French word of the Day: Engueulade

French word of the Day: Engueulade
Photo: Annie Spratt/Unsplash/Nicolas Raymond
If you're in one of these, you'll know about it.

Why do I need to know engueulade?

Because they happen from time to time, but they might get more frequent over the next six months.

What does it mean?

It means an argument, a row, a spat or a shouting match.

The word itself is colloquial but not offensive, although it does imply that the exchange was quite heated, so you wouldn’t describe a polite exchange of views between two colleagues as une engueulade. If they stand up and start screaming at each other, however, then feel free to wheel this one out.

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See also on The Local:

It comes from the word gueule which is a colloquial term for mouth (like gob or maw) and which is often used in the phrase ferme ta gueule (or simply ta guele) which is a usually aggressive way of telling someone to shut up.

The below clip from comedian Bertrand Usclat warns of a ‘new epidemic’ of engueulade on the horizon, related to the 2022 presidential elections – an election campaign that still has more than six months left to run but is already increasingly ill-tempered.

Use it like this

Mon voisin et moi, on a eu une belle engueulade – My neighbour and I had a proper shouting match

Je déteste ses vêtements, mais ça vaut pas l’engueulade – I hate his clothes, but it’s just not worth the bust-up


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