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Lune de miel

French expressions analyzed and explained


La lune de miel
Grant Faint / Getty Images
Expression: lune de miel

Pronunciation: [loon d(eu) myehl]

Meaning: honeymoon

Literal translation: moon of honey

Register: normal

Notes: The French expression la lune de miel technically refers to the lunar month (29 days) immediately following a wedding, when the couple is madly in love and everything is wonderful (at least in theory). Perhaps due to the influence of English, lune de miel has come to mean the trip newlyweds take right after the ceremony, but since this "honeymoon" usually takes place during and is therefore part of the "moon of honey," the more accurate French expression for the trip is voyage de noces.

Like the English expression "honeymoon," la lune de miel can be used figuratively when talking about the high point / best moment of a situation. La lune de miel can also refer to the early stages of an illness, such as diabetes or Parkinson's disease, when the symptoms are still mild - in English, the "honeymoon period."


   Nous sommes partis en Italie pour notre lune de miel.
   We went to Italy for our honeymoon.

   Après la dispute avec notre nouveau chef, la lune de miel était finie.
   After the argument with our new boss, the honeymoon was over.

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