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French word of the Day: Moula

French word of the Day is Moula
Photo: Annie Spratt/Unsplash/Nicolas Raymond
Running out of ways to talk about money? Here’s the latest trending word.  

Why do I need to know moula?

Because the French Gen Z (people born between 1997 and 2010) use it all the time, and it keeps getting more and more popular.  

What does it mean? 

La moula or la moulaga is a slang word to talk about money, and about cash in particular. 

It was popularised in rap songs in 2015, especially in the song Caramel by the famous French rapper Booba.

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In his song, Booba says:  J’dois faire du biff de la moula, du caramel  – I have to make cash, money, caramel.

But the young generation really started using the word in 2019. 

It likely has the same root as the English slang term for money ‘moolah’ which first appeared in around the 1920s, but was repopularised when US rappers started using it again around the 1990s. Exactly where the word comes from in the first place is debatated but some have suggested that it comes from a Fijian word for money. 

According to Dico Citations, moula could also be derived from mula, a mule that was used as a bargaining chip.    

Use it like this

Je me fais de la moula I make a lot of money. 

Donnez-moi de la moulaga – Give me some money. 

Synonyms

French has lots of slang terms for cash, here are some of the most common 

Le Fric 

Le Pognon

Le Blé (which also means wheat, so is similar to saying ‘dough’ for cash in English)

La Thune

L’Oseille (feminine)


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