https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ZarrouguiL

French slang phrases, according to how old you are!

Hi there,

A more superficial and funny post today for those who want to know some French slang. There is a lot of slang in films and series, so it might be useful to know a bit of it.

The thing with slang, is that every generation has its own. You know you're getting old when you have to struggle to stay in touch with the new slang that pops out (which I do...). So today I'll show you some common slang in French. For each phrase, the first translation will be how people above a certain age would say it (you could hear it in movies, books), the second how "young" people would say it (you could hear it in series, youtube videos), and the third how even younger people would say it (in new songs, youtube videos, tweets...).

Note : There are many other possible slang phrases for each one, these are my subjective choices. Most of the "elderly" slang is still also use by young people. Don't take this post too seriously ;)

  • Drop it! -> Laisse béton! (Laisse tomber backwards) / Lâche l'affaire ! / Supprime !
  • That's dope! -> C'est sensas ! (sensationnel shorten) / Ça tue ! / C'est d'la frappe ! (ou : c'est d'la peufra !)
  • You nailed it! -> T'as tapé dans le mille ! / T'as fait du sale ! / T'as dead ça !
  • Whadup ? -> Quoi d'neuf ? / Ça dit quoi ? / C'est quoi les bails ?
  • That's lame! -> C'est naze! / C'est pété ! / C'est claqué au sol !
  • What the F ? -> C'est quoi ce bazar ? / What the F ?
  • I don't give a damn! -> Je m'en balance ! / Rien à foutre ! / Balek ! ("Je m'en bats les cou....." shorten)
  • Way to go! -> Bien joué ! / Bien ouej ! / GG !
  • You're hammered bro! -> T'es bourré l'ami ! / T'es fracass frérot ! (from the verb fracasser)
  • You're my homie! -> T'es mon pote ! / T'es la mif ! (famille -> mifa -> mif) / T'es le sang !

Well it was pretty fun to do. Hope you enjoyed it! Let me know if you have other ideas of slang idioms to translate :)

Cheers.

August 12, 2019

31 Comments


https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Njak_

Bien ouej, t'es le sang Un petit lingot parce que t'as dead ça, c'est d'la frappe

August 13, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/petermoldovia

Chouette

August 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/W-Ruggles-Wolfe

My browser now has a folder named "The ZarrouguiL File". (I might shorten it to "The Z-File", just for fun.)

You post the most interesting and wonderful stuff! I'll be dictionary surfing for a few hours on these.

August 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ZarrouguiL

Hahaha awesome! Glad I could help :)

August 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/KyraSaad

my favourite phrase is "ramène ta fraise" it means "get over here!". SO CUTE

August 13, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Jim606185

That's great. When I saw Laisse béton (tomber), I immediately thought of a French Canadian film I saw called "Le Dep". It was a great film, but some of the Canadian French had me in stitches. Laisse tomber le pistolet is maybe what you'd say in Standard Metropolitan French, but in the film, it was "droppez le gun!" (rhymes with l'un) :)

I think viewers from France would have needed subtitles.

August 14, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/TimDiggle

If you watch TV5 (the French TV channel broadcast across the globe for expatriates) many of the Canadian programmes and films do indeed have sub-titles!

August 14, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/arnaud215966

dude i have spoken french my whole life and i've almost never heard half of these slang

August 14, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ivor810183

My favourite French idiom: "a la vache!" Heard it used all the time 30 years ago en Touraine. Is it peculiar to that region or all over France?

August 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ZarrouguiL

Yeah. It's not really used anymore by the young generation, but still it's a very common idiom used all over France.

"Ah la vache !" or "Oh la vache !" means "Holy cow!". E.g : "Ah la vache ! Je me suis fait super mal !".

August 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ZarrouguiL

Note : if you see a cow that is being really mean, you could say : "Oh la vache ! Cette vache est vachement vache." (vachement is a common way to say really)

August 13, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ivor810183

Thanks for the reply. Good to know it's still used (if only by the older generation! :) )...

August 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lucia888648

Well, I'm a French teenager and I still use it quite often (but then I might be a bit old inside )

August 13, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ivor810183

Lol :)) peut-être plus sage plutôt que plus âgée...

August 13, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/jairapetyan

En anglais, ils disent: "Tu es une vieille âme" quand une personne est plus sage qu'on ne le verrait normalement dans un corps jeune.

August 13, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/mana_360

All over in France, everyone says that!

August 13, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sakura175

I'm French and that's right xD

August 13, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Sven323502

Dear zarrouguiL, you example with laisse tomber - laisse béton rings a bell. Is it called verlan? Is this in general still popular to exchange the sylabbles or is this dedicated just for gangster rappers?

August 13, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ZarrouguiL

It's still quite common for some words like :

  • Fou -> ouf : "J'ai réussi mon examen, c'est ouf !"
  • Louche -> chelou : "...Pourtant j'avais pas révisé, c'est chelou."
  • Lourd -> relou : "Il insiste de ouf, il est relou"
  • Enervé -> vénère : "Il était vénère quand il a cassé son portable !" ...

Many other verlan words are not used anymore and sound old fashioned :

  • Keuf (flic) : policeman
  • Zarbi (bizarre) : weird
  • Zicmu (musique)
  • À oilpé (à poil) : naked

And some of them feel like they will never disappear because the verlan is as much used (or even more used) than the real word in the general population :

  • Beuh (herbe) : Weed
  • Meuf (femme)
  • Teub (bite) : D...
August 13, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/MertMort

Ha, I've been watching French TV. I figured out from context what beuh and meuf meant but had no idea where they came from. I'd never heard of "verlan" slang. Thanks for this!

August 15, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Lucia888648

It is actually quite popular ( a lot of people do it in my school, even though I don't). It's mostly something that "trendy" people say

August 13, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/minou33350

tu as tapé dans le mille, veut dire "tu as vu tout juste. Quoi de neuf ? "qu'y a t il de nouveau, quelles sont les nouvelles ? C'est naze = c'est nul T'es bourré = tu es ivre Tu es mon mon pot = tu es mon ami

August 14, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Kevin603120

I've never understood why The French reverse words in their slang.

August 15, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/arnaud215966

There really is no reason for this, some people simply prefer to speak in verlan because they like it, other maybe because it’s more cryptic. There can be a lot of reason

August 15, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/HodayaNiss

Merci! :)

August 15, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/SkywalkerLily

Hey- cool post, thank you. But I have two tips- one, pronouncitiation is difficult for some people so if you could put a prounciation thing in there, that'd would help a lot of people. And my second and more stressed one is thus...please leave cursing (or not "technical" cursing like 'What the *") out. Some people don't curse and believe it's wrong. So I'm not offended by it but there are also young users that their parents keep them away from such profanity. Thanks a bunch.

August 15, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/ZarrouguiL

Are you talking about What the Floops? Haha. I'm very aware of that, and that's why I always blur bad words in my posts. This post is safe for children.

I take note of your tip about pronunciation.

August 15, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DuolingoWorldMe3

Hi!!!

August 12, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/Ruby360784

Salut, ca dit quoi?

August 13, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/DuoIsstEis

La pêche ou la banane ?

August 14, 2019

https://www.duolingo.com/profile/minou33350

j'ai la pêche. je suis en forme. J'ai la banane 'c'est être content, avoir le sourire"

August 15, 2019
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