8 French Colloquial Terms and Expressions with Arabic Influence

Did you know that some French slang expressions have Arabic influences? You’ll hear most of them from French millennials. We’ve listed some of them below.

  1. “Je kiff cette meuf!”

This phrase is usually said to express interest to a certain woman. In English, it translates to “I’m deeply attracted to her” or “I really love/like this girl.” Kiff, the Arabic term which means “to enjoy” or “a state of happiness,” is used by some French millennials to replace the terms ‘like’ and ‘love.’ In Arab countries, the term Kiff is also used to describe the mix of tobacco and hashish.  On the other hand, the term “meuf” came from “une meuf” which is a French term for woman.

  1. Chouf!

This Arabic word warns someone “lookout” or tells someone “to see” something. French millennials use this term for the same meaning.

  1. Khey / Kho / Khoya

These words mean “my brother” in Arabic. In French slang, they mean “bro” or “dude.”

  1. “Oh la hchouma!”

In English, this phrase translates to “This is embarrassing!” The word “hchouma” came from the Arabic word “hechma” which means embarrassing.

  1. J’ai trop le seum.

In Arabic, “seum” means” venom.” French men adopted the term and used it to express disgust or sadness. The phrase means “I’m so annoyed,” or “I’m so sad.”

  1. Salut, sahbi!

The Arabic word “sahib” means “my friend.” In French slang, it somewhat means “my homie.” If we will use French context, this phrase translates to “Hi, my homie.”

  1. Le maboul!

“Maboul” was derived from the Arabic word “mahbūl” which means “crazy.” In French, this phrase is said as an insult. It means “a loony” or “a crackpot.”

  1. J’ai pas bezef d’ argent.

The French slang “bezef” came from the Arabic word “bezzaf” which means “a lot.” However, in French, the term is often used negatively. They use it as “not much” or “not many.” The phrase above means “I don’t have a lot of money.”

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