French word of the day: Rouspéter

French word of the day: Rouspéter
Photo: Annie Spratt/Unsplash/Nicolas Raymond
How foul moods and farts fused into a French everyday expression.

Why do I need to know rouspéter?

Because you can use it either to argue against something, or if you just want to complain.

What does it mean?

The verb rouspéter means to disagree or to whine.

Rouspéter is an old expression that first appeared in 1877. It comes from the ancient verbs rousser or rouscailler which mean to 'express your bad mood'.

It was fused with the verb péter which means to 'fart', but also to 'break'.

When your views differ from what is being said or done and you want to let everyone know, you rouspète – you whine.


Rouspéter also means to 'moan', and to 'say it out loud'.

Use it like this

A chaque fois que je vais à la piscine, il rouspète – Every time I go to the pool, he kicks up a stink.

Il a rouspété quand son patron a refusé d’augmenter son salaire – He complained when his boss refused to raise his salary.

Elle n’arrête pas de rouspéter ! – She keeps moaning! 


Fulminer – speaking vehemently about someone or something.

Maugréer / ronchonner – complaining, showing you're in a foul mood

Protester – violently expressing your disagreement. 


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