Tuesday, October 12, 2010

French word of the day: soupir

Def: sigh (to sigh (v) is soupirer)

A couple weeks ago, a few of us were sitting around a café table; two Americans, two Italians, an Aussie and a Frenchman. And, of all things, we were talking about the word “sigh” and all its meanings.

Sometimes you sigh out of exasperation (but, jamais, in Paris!).

Or you sigh out of pleasure. Utter bliss. (Oh, Mon dieu…)

You sigh when you’re tired… a little harder if you’re tired and frustrated.

Sighing often goes hand-in-hand with being sad. Wah. Je suis triste!

A nice sigh is out of passion or admiration.

You can sigh just to catch your breath. Or after you’ve been startled.

It’s actually a modest but loaded word, that little sigh.


  1. You never sigh out of exasperation in Paris?!?
    Clearly I need a little of your American optimism! I've got that little Gallic puff of exasperation down to a science - especially on a strike day!

    La Mom
    An American Mom in Paris

  2. Love your french lessons. I'll be working for a french company (L'Oreal) full-time (in August) after graduation and really need to learn these things!! :)