Lecciones de Francés

Temas

Getting Frustrated in French

In a previous lesson, we discussed the words finalement and enfin, which both mean "finally" but have different connotations. Now we'll look at the related phrase à la fin, which can also mean "finally," but is more aptly translated as "in the end":

 

Comme une larme à la fin de l'histoire

Like a tear at the end of the story

Caption 29, 1789: Les Amants de la Bastille Tomber dans ses yeux

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However, like enfin, which is often used as a filler word equivalent to "well," "I mean," "in any case," or "come on," à la fin also has a more colloquial meaning. It's used to express frustration, when you've had enough of something and want it to be done with, or when you're fed up with someone's behavior:

 

Tu deviens ridicule à la fin avec cette histoire.

You're becoming ridiculous with this story at this point.

Caption 11, Le Jour où tout a basculé Mon histoire d'amour est impossible - Part 5

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Mais qu'est-ce que t'as à la fin avec ce garçon?

But what is it with you and this boy, ultimately?

Caption 16, Le Jour où tout a basculé Mon histoire d'amour est impossible - Part 5

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Mais arrête à la fin!

But stop it already!

Caption 58, Le Jour où tout a basculé Notre appartement est hanté - Part 6

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In this sense, à la fin overlaps with enfin, which can also be used to express frustration: 

 

Mais enfin, relève-toi!

Come on, stand up!

Caption 2, Il était une fois - les Explorateurs 15. Bruce et les sources du Nil - Part 3

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You can even use the two in the same sentence, when you're really frustrated:

 

Enfin de quoi vous parlez à la fin?

Well, what are you talking about now?

Caption 65, Le Jour où tout a basculé Notre appartement est hanté - Part 5

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Mais enfin, elle est dingue, cette histoire à la fin!

But come on, this story is crazy now!

Caption 43, Le Jour où tout a basculé Notre appartement est hanté - Part 7

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But that's not all! There's yet another word that's used informally for this purpose: encore (still, again). Patricia gives a succinct explanation of this in her video on encore and toujours:

 

Enfin le mot "encore" peut désigner l'impatience ou le mécontentement par rapport à un événement qui se répète ou continue. Par exemple, la phrase: Quoi encore?

Finally, the word "encore" can indicate impatience or dissatisfaction with regard to an event that repeats or continues. For example, the sentence: What now? [What is it now?]

Captions 17-21, Le saviez-vous? Utilisation de "encore" et "toujours" - Part 2

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Patricia also uses two phrases meaning "to be fed up with" or "to be sick/tired of" in this video—en avoir assez de and en avoir marre de:

 

Ah! Encore lui! C'est clair, ça veut dire que on en a assez de le voir. On en a marre de lui.

Ah! Him again! It's clear, it means that we're tired of seeing him. We're sick of him.

Captions 25-28, Le saviez-vous? Utilisation de "encore" et "toujours" - Part 2

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You now have all you need to vent your frustrations in French!

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