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FRENCH WORD OF THE DAY

French word of the Day: Jeudredi

Confused by this one? You're not the only one.

French word of the Day: Jeudredi
Photo: Annie Spratt/Unsplash/Nicolas Raymond

Why do I need to know jeudredi?

Firstly a quick caveat, this is not a word that you will find in the dictionary. But it is a word that's being bandied around quite a lot at the moment.

What does it mean?

It's a mixture of jeudi – Thursday – and vendredi – Friday and it basically means you don't know what day it is.

It's a new construction for the lockdown age, and describes the sense when you have lost track of what day it is, since with most people confined to the house and many not working, one day is pretty much the same as another.

Dois-je ouvrir une bouteille de rosé? Pourquoi pas, c'est jeudredi – Shall I open a bottle of rosé? Why not, it's either Thursday or Friday.

 

If you're a Twitter user you might also see jeudredi used as a hashtag to describe typical lockdown behaviour, whether it's having pizza for breakfast or failing to remember how to do simple tasks.

 

It's probably unlikely to be approved by the French language guardians Academie français but it's rather a handy little construction to describe the general sense of discombobulation that we are all feeling right now.

So happy jeudredi to all The Local's readers.

 

Member comments

  1. What an abomination of an analysis of that Pickles cartoon! The old man isn’t addled – he’s using the fly spatula because he just doesn’t care and is a cool old man! What jeudrudi?!

  2. unh? Wot? wich cartoon wiere?
    I love the idea of jeudredi. I’ve been retired for years and the only way I know what day it is, is by looking at my ‘stay alive’ pill dispencer. Even so, I do occaisonally have a jeudredi moment when I might be overwhelmed with excitement and forget to take my jeudi pills so that taking them on vendredi have a vague feeling that I’ve slipped back in time or depending on mood, that I’ve been cheated out of a day.

  3. Jeudredi is a great word – easier to pronounce and less laboured than ‘discombobulation’. Is there a verb ? Such as “I am jeudredied” = “I don’t know what day of the week it is”. Makes a change, at any rate.

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FRENCH WORD OF THE DAY

French Expression of the Day: Robin des bois

He's the legendary Englishman who is surprisingly relevant to French political discourse.

French Expression of the Day: Robin des bois

Why do I need to know Robin des bois?

Because you might be wondering why the French reference this English outlaw during protest movements 

What does it mean?

Robin des bois roughly pronounced roe-bahn day bwah – is the French version of “Robin Hood” – the legendary outlaw who stole from the rich and gave to the poor. 

Robin Hood is part of English folklore, with the first references to him occurring sometime during the 13th or 14th century. He did not become Robin des bois for some time – as the legend did not spread to the majority of French people until at least the 18th or 19th century. 

Robin des bois most likely made his big entrance on the French stage in the 19th century when the novel Ivanhoe (1819), which tells tales of medieval England, was translated into French. 

The fabled outlaw was welcomed by the French, particularly romantic writers and thinkers of the time who saw him as a symbol of the fight against the aristocracy. 

But the French had their own versions of Robin Hood before the English legend made its way to l’Hexagone – like the “Louis Mandrin” who supposedly rebelled against corrupt tax collectors during the Ancien Regime. 

Over the years, the French – particularly those on the political left – have evoked “Robin des bois” during strikes and protests, and it’s relatively common to see protest movements or direct action groups name themselves after Robin Hood.

The English outlaw also had his own French television series between 1963 and 1966 – though this time he was called “Thierry La Fronde” and he lived in France during the Hundred Years’ War.

Use it like this

Nous devons nous attaquer aux actions de Robin des Bois afin d’aider la classe ouvrière à payer leurs factures d’énergie, a déclaré le syndicat dans un communiqué de presse. – We must take action like Robin Hood to help the working class pay for their energy bills, the union said in a flyer. 

Le restaurateur était un véritable Robin des Bois – il avait tendance à surfacturer les tables des riches et à sous-facturer celles de la classe populaire. – The restaurant owner was a real Robin Hood – he had a tendency of overcharging tables of rich people and under-charging those of poor folks.

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