Not so easy to find. The French language is rich in phrases, expressions and metaphors, each more extravagant than the next. Thus, in the best known, we find the expression “raining ropes”, to say that it is raining heavily. We can also say that we are “at the end of our rope”, which means that we are exhausted. Or “have the compass in the eye” to tell someone that they are good at judging distances.

Each region claims that its expression is theoretically the first or the best. The case that would possibly be the best known in France is this: do we say pain au chocolat or chocolatine? According to RTL, it is the South-West of France that uses the word “chocolatine”. Otherwise, the rest of the country uses “pain au chocolat”.

Planet has compiled a list of 10 unusual and little-known expressions of the French language, according to Le Figaro and Français de nos Régions. Find out if you can guess the meaning!

All these expressions are found not only in France but also throughout the French-speaking world. Thus, it is estimated by the Observatoire de la francophonie, in a statistical study by LFDM of 2022, that French is the 5th most spoken language in the world, with 321 million French speakers and a presence in 112 territories and countries.

The countries of Northern and Western Europe are home to 44% of the population speaking this language in 2018. The second place with the most French speakers is sub-Saharan Africa and the Indian Ocean. According to the data from the study, there will be no less than 955 million French speakers who will populate the world in 2060. With, they too, their very specific local expressions…