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  5. "J'ai si faim que je pourrais…

"J'ai si faim que je pourrais manger un cheval."

Translation:I am so hungry that I could eat a horse.

February 21, 2013



Given recent events in europe, it shouldn't be too hard for the speaker to find a horse!

February 21, 2013


Quite the opposite, because of the recent events, there are no more horses left ;)

July 25, 2013


Pffft, nothing wrong with eating horses – very nice meat, providing it’s not a work or race horse. In fact, it’s quite common to eat them in many parts of Europe – at the very least in Slovenia, Switzerland and France.

November 3, 2014


The meat is dry and sweet. I would eat it readily as long as the horse has had a good life and death.

May 31, 2017


Formerly a very common meat in Quebec as well, although pushback from the RSPCA and federal legislation has been making it disappear from store shelves.

October 17, 2017


It is a french expression , that means " I am very, very hungry".

December 24, 2014


We also have it in Poland, but apparently we can get even hungrier than the French, because "we could eat a horse with its hooves" :D

August 26, 2016


I believe that it is an English expression, too!

May 17, 2017


Everyone says that ish.

January 11, 2018


there is a horse section in the butcher area of my local carrefour supermarket here in the french alps. i kid you not.

March 26, 2017


What recent events would that be? :)

October 20, 2015


The comment was written 2 years ago. At that time, in Europe, there was a big scandal of big companies selling horse meat as beef...

October 21, 2015


Was the scandal true? :o

October 21, 2015


Reminds me of the classic old SNL skit with the late Gilda Radner:

"Oh, great! I'm so thirsty, I could drink a horse!"

Boy, are you stupid. It's "eat a horse". "I could eat a horse."

"Well, you do whatever you want, Fern, I'm still thirsty! "

July 25, 2014


It's certainly used in English a lot.

September 19, 2013


Do French cultures actually use this expression?

July 20, 2013


There is a similar expression in Polish (and probably in other european languages as well, including English : http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/I_could_eat_a_horse), and we even add "with hooves". Noone is eating horses here ( at least not on purpose) and horse meat is not part of polish cuisine.

March 2, 2014


Actually, yes. Cheval here is meant to be seen as a big quantity of food. (That's the way I've thought about this idiomatic expression since childhood.) You could say "J'ai si faim que je pourrais manger un éléphant" without changing the meaning.

However, mptmpt's comment had me thinking about the "taboo" implication of eating a horse. I guess a city girl like me didn't consider the bond between the horse and its owner.

August 21, 2013


Hi, most of my French friends rather use "je mangerais une vache", so a cow instead of a horse.

October 22, 2017


Is this pharse actually native in French or just a verbatim translation from English?

November 3, 2014


It is used in France, yes. I think it should be in the Idioms skill, but maybe it's too difficult.


September 2, 2015

  • 1869

Except that it is not an idiom (an expression which has a meaning completely different from its literal translation). It is rather a metaphor for being hungry enough to eat an impossibly large amount of food.

July 16, 2016


Consider yourself uninvited to dinner at my farm.

March 26, 2017


"I would be able to eat a horse" it is wrong?

March 20, 2014

  • 1869

The Present Conditional form of most verbs uses "would" + verb. Two notable exceptions are pouvoir (all cases in Present Conditional use "could" -or- "would be able to") and devoir (all cases in Present Conditional use "should" or "ought to"). Source: Barron's 501 French Verbs.

July 16, 2016


Since the subjects are the same ("je" and "je"), should one use an infinitive there instead? I.e., "J'ai si faim de pouvoir manger un cheval." Maybe I'm constructing it wrong, please correct as necessary.

September 10, 2013


I have this question too. Commenting to follow.

July 19, 2014


No, that just doesn't work. You should keep both "je" here.

September 7, 2014


Allez donc a la boucherie chevaline!

December 1, 2013


"Si" here is translated "So", isn't it?

September 15, 2015

  • 1869

Yes, "J'ai si faim ...." = I am so hungry.... You may also use "tellement" : J'ai tellement faim que....

July 16, 2016


Also with the same meaning: "j'ai une faim de loup".

February 10, 2016


Merci Simon Le Bon :)

May 16, 2016


The same in Polish - "wilczy głód " :)

August 26, 2016


I could eat a scabby horse between two bread vans.

February 2, 2017


Or even, "I could eat a scabby horse and his jockey". What would that be in French?

November 30, 2017


Why is the infinitive "manger" used instead of "mange" ?

August 20, 2017


Well the sentence consists of two verbs: Pouvoir and manger. Pouvoir is the verb that has been conjugated in time and person. "Pouvoir" means: "To be able to". "Je pourrais" is the present conditionnel: hence: "I WOULD be able to"

August 20, 2017


Famished means the same as hungry.

November 2, 2015


Not precisely the same, it is used, in British English at least, for being extremely hungry, in the same way as we might say "I am starving" - not literally true but a bit of hyperbole.

December 19, 2015


I think this sentence is 'subjuntive' What am I think wrong?

December 1, 2016


I'm going to argue that "je pourrias manger un cheval" is literally "i would be able to eat a horse" and is the same thing as "i could eat a horse." In support of my contention, DL itself gives both "would be able" and "could" as acceptable translations in their "we could live here in peace" example.

Speaking of literal, the introductory clause is literally, "I have such hunger ..." but DL shot me down on that one too!

December 7, 2016


Dothraki alert!

March 31, 2017


I am so hungry that I could eat a horse

Although marked correct by DL its one of those you would rarely hear ... far more likely to hear 'I'm so hungry I could eat a horse'

April 29, 2017


Why do you need the conditional in this phrase? Why isn't plain old 'pouvoir' (peux) suitable?

July 15, 2017
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