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Do you know these chilling expressions?

2022-01-24T06:09:37.753Z

In this icy period, Le Figaro returns to these absurd expressions of the French language. It's freezing cold. For the past few months, we've been freezing, we've curdled our cheeses, it's cold as a witch's nipple. Did you notice it? The French language is full of expressions to talk about rain and good weather. While our many layers of clothing attempt to fend off the cold, pungent, and treacherous, our vocabulary also bears witness to the falling mercury. The editorial staff offers yo



It's freezing cold.

For the past few months, we've been freezing, we've curdled our cheeses, it's cold as a witch's nipple.

Did you notice it?

The French language is full of expressions to talk about rain and good weather.

While our many layers of clothing attempt to fend off the cold, pungent, and treacherous, our vocabulary also bears witness to the falling mercury.

The editorial staff offers you an anthology of these often comical, sometimes daring, and sometimes old-fashioned formulas.

We curd each other's wheels

The expression also exists in the form

"to curdle the loaves"

.

In both cases, the language is little chastised.

In slang, the

"millstones"

are nothing more than...

"buttocks"

, just like the

"loaves"

.

In the singular, the word is synonymous with

"tooth"

.

How did we go from a term that designates a "flat and massive cylinder, used to grind, to grind" to a posterior?

The mystery hovers.

The

“millstone”

is prized by the green language, since it also designates a

“mobylette”

or a

“motorcycle”

, notes the Treasury of the French language.

It's cold as a witch's nipple

Borrowed from the English

"cold as a witch's tit"

, this formula has its origins in the United States.

What connection can there be between a witch and biting cold?

It is said that in the 17th century, these women with evil power were depicted as having frozen skin and blood.

It is in reference to this detail that the cold was compared to a

"witch's nipple"

, supposedly frozen.

According to legend, these witches were identified as such thanks to the singular mark that this nipple left on their bodies.

It's chilly

A piece of sun finally appears.

But already an unpleasant wind is chasing him away and the clouds are piling up.

"It's chilly

," say to yourself, raising the collar of your coat.

This word with its old-fashioned charm comes to us from afar.

According to the dictionary, we borrowed it from the Walloon

frisque, “cold”

, itself coming from the flamingo

frisch,

that is to say

“a little cold”

.

“Frisquet”

arrives in France in the 19th century to designate this

“little sharp and pungent cold”

, which we hate so much.

It's freezing cold

Here is another formula whose use is becoming rare.

This is what makes its charm.

But beware.

If you are informed, before arriving in a country house, that it is

"freezing to the bone"

, arm yourself with turtlenecks, sweaters, scarves and lined gloves.

You risk losing a toe or two in the adventure.

The metaphor indicates that the mercury has sunk so low that the stones themselves cannot resist it.

A cold of duck, of wolf

Animals occupy a special place in our idiomatic formulas.

And not necessarily in a flattering context.

It

's freezing cold

when, chilled, our only salvation is to find the slightest source of heat.

Why is the duck associated with this unpleasant feeling?

Quite simply in reference to this moment when the hunter waits for the waterfowl to fly away from the frozen lakes, his feet and hands as hard as marble.

The

“wolf cold”

would come from Franche-Comté, where the roofs of the houses are built with a

“wolf tile”

.

When it began to crack, it was the signal for the inhabitants that winter was coming, and that the wolves would come down from their mountains to the village to feed.

Source: lefigaro

All news articles on 2022-01-24

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