Mots difficiles en anglais


apprivoisé « They've got a tame hedgehog. »
[story, style, match, film] fade « Some of today's political demonstrations look rather tame.    »
apprivoiser, dompter, dresser « The Amazons were the first to tame horses. »


décupler => The number of landmine incidents in Colombia has increased tenfold since 1991


potin She told me a juicy titbit about Claire.


(péj.) imbécile, crétin, débile You moron! She's exactly the kind of moron you described.


principal obstacle. France has been the holdout in trying to negotiate an end to the dispute.




dispute  a feud between the prime minister and his chancellor   
a family feud
to feud (with) = se disputer, se quereller their families had feuded since their daughters quarrelled two years ago.
blood feud =vendetta


[+siren, engine] hurlement the whine of air-raid sirens
pleurnicher, gémir The dog started to whine with impatience
[siren, engine] hurler The engines whined

to grovel

(fig.) ramper He whined and grovelled and apologised
to grovel before/to sb I don't grovel to anybody.

to sting

[insect] piquer bees do not normally sting unless provoked. I've been stung.

silver lining

to have a silver lining = avoir de bons côtés
every cloud has a silver lining = à une chose, malheur est bon


barrage plans to build a dam on the River Danube




benne à ordures


saisie « after a foreclosure, »« homeowners are sometimes left with absolutely nothing »


faussement effarouché, faussement timide
séducteur a coy little smile.
évasif to be coy over sth, to be coy about sth « The Chancellor was coy over the deal with the Prime Minister. »


enjambée,  foulée he walked with long strides.
démarche he had a purposeful stride = Il avait une démarche décidée.
avancée a great stride has been taken towards our goal


éloquent a silver-tongued lawyer.


fouet, cravache
to whip = battre to whip the cream
to crack the whip = to use one's authority to make someone work harder, usually by threatening or punishing them
whiplash = coup du lapin


vanne no more wisecracks!

to maul

mettre en pièces He was mauled by a bear He was mauled by the tabloids.


"belt and braces" = très prudent, qui garantit une sécurité maximum a belt-and-braces solution
accolades balanced braces
bracing = vivifiant


[clothes] terne, morne Mary was wearing the same drab grey dress.
[room, place] glauque his drab little office   
[life] monotone a way of escaping the tedium of their drab lives 


randonnée We were out on a country ramble an hour's ramble through the woods   
to go for a ramble = faire une randonnée
to ramble = to hike I was rambling over the hills of Yorkshire.   

to ramble on = déblatérer she began rambling on about her childhood. 


(for food, cigarettes) envie irrésistible smokers feel cravings roughly an hour after the last cigarette


fermer les yeux sur, approuver (tacitement) You cannot condone baby buying


obstacle Being the daughter of a famous film star can be more of a hindrance than a help in getting your career off the ground.


salope, pute

to daunt

intimider he was daunted by the high quality of work they expected

to baffle

laisser perplexe The question has baffled experts for years his reaction baffled me «

baffling = déroutant, troublant « the most baffling medical mystery. »


combines Lynette thinks that our shenanigans have gotten a little out of hand


sex-appeal, charme
chance, bonne étoile


(=player, competitor, team) outsider
the underdog (in society) les opprimés Labour, constantly reassuring the middle class, was no longer the party of the underdog.


éloge(s), faire l'éloge de qn many others praised Sanford for taking a strong stand.


[dish, water, grave] peu profond the shallow end = le petit bain
[person, mind, novel] superficiel, qui manque de profondeur
  shallows = bas-fond thousands of little fish swim in the shallows.

wack job

cinglé, psychopathe (péj.) Let's cross the street. We don't want to walk next to that wack job on the corner who's walking in circles and talking to himself.


that's my cue to = c'est le signal pour que je... When she coughs, it's my cue to get up out of the chair.
on cue = au bon moment




the gist of his speech = l'essentiel de son discours
to give sb the gist of sth = résumer qch à qn en deux mots I missed his speech; can you give me the gist of what he said?

rule of thumb

méthode empirique, approximativement.
as a rule of thumb = en règle générale
by rule of thumb = à vue de nez


[+dog, wolf] croc
[+snake] crochet the cobra sank its venomous fangs into his hand.

to contend with sth

affronter qch, faire face It's bad enough when you have to contend with accidental fires   
to contend for sth  = se disputer qch three parties are contending for power.


laisser tomber, abandonner the soft drink company has ditched plans to use Madonna in its advertising
[= to dump] plaquer she's just ditched her boyfriend.


[person] collet monté, guindé She was a very prim lady

to hump

(argot) baiser Marcel, stop humping the lamp! Teach your dog to hump your leg on command!


exténué, las she looked weary, a weary smile.
to be weary of = être las de
to weary of = se lasser de he's beginning to weary of sitting still.   
x war-weary = las de la guerre ; world-weary = las de ce monde


prostitué(e) Hi Snoop. What'chu wanna be when you grow up? I wanna be a motherfuckin' hustler !


frère, sœur His siblings are mostly in their early twenties.
sibling rivalry = rivalité entre frères et sœurs Sibling rivalry often causes parents anxieties.

case in point

(to be a) case in point = être un bon exemple Lack of communication causes relationships to fail. Your parents' marriage is a case in point.


rancune a disabled man with a grudge against society
to bear a grudge = garder rancune I don't bear a grudge.
to bear a grudge against sb garder rancune à qn, en vouloir à qn  He appears to have a grudge against certain players.
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