French Word of the Day: raplapla

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French Word of the Day: raplapla

This unusual French word is just what you need to describe something that isn't at its best.


Why do I need to know raplapla?
You can use this funny sounding French word to describe old objects, bread, your hair or even yourself, on a bad day.
What does raplapla mean?
Raplapla is an informal adjective that means ‘worn out’, ‘tired’ or ‘flat’.
It’s thought to have evolved from either the expression être à plat, meaning ‘to be tired’, or replati, the past tense of the verb replatir, meaning ‘to level’ or ‘flatten out’.
As this word is an adjective, it’s often used with the verb être, meaning ‘to be’, for example je suis raplapla (I am worn out). 
But it is also commonly used with the verb sentir, meaning ‘to feel’, for example il se sent tout raplapla aujourd’hui (he feels completely exhausted today.)
Raplapla can be used to describe things as well as people. 
In this case it’s normally used for something old and worn out, such as le matelas est tout raplapla (the mattress is all sunken.)
Or you could also use it to describe something that is a bit flat and lifeless, for example mes cheveux sont raplaplas (my hair is flat and tired looking).
Some alternatives for raplapla, which are less enjoyable to say, include épuisé (exhausted) and sans énergie (without energy).
How can I use it?
Je me sens tout raplapla. - I feel completely worn out.
Un pain confectionné uniquement avec de la farine de châtaignes risque d’être raplapla car il est sans gluten. - Bread made only with chestnut flour could turn out flat because it’s gluten-free.
(The examples above come from


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