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Posts Tagged ‘petit-déjeuner’

We’ve seen before on OffQc that the three meals of the day in Québec are called:

  • le déjeuner, breakfast
  • le dîner, lunch
  • le souper, supper

On the radio, though, here’s what the host said to us listeners:

C’est l’heure du lunch qui s’en vient bientôt.
Lunchtime’s coming up.

That’s lunch’s second name in Québec: le lunch.

A reader of OffQc liked this Québecois usage: la boîte à lunch, which she found in this newspaper article online. The article is called Suggestions pour la boîte à lunch, and contains suggestions of lunches kids can take to school. You can say un sac à lunch if it’s a bag.

There’s another meal that could be added to this list: le brunch. It’s a meal that occurs between breakfast + lunch.

In advertising especially, you might notice the typically Québécois terms are sometimes not used. Here’s what’s on the back cover of an Ikea catalogue that showed up in my mailbox:

Petit-déjeuner au lit… comme ça, sans raison.
Breakfast in bed… just because.

Rather than calling breakfast in bed déjeuner au lit like they did in this TVA article, the Ikea magazine uses petit-déjeuner au lit.

Here’s how the TVA article used déjeuner au lit:

Vous cherchez à gâter maman à l’occasion de la fête des mères? Pourquoi ne pas lui préparer un décadent déjeuner au lit pour débuter sa journée en beauté?
Want to spoil Mother on Mother’s Day? Why not make her a decadent breakfast in bed so she can get her day off to a great start?

How do you say things like to have breakfast, to have supper, etc.? You can use the verb forms of the words (dîner, souper…). In #451, we saw:

Vous avez pas encore soupé.
You haven’t had supper yet.

Ça vous dérange pas qu’ils soupent avec nous?
Is it okay if they stay for supper? have supper with us?

You can also say things like aller souper, aller dîner, aller bruncher, etc. In #991, we saw:

aller souper au restaurant
to go out for supper

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Remember the Mansfield gym with their Fuck the excuses posters? Or how about the Be better than your best excuse ones? They’ve got some new posters outside the gym now, these ones suggesting reasons to work out:

Je le fais pour le gâteau double chocolat après le souper!
I do it for the double chocolate cake after supper!

Je le fais pour rester jeune et continuer à jouer avec mes enfants!
I do it to stay young and keep playing with my kids!

Je le fais pour pouvoir encore le faire quand j’aurai 85 ans!
I do it so I’ll still be able to do it when I’m 85 years old!

In the first sign, we’ve got the word souper. Do you remember what the three meals of the day are called in Québec?

le déjeuner, breakfast
le dîner, lunch
le souper, supper

For some (but not all) francophones elsewhere in the world, the three meals are called le petit déjeuner, le déjeuner, le dîner instead. This is the case for Parisians. The Québécois usages aren’t limited to Québec. They’re also used in Belgium and Switzerland.

The Québécois usage of déjeuner for breakfast instead of lunch makes sense. Le jeûne is a period of fasting (not eating). On jeûne through the night, and on déjeune in the morning at the déjeuner. The déjeuner breaks the jeûne.

English and Spanish also use the equivalent of déjeuner: “breakfast” breaks the fast, and desayuno breaks the ayuno.

In addition to le dîner, lunch is also called le lunch in Québec. Une boîte à lunch is a lunchbox. Sur mon heure de lunch means “on my lunch break,” like at work.

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