French/Appendices/Slang

From Wikibooks, open books for an open world
Jump to: navigation, search

Notes on how to use slang[edit]

Foreign speakers[edit]

It is important to note that, as a foreigner, your use of slang will often be received as cute or funny, depending greatly upon your overall fluency in spoken French. To understand this, think about how it would sound to you if a foreigner—with a strong accent and odd rhythm of speech—came up to you and said "Dude, what a sketchy-ass hater that bizz-natch was, I totally was just like 'fuck off fo-sheezy'". Therefore, no matter how much slang you use in your native language, limiting your use of slang in French (proportionally to your level of fluency) will also limit how much you are patronised and giggled at by native listeners.

Slang: consistency & style[edit]

To use slang efficiently, it is important to maintain a consistency of style. Mixing styles might sound like saying: "Thy face, it is quite finely rawkin'".

  • Avoid vous unless a plural is necessary.
  • Avoid subject-verb inversion in questions. Use rather question formations where there is no inversion or 'est-ce que', only the raised tone at the end of the sentence. When doing this with interrogatives (qui, quand, comment, etc.), place them at the end of the sentence; i.e. "On va bouffer quand ?"

Translating 'fuck'[edit]

The English-language term 'fuck' is exceptional as it can serve as noun, verb, adjective, exclamation, and others. There is no such equivalent usage of any word in the French language, apart from 'putain', wich can be used as adjective and exclamation, "That's a fucking good car" = "C'est une putain de bonne voiture". Therefore the translation of 'fuck' into French depends on the corresponding part of speech.

Examples[edit]

noun 
"He's a great fuck" = "C'est un bon coup"
"He is such a fuck(er)" = "C'est un pauvre type/enfoiré/enculé/connard/salaud" (insert any insult)
"He's such a fuck-up" = "C'est un pauvre con/un raté/un loser"
verb 
sexual: baiser, niquer, coucher avec ; insulting: foutre, enculer
"I fucked up on my French test" = "J'ai foiré/raté mon examen de français"
"I fucked (up) my car" = "J'ai niqué ma bagnole"
"He fucked me over" = "Il m'a planté"
"I fucked your mother/mum/mam/mom" = "J'ai baisé/niqué ta mère"
"Fuck off" = "Va chier!", "Fous le camp", "Dégage !" (see the verb 'Foutre')
"Fuck you"/"Go fuck yourself" = "Va te faire foutre/enculer" "VA niquer ta mère"
adjective 
"This is fucking awful" = "Putain, ça craint"/"C'est bordelique"/"C'est de la merde"
"I am so fucked-up" = "Je suis barré/perché" (mental state); "Je suis totalement bourré(e)" (drunk); "Je suis défoncé(e)" (high[marijuana])
"I don't give a fuck." = "Je m'en fous"
adverb 
"I am trying to fucking work here" = "J'essaie de bosser putain"
exclamation 
"Fuck!" = "Merde !" ; "Putain !" ; "Bordel !"
n.b.: these can also be compounded in French, i.e., "Putain de merde !" "Putain de bordel de merde" (for stringing these together, see the scene in the film Matrix Reloaded with the Frenchman (Merovingian) in the restaurant)

Glossary[edit]

Notes on Pronunciation:
*To feel how R should be pronounced, gargle with water, then try gargling without water.
That is what your throat should be doing when pronouncing the R.
*The U is hardest for English speakers. The back of the throat should be stretched out as if you see
a mouse and are saying "eee!", but the lips should be in a tight circle as if you are saying "ooo".

Audio1 Audio2 Audio3 Audio4

Abruti(e) 
n., A retarded person, an idiot
ah-BROO-tee
Accro 
n., addict
ack-RO
Ado 
n., teen; short for 'adolescent'
AH-doh
Apéro 
n., Short for apéritif.
ah-PAIR-roh
Appart' 
n., flat or apartment; short for 'appartement'
ah-PARRT
Aprem' 
n., Short for après-midi.
ah-PRIm
Bagnole 
n., Slang for 'car', 'wheels', 'ride', 'beater', etc
ban-YOLE
Bahut 
n., Slang for 'high school' (formerly for 'factory')
Barj' or Barjot 
adj., mad
n., a madman
BARge
BAHR-joe
Bander 
v., to become erect, to get a hard-on
BAHN-day
Beh 
same as 'Ben'
Ben 
interj. for 'well'. often used at the beginning of a phrase, and followed by "ouais" or "non"
Baañ ('baa' like the sound a sheep makes with a nasalized sound at the end)
Bidule 
n.m., stuff.
Bite 
n., dick
bEEt
Blaireau 
n., litt. 'badger', Loser
bl-AIR-roh
Blairer 
v., litt. 'to smell'. 'I can't support you', "Je ne peux pas te blairer" or "J'peux pas t'blairer !"
bl-AIR-ray
Le Bled 
n., the boondocks
blED
Bof 
interj., 'not really', 'i don't like this', 'let me think a while...'
bOf
Boule 
n., litt. 'ball'. Mean mainly "balls" (as in testicles). Sometimes "arse"/"ass", as in "J'aime Trop Ton Boule" (I Want Your Ass), a song by by French Rapper Fatal Bazooka
Can be a synonym for 'tête', or 'head' in its slang usage; a rough equivalent in English would be 'face' rather than 'head', i.e.:
"Ta boule me manque" = "I miss seeing your sweet face"
bOOL
Bouffer 
v., to eat
n., la bouffe, food
BOOF-fay
Bosser 
v., to work
boss-SAY
Boulot 
n., job
bOOL-oh
Se Branler 
v., to masturbate (lit. to wobble, to wank)
suh BRAhn-lay
Ça a été 
exp., it went well; also a question "Ta présentation, ça a été ?" = "How'd your presentation go?" ; Answers to this question: "Ouais, ça a été" (Yes, it went well) / "Pas du tout" (Not at all)
saw ah AY-TAY
Se casser 
v., to leave ; 'Casse-toi !' : exp., 'Go away !' (rude)
Chaud lapin 
n., Sex maniac (lit. hot rabbit)
show lah-PAÑ
Chier 
v., to shit;
Shee-AY
Les Chiottes 
n, The loo or the bog
SEE-ott
Chouraver 
v, to steal
Cinoche 
n., Cinema to see a film
SEE-noh-sh
La cité 
n., ghetto
see-TAY
Con (masc.), conne (fem.) 
adj., stupid "J'ai été con quand j'ai décidé de sortir" = "I was stupid when I decided to go out"
n., litt. 'cunt' (as used in UK English); "Quel con" = "What an idiot"

exp. "à la con", stupid, in a stupid way. "J'ai cet examen à la con" = "I have this stupid test"

cohÑ
Connerie 
nf, 'crap'
Crever 
v., to burst or explode; to die, 'to kick the bucket'
adj., crevé(e), exhausted. As in "Je suis crevé(e)" = "I'm exhausted"
n., la crève, a cold, the flu. exp.: "J'ai la crève".
creh-vay
lah crehve
Crever la dalle 
I'm starving
Creh-vay la dal
Débile 
n. or adj. slang for "stupid"
DAY-beel
Dirlo 
n. Colloquial word meaning 'headmaster'.
dear-loh
Enculer 
v. To fuck, to bugger.
Equivalent to "fuck in the arse" ("cul"="arse"). Widely used under the form "va te faire enculer" (litt. "go and fuck yourself") which stands for "fuck off".
Also, "enculé" is the participle turned into a substantive, and means "bastard" or "arsehole".
exp. : "enculer des mouches" (litt. "to fuck flies in the arse") means "to nit-pick".
eñ-CU-lay
La fac 
n., college or university; short for 'faculté'
fack
Faire chier 
exp., to annoy
fer shee-ay
Faire la tête 
exp., to pout. Synonyms: 'bouder'(to brood); "faire la gueule".
fer lah tet
Flotte 
nf, water
Foutre 
n. Sperm.
v. Vulgar equivalent of the verb 'faire'; to do or to make ; to put. Commonly employed in vulgar/familiar expressions such as:
"Va te faire foutre" = "Go get fucked/Go fuck yourself"
"Qu'est-ce que tu fous ?" = "What the hell are you doing?"
"J'ai rien à foutre (ici, avec toi)" = "I have nothing to do (here, with you)"
"J'en ai rien à foutre/battre" = "I don't care"
"Je m'en fous", same as previous, see also 'Battre'
"Où est-ce que je l'ai foutu ?" = "Where did i put that?"
"Qu'est-ce que tu en as foutu ?" = "What did you do with this?", "Where did you put this?"
FOO-truh
Hyper 
adj., 'very', 'really' ; "Je suis hyper triste" = "I'm really sad"
EE-pair
Kiffer 
v. Colloquial word meaning 'to like' from Arabic noun 'kif' meaning 'cannabis', . Sometimes used under the form faire kiffer, e.g. Tu me fais trop kiffer.
keef-ay
Génial 
adj. Colloquial word meaning "genius" (as used in UK English), "great", "brilliant", "sensational" or "awesome"
j-knee-al
Gosse 
n.m., Child
Grave 
adj. litt. "severe", roughly means "stupid" e.g. "mes parents sont graves" (my parents are stupid)
adv. roughly meaning "a lot" or "really" e.g "je la kiffe grave!" (I really like her). When used with a predicate, it can be placed before or after it. e.g "il est débile grave, lui!" or "il est grave débile, lui!" (he's really stupid)
grah-ve
Gueule 
n., slang for 'mouth' or 'face'. It can be used in "Ta gueule!" which can be translated into 'Shut up!'/'Shut your face!'.
gull
Gueuler 
v., slang. Means 'to shout'. e.g. 'Arrête de me gueuler dessus' could be translated into 'Stop shouting at me'.
Exists also engueuler, slang for 'to reprimand'.
guh-lay ; oñ-guh-lay
MacDo 
Short for MacDonald's.
mack-doh
Machin 
n.m., Stuff
Merde 
n., excl., translated as 'shit', merde is not seen as vulgar as 'shit'. That is to say, adults use it often, as well as the youth. It can also mean 'rubbish', for example 'Ce repas, c'est de la merde', or 'The meal is crap'
This word has produced the phrase «le mot de cinq lettres», an exact transcribed meaning of the English phase "four-letter word".
maRed / with emphasis or in exclamation: mare-DUH
N'importe quoi 
exp., 'whatever'
n., bullshit as in "C'est du n'importe quoi, ce qu'il dit"
nahm-poRt-UH-kwah
Niquer 
v. Slang for 'to have sexual intercourse'. Often used in insults such as 'Nique ta mère' (Screw your mother), sometimes reduced to 'Ta mère!'. Metaphorically, slang for 'to break' or 'to be great'.
'Je vais te niquer la gueule (vulgaire)' : je vais me battre contre toi !
e.g. 'Cette porte est niquée.' (This door is out of order.)
'Ce jeu nique tout.' (This game is great.)
NEEK-ay
Ouais 
'yeah' (as opposed to "oui" = "yes")
waay
Piquer 
v, to steal, to pick
Putain 
n., excl. Roughly equivalent to 'merde' when used as an exclamation. As a name, old form for 'pute' (whore). 'Putain' is the closest equivalent to the English 'bloody Hell'.
pew-tAÑ
S'en battre (les couilles) 
exp.,
"Je m'en bats (les couilles)" = "I don't care", see 'foutre'
Super 
adj., 'very', 'really' ; "Je suis super content" = "I'm really happy"
soup-air
Taff 
n. work, job, task
taff
Truc 
n. Stuff
trew-uhk
Tronche 
n. Colloquial word meaning 'face'.
TRon-shuh
Vache 
adj., nasty;
Vachement 
adv., France, slang. Literally "cowly", vachement is a synonym for "very", and can be translated in some cases for the English adjective 'quite'. For instance - 'Il est vachement idiot' could be translated as 'He is quite stupid'.
Whilst on the subject of 'vache', a popular French phrase is 'la vache!' which, as an exclamation, means 'damn!' or 'darn!'. For example - 'tu as perdu!' could be greeted with 'la vache!' or 'mince!' or other such expressions of discontent.
It can however be used sometimes as an exclamation of surprise or amazement 'la vache! c'est genial ce truc'
vah-shuh; vah-shuh-MAWÑ
'Vas chier !' 
interj., 'Fuck off', 'Leave me'
vah-shee-ay
Zigounette 
n.f., dick
Zinzin 
n. Colloquial word meaning 'mad'.
Zgeg 
n.m., dick
Zouz 
n.m., Girlfriend or The girl you flirt with "Touche pas à ma zouz" Don't touch my "Zouz"
zoooz

Verlan[edit]

Verlan is roughly similar to English Pig Latin, in that certain words are split in half, and the two componenents switch positions, but do not necessarily retain all letters (due to French pronunciation patterns). For example, if you have word [12], in verlan it will become [2-1]. The word verlan is in itself an example of this; it comes from the word l'envers (meaning 'backwards'). Verlan is, unlike Pig Latin, quite commonly used among young adults and even adults. Common verlan expressions include:

Beur ou rebeu 
n., A person of Arab descent. from arabe. ('Beur' is so commonly used that it now has its own Verlan form, 'reub').
Chelou 
adj., Fishy, shady, suspicious. from louche.
Ienche 
n., Dog. from "chien". "Les ienches, ca me fait flipper." (Pronounced "ee-ansh")
Keuf 
Policeman (not polite) from flic "Il est chelou ce mec ! j'vais le balancer aux keufs."
Keum  
n., man, guy, dude, from mec.
Meuf 
n., Woman, chick, girl. from femme.
Ouf 
adj., Crazy, ridiculous. from fou. Used commonly in the expression "c'est un truc de ouf" ("that is madness").
Portnawak 
see 'n'importe quoi'
Relou 
adj., Not funny, difficult, something that sucks. from lourd, heavy. (the d is dropped in Verlan because the final d does not pronounce in lourd).
Ripou 
adj., Rotten, awful, gross. from pourri
Ripou = un policier qui commet des actes graves illégaux
pl : des ripoux
Teuf 
n., Party. from fête.
Venère 
adj., aggravated, angry, pissed off. from enervé(e).

Common chat abbreviations[edit]

There are two general guidelines:

  • é can be substituted for all homophonic equivalents including "-ais", "-ait", "-es" (such as in the articles les and des), the conjunction "et" (and), and the verb "est" (third person sing. conjugation of être, "to be").
  • words that end in a silent -s commonly drop this s: such as pas (pa), and vois (voi).
a+ 
prep.+adj., à plus, à bientôt, "until later".
biz 
n., bisous, "kisses".
subj+verb, c'est, "it is".
ct 
subj+verb, c'était, "it was"; imparfait (past) conjugation of c'est.
dc 
conj., donc, "therefore, so".
dsl 
adj., désolé(e), "sorry".
fok 
exp., il faut que, "it is necessary".
tfk? 
exp., Tu fais quoi?", "What are you doing?"
ke 
interr. and relative pronoun, que, "that".
ki 
interr. and rel. pron., qui, "that" or "which".
koi 
interrogative, quoi, "what"; also seen in pourkoi, "why".
mdr 
exp., mort(e) de rire, "laughing myself to death", (equivalent of lol, laughing out loud).
mé 
conj., mais, "but".
pr 
prep., pour, "for".
ptdr 
exp., peté(e) de rire, "bursting with laughter", (equivalent of lol, laughing out loud). stronger than mdr.
tt 
adj., tout(e), "all"; also seen in the expression tout le monde.
nrv 
adj. enervé(e), pissed off, angry, aggravated.