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French Expression of the day: Avoir rien à voir

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French Expression of the day: Avoir rien à voir
Photo: Deposit photos
08:48 CEST+02:00
This useful phrase has everything to do with learning French.

Why have we chosen avoir rien à voir?

This common expression has a few different meanings that make it a useful one to be able to throw into your French conversations.

So, what does avoir rien à voirmean?

Often misheard as avoir rien avoir (which is meaningless), avoir rien à voir literally means ‘to have nothing to see.’

This can be used in a literal sense, as a way of telling people to stop looking at something, such as Circulez il n'y a rien à voir. (Move along, there’s nothing to see here.)

But, generally, rather than being an expression you use in a blacked-out room, this handy phrase can be translated in two ways. 

Firstly, this expression can mean something is completely different or nothing like something that you might expect to be similar. For example, le film n’a rien à voir avec le livre (The film is nothing like the book.)

It can be used as a way to say you aren’t involved or have nothing to do with something. For example, Je n’ai rien à voir avec sa decision. (I have nothing to with his decision.)

The headline below uses avoir rien àvoir to stress that President Emmanuel "Macron's proposal has nothing to do with universal income".

Adapting avoir rien à voir to use in different situations is fairly straightforward, as you can just change the verb avoir to suit the time or the person you are talking about. 

Instead of using Je n’ai…in the sentence above you could just as easily use Ils n’ont rien à voir avec…(They have nothing to do with…)

Examples

Tout cela n’a rien à voir avec moi! 

All this has nothing to do with me!

Ça n’a rien à voir avec eux. C’est moi qui s’en occupe. 

It has nothing to do with them. I’m in charge of this.

Mon niveau d'anglais et le tiens n'ont rien à voir. Tu parles bien mieux que moi!

My level of English and yours are completely different. You speak much better than I do!

(The above example comes from wordreference.com)

CLICK HERE to learn many more useful French words and expressions

 
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