Advertisement

Au contraire

  •  
  • In French, au contraire means, literally, on the contrary, and that’s exactly what this loan phrase means in English. It’s often used to mean, roughly, I beg to differ, and it usually creates a humorous or sarcastic tone.

     

    1 To 1 English native Teachers,  the best way to improve your English!
    Click here to find out more!

    Au contraire is occasionally misspelled oh contraire. But because au contraire is an informal phrase in English, the misspelling is not a huge error.

    Advertisement

    Examples

    Hairless is the norm with women? Au contraire, sir. [Salon]

    But his insecurities did not hold him back. Au contraire! They propelled him into the spotlight. [Telegraph]

    Many people assume that when they reach age 65 and sign up for Medicare, they will be taken care of … Au contraire! Medicare is not free. [Dunwoody Crier]

    Did anyone take umbrage at my audaciously superficial questions? Au contraire! The demonstrators were only too happy to talk about their sad rags and their glad rags. [Slate]

    Advertisement

    Speak Your Mind

    About Grammarist
    Contact | Privacy policy | Home
    © Copyright 2009-2014 Grammarist