Oohlala, how very onomatopoeic!

While scratching my head for an un-lofty name for this humble blog I got side-tracked into making a list of my favorite “words that sound like what they describe” (i.e. onomatopoeia) in French. A little Googling and dictionary-flipping added further to my glee. I hereby reaffirm that French is a delightful language with many many more auditory possibilities than English.

Some of my favorites:

froufrou (“froo froo”) – just sounds frilly doesn’t it?

chouchou (“shoe shoe”) – teacher’s pet

miam miam (“myahm myahm”) – they’re French, they subsist on carbs and fats daily and stay thin, seems appropriate that their word for “yum yum” is somehow the opposite of what we’d expect too

brouhaha (“brew ha ha”) – a noisy hubbub

bric-a-brac – my very favorite

scrogneugneu (“scroh new new”) – an old grouch, can’t you just see the surly grimace?

glou glou (“glue glue”) – glug glug

nunuche (“noo noosh”) – silly

truc (“trook”) – the all purpose word, literally “thingie”

rigolo – means funny, not related to gigolo

boum (“boom”) – a party

and some verbs….

chuchoter (“shoe show tay”) – to whisper

ronronner (“roo rong nay”) – to purr

grignoter (“gree nio tay”) – to nibble

and lastly…

patati et patata – so on and so forth

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