Mots difficiles en anglais


to drop a hint = faire une allusion
to give a hint that = laisser entendre que...
  to give a strong hint that =  laisser clairement entendre que... « The Minister gave a strong hint that the government had changed its mind. »
give me a hint (=clue) = mettez-moi sur la voie, donnez-moi une indicatio
to take the hint = comprendre l'allusion
I can take a hint! =  L'allusion ne m'a pas échappé !

to hint (that) = laisser entendre que... « He hinted that he might soon be considering retirement »


large sourire  « She looked up at him, a big grin on her face. »
sourire « He leaned towards me and grinned broadly. »


cool, great   « Look at this kickass website, »


for your information

Preemptive war

guerre préventive

for a rainy day

to save sth for a rainy day = garder une poire pour la soif (épargner pour les jours difficiles à venir).
« I'll put the rest in the bank for a rainy day » (=je vais mettre le reste à la banque histoire de garder une poire pour la soif).

to brace

redresser « He stood to attention, bracing his shoulders »  « He braced his back against the wall. »
se préparer mentalement « She braced herself for her forthcoming ordeal. »

to bite the bullet

assumer, prendre sur soi « The teacher knew I cheated so i had to bite the bullet and confess » « The severe drought is forcing everybody to bite the bullet and use less water. »

to be in labour

être en travail (=en train d'accoucher) « she's in labour »




tromperie (=deceit) « You must forgive my little deception. »
to obtain sth by deception = obtenir qch par des moyens frauduleux
self-deception = aveuglement m 
to deceive = tromper « I was really hurt that he had deceived me. »
to deceive sb into doing sth = amener qn à faire qch par la ruse « He deceived the council into giving him money. »
to deceive o.s. = se faire des illusions
deceptive (=deceitful) = trompeur « Beth knew his fragile appearance was deceptive »

to bail out

[+prisoner] payer la caution de « He has been jailed eight times. Each time, friends bailed him out. »
  [+friend, company] renflouer   he desperately needed cash to bail out the ailing restaurant. « If the bank won't lend me any more money, I know my mother will bail me out. »


[conditions, weather, injuries, tragedy] épouvantable
[stupidity, ignorance, behaviour] affligeant « their appalling ignorance about basic hygiene » « She's an appalling cook » (= elle est très mauvaise cuisinière).


[weather] affreux « The weather was dreadful »
[mistake] terrible « a dreadful mistake »
[news, situation] terrible, affreux « They told us the dreadful news » My « financial situation is dreadful. » (=appalling)
You look dreadful = Tu as une mine affreuse.


pot, cruche
nichon « Look at those Jugs! »


chauve « He is going bald. »




[departure, return] précipité « a hasty departure »  « his hasty return to work after his hospital stay »  
[decision, conclusion] hâtif « I don't want to make any hasty decisions about my future. » « don't be hasty » (=ne prend pas de décision hâtive)
to beat a hasty retreat = prendre ses jambes à son cou

to expel

chasser, expulser « Peasants were expelled from their villages. »
renvoyer, exclure « He had been expelled from his previous school for stealing. »


dévoreur de livres, rat  m  de bibliothèque

to unravel

(se) démêler, (se) défaire « He could unravel a knot that others wouldn't even attempt. »
(se) dénouer « Carter was still trying to unravel the truth of the woman's story » « She is trying to unravel the mystery of her husband's disappearance. » « Gradually, James' story unravels. »


voyou « you are such a scamp! »



to be neck and neck

[horses, runners, competitors] être au coude à coude « They were neck and neck right up to the finishing line. » « Democrats Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton are running neck-and-neck in California »



suck up

lèche-cul, fayot
to suck up to = fayoter « Now that he's the boss they're all sucking up to him, hoping to get big raises. »

to bug

  [+room] poser des micros dans « He heard that they were planning to bug his office. »
[+phone] brancher sur table d'écoute « I found out my phone was bugged. »
embêter, casser les pieds à « That's what bugs me about the whole business. » « I only did it to bug my parents »


rein « He's got kidney trouble » (=il a des problèmes de reins)
kidney disease = maladie rénale
kidney failure = insuffisance rénale

to outwit

se montrer plus malin que « To win the presidency he had first to outwit his rivals »


[person] gavé (=full up) « But you're just so stuffed you won't be able to drink anything. »
  to be stuffed full =  être bourré  à craquer « his wallet was stuffed full. »

to meddle

s'en mêler « It's best not to meddle. »
to meddle in sth = se mêler de qch « What had induced the woman to meddle in his affairs? »
to meddle with sth = se mêler de qch « I dared not meddle with my wife's plans. »


réaction violente « There will be a huge public backlash if the match is called off.  The Government will face a backlash from unions. »

head over heels

« to fall head over heels in love » = tomber éperduement amoureux


mixeur « Put all the ingredients in a blender. »


faux jeton, tire-au-flanc : « John called in sick to work again today. He's such a flake. » « Mary said she would do the research for our project, but it's been a week and she hasn't done a thing. She's such a flake. »


(jolie) fille, gonzesse, petite amie « Yo shorty, it's your birthday »


rusé, malin « on their second raid they were more cunning. »  
[device, idea] astucieux
astuce , ruse (péj.) « they achieved their aim by stealth and cunning. »


étreinte, prise
serrer fort the boy's mother was sitting clutching a handkerchief.   
to clutch at sth  = se cramponner à qch Ella stood outside, vainly trying to clutch at the door handle
  (fig)  sauter sur qch She would have clutched at any excuse to miss school for the day.   
[+car] embrayage (clutch pedal) « Gently release the clutch pedal until you feel the car trying to pull away. »


insistant « a pushy, aggressive door-to-door salesman. » « We didn't want to seem to be pushy parents. »

to pass along

faire passer « he lit a joint a passed it along. » « It was the first time that this magazine was passed along to me. »

by hook or by crook

coûte que coûte « I'll get there by hook or crook. »

off the hook

trop cool « That party was off the hook! » (=off the chain « this party is really off the chain!! »)
to get off the hook = se tirer d'affaire « Government officials accused of bribery and corruption often get off the hook. »   
to let sb off the hook = laisser qn s'en tirer « the Opposition has let the government off the hook »
  to take the phone off the hook = décrocher le téléphone


implacable « the pressure now was relentless.  The relentless heat of the desert. » (=la chaleur implacable du désert).
[rain] continuel(le)  
  [person, enemy, pursuit] implacable (=never giving up) « He was relentless in his pursuit of quality » « He was the most relentless enemy I have ever known »

to screen

protéger « I moved in front of her trying to screen her.  The house is screened from the road by high hedges. She screened her eyes from the wind. »
[+film] projeter , diffuser « The series is likely to be screened in January. »
  [+candidates, employees] contrôler « The Secret Service screens several hundred people every week »    « women screened for breast cancer »
[+telephone calls] filtrer « I employ a secretary to screen my telephone calls »


temps d'arrêt « I was so tired, I decided I needed to have a little downtime. »

off the top of my head

de tête « off the top of my head, here are a few examples » (=de tête, voici quelques exemples).
= OTTOMH « I don't remember details ottomh, but... »

off the record

officieux « The minister's remarks were strictly off-the-record. »

boarding school

pensionnat « They sent their children to boarding school. » 


  [car, jacket, bag] qui a du chic, qui a de la classe (=stylish)
[place] chouette « Bridgeport was a pretty nifty place »
[gadget, tool] astucieux « this nifty Add-On lets you search our full database from your browser » « a couple of nifty tricks that I've seen scattered around the Internet. »


bousculade  « There was a mad scramble for the back seat. » (=il y eut une folle bousculade pour la place du fond.)
lutte « in their scramble for top spot in the charts » (=dans leur lutte pour la première place au hit-parade).
the scramble for jobs = la ruée sur les emplois
avancer péniblement « Tourists were scrambling over the rocks. » (= les touristes avançaient péniblement dans les rochers).
to scramble for   [+door, exit] se ruer vers « I scrambled for the door »
to scramble for   [+tickets, shares, prize] s'arracher « More than three million fans are expected to scramble for tickets. »
[+signal, message] brouiller
[+eggs] brouiller
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