She set up Jodie Taylor's winner on the hour after surging down the middle of the park and perfectly feeding Taylor, who slotted coolly past the French keeper Sarah Bouhaddi for her fifth goal of the tournament.
Bronze put in a performance that deserved a second player-of-the-match of the championships.
The game was shown live on Channel 4 and commentator Clare Balding described her as 'phenonenal all match long'.
It was an all-action first-half showing from right-back Lucy. She was up and down the pitch, making last-ditch tackles in her own box, making surging runs at the other end and taking the throw-ins on the right.
She made her intentions clear as early as the 6th minute when her charge into the French box, resulted in Jodie Taylor ballooning a shot high and wide.
The Manchester City player showed her quality in the 21st minute, linking up with Jordan Nobbs, rolling her defender and almost finding Taylor.
She made another class run shortly after, skipping past two players and honestly staying on her feet under pressure.
In defence, she made a crucial tackle on 25 minutes on the edge of the penalty area.
England's best chances seem to be coming down their right where Lucy Bronze and Jordan Nobbs are flying down the wing but are up against the speedy left-back Sakina Karchaoui.
The Lionesses grew in stature in the second half, resulting in the Taylor's decisive goal. But Bronze was almost caught out on 55 minutes when Eugenie le Sommer climbed above her, with her header flashing just past the post.
France started chasing the game, putting England's defence under considerable pressure.
England's keeper Karen Bardsley was injured and replaced by Liverpool's Siobhan Chamberlain in the 73rd minute.
But they held firm and now face hosts The Netherlands in the semi-finals.