced a reduction of its own across the nation, thanks to growing numbers of allophone immigrants, Québec bucked the trend with a rise in English. This was found not just in traditionally bilingual places like the cosmopolitan city of Montréal but also in smaller municipalities, including the provincial capital. Though this still leaves over 90% of the region’s residents with some degree of French fluency, taken with other evidence it has been argued that the 2016 figures may point to an emerging language shift, whether temporary or otherwise. One which can find its parallel in the 2016 census results from Ireland and Wales, where the already poor numbers of Irish- and Welsh-speakers showed marked declines.