Tuesday, October 18, 2011


Speaking French is not easy. At least, for me it isn't. It's already difficult to understand, as the written and the actual pronounced words are quite different. For instance, we don't say the end of the words. This is why McDonald's here is pronounced McDonald. Or McDo, actually. There are exceptions, of course, they prove the rule, right? :)

For me in the beginning, understanding a native seemed very hard. The words didn't sound to have beginnings, ends, it was horrible. So when I first heard of the verlan, I freaked out. What is this scary thing that upset me? L'envers of the words. This is a slang, where you mix up the syllables. When you are done with the mixing, you change how the syllables were originally written to adapt to the pronounciation, you may leave some of them out, and ta-da, you're done! There are no rules, you just have to know them. The name of the phenomenon is made like that as well: l'envers - l'en vers - vers l'en - vers len - ver len - verlen - verlan. Easy, right? It is used in informal conversations, mostly to hide the original meaning a bit.

Here are some examples:

  • meuf - femme (woman)
  • keum - mec (guy)
  • ouf - fou (crazy)
  • reuch - cher (expensive)
  • vénère - enervé,e (pissed off)
  • chelou - louche (weird)
How do you like them?

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