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Thread poster: Jean-Luc Dumont

Jean-Luc Dumont  Identity Verified
Local time: 15:15
English to French
+ ...
May 21, 2003


On a lighter note, a bank sur un site intéressant. Pas de commentaires sur la relation des Français avec l\'argent... Certains se soignent très bien. D\'ailleurs j\'accepte toutes formes de paiements .



The French have a peculiar relationship to money. Although they need it just like everyone else on earth, there is often the idea that when someone is really rich, it could be for dodgy reasons. In the country of intellectuals and philosophers, money does have a bit of a dubious reputation.


Too expensive

Broke, rich, stingy


Le fric, le pèze, le pognon, l\'oseille

Dough, dosh, etc.

Un balle

A franc

T\'as pas dix balles?

Do you have ten francs? (meaning \'can you lend them to me?\')

Une thune: Originally, a five-franc coin (more or less 50p).

Ça ne vaut pas une thune: That\'s not worth a single penny.

Nowadays, the word has lost its original meaning and has become another slang word for money in general.

Cette bagnole, elle vaut de la thune.

This car is worth a lot of money.

Une brique: Lit. a brick. It also used to be the equivalent of un million anciens Francs. But in 1960, the French adopted le nouveau Franc.

1 nouveau Franc = 100 anciens Francs.

Therefore 1 million old francs was worth 10 000 new Francs. But the expression remained, so now une brique = 10 000 Francs.

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Too expensive

C\'est super reuch. Reuch is verlan for cher. Che/r became r/chè. The final è was taken out, leaving us with r/ch, pronounced reuch.

Ça douille. It\'s expensive. Expression understood by all, despite its uncertain origins.

C\'est le coup de bambou. Literally: It\'s a bamboo stroke. It means something is painfully expensive. The notion of pain is recurrent when talking about something expensive. For instance, after a nice meal at the restaurant, customers know they are going to have to face la douloureuse, the painful one, i.e. the bill.

Ça coûte bonbon. It\'s dear. Never mind the origins of this expression, it\'s a bit old-fashioned now, anyway.

Ça coûte les yeux de la tête. Literally: It costs the eyes in your head. In French, an arm and a leg are worth two eyes... but not only that! This expression has another variation:

Ça coûte la peau des fesses

It costs the skin of your bottom. Now, there\'s something precious...!

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Broke, rich, stingy

Je suis fauché (comme les blés) I\'m broke.

Faucher means to mow. Once you mow the wheat, les blés, there is not much left in the field.

J\'ai une galère de thune

Une galère, a galley, is a word often used for un problème. So this expression could mean something like \'I\'m currently experiencing severe difficulties due to an obvious lack of cash\'.

Warning! Whenever someone uses this expression, the next minute they are very likely to ask if you could lend them something.

Je suis plein aux as

Officially translated as \'I\'ve got bags of lolly\'. But anyway you don\'t have to worry about the origins of the expression when you\'ve got plenty of money.

Un radin, un rapiat, un pingre

Une radine, une rapiat, une pingre

A stingy man, a stingy woman.




Interjections in Annoying situations - bien pratique

AĂŻe! Ouch! Pronounced like \"eye\".

OuĂŻe! Ouille! Ouch! Pronounced \"oo-y\". Just because you\'ve hurt yourself, it doesn\'t mean you shouldn\'t vary your expressions.

HolĂ ! Hey! Whoa! As in \"Whoa! Hold your horses, be careful, etc.\"

Ouf! Phew! Sometimes you escape annoying situations, just about.

Voir explication et traduction de \"j\'ai les boules!\" dans la section \"upset\" . Désolé...rien de scatologique

[Edited at 2003-05-21 18:42]

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