French Words With No English Translation

February 27, 2011 at 10:00 am 3 comments

Dépaysement: The sensation of being in another country.

La douleur exquise: The heart-wrenching pain of wanting someone you can’t have. Even a Sex in the City episode was named after it!

Chômer: To be unemployed, but because it’s a verb, it makes the state active.

Profiter: To make the most of or take advantage of.

Flâneur: As defined in the book Elegant Wits and Grand Horizontals, it’s “the deliberately aimless pedestrian, unencumbered by any obligation or sense of urgency, who, being French and therefore frugal, wastes nothing, including his time which he spends with the leisurely discrimination of a gourmet, savoring the multiple flavors of his city.”

Esprit d’escalier: The literal translation is staircase wit, but it means to think of a comeback when it’s too late.

Retrouvailles: The happiness of meeting again after a long time.

Sortable: An adjective for someone you can take anywhere without being embarrassed.

Voila/voici: It’s so necessary that we use it all the time. “Voila” literally means “there it is” and “voici means “here it is.”

Empêchement: An unexpected last-minute change of plans. A great excuse without having to be specific.

 

Had these on my tumblr, but still wanted to share.

Entry filed under: interesting things. Tags: , , .

Food for thought Perfect Messy Blowout Tutorial

3 Comments Add your own

  • […] French Words With No English Translation (didi’s World) […]

    Reply
  • 2. vespertinecuckquean  |  June 18, 2012 at 10:34 pm

    Is it true that cassolette describes all the scents of a woman mixed into her unique smell? If so it’s the best word without a translation!

    Reply
  • 3. Beautiful French Words « Misadventures in Paris  |  July 15, 2013 at 8:58 pm

    […] (Source) […]

    Reply

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