not bad, nice job; quite a bit
You undoubtedly learned the French expression pas mal
, meaning "not bad," as a possible response to the questions ça va ?
and comment allez-vous ?
But pas mal !
can also be used as an exclamation of approval, along the lines of "nice job, way to go!"
There's also another, completely different way to use pas mal
: in reference to a "fair amount/number" or "quite a bit" of something. It can be used with nouns, in which case it must be followed by de
, as well as with verbs. Note that there is no ne
to go with the pas
, and that de
follows the rules of other adverbs of quantity
, meaning that even in front of plural nouns it's usually de
Tu l'as fait en dix minutes ? Pas mal !
You did it in 10 minutes? Not bad / Way to go!
Il gagne pas mal d'argent.
He earns quite a bit of money.
J'ai pas mal de questions.
I have quite a few / a fair number of questions.
Nous avons discuté pas mal d'idées.
We discussed quite a few ideas.
Elle a pas mal voyagé.
She has traveled quite a bit.
Vous allez voir pas mal là-bas.
You're going to see quite a bit over there.
Post your comments about the French expression pas mal
on my French blog
- just hit "comments" at the bottom of the post.