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Passerelles ep. 1, Quiz 62: revenons au sujet

    What do “revenons au sujet”, “mettent en lumière”, and “plusieurs choses” mean? Hear all three in today’s quiz. Dive into some of the nuance and learn how one related phrase uses “sheep”. Curious? Take on today’s brief quiz.

    This clip is from Passerelles Episode 1. Listen and fill in what you hear below. Read more and find a translation below. Listen to the full episode here.

    8 seconds, 17 words

    This audio sample and transcription is from Passerelles ep. 1. We do not own the content. Listen to the entire episode

    . '.
    revenonssujetqui.théories 'subjectiflumière.
    revenonssujetquiintéresse.théories l'âgesubjectifmettentlumièreplusieurschoses.

    Let’s get back to the topic

    What’s opening up for you with this clip?

    The snippet in English

    Find a translation of this snippet here, how much of this did you hear?

    Mais revenons au sujet qui nous intéresse. Les théories de l’âge subjectif mettent en lumière plusieurs choses.

    But let’s get back to the subject at hand. Theories of subjective age highlight several things.

    The above translation from Deepl. Source

    What does “revenons au sujet” mean?

    The phrase “revenons au sujet” directly translates to “let’s get back to the subject” or “let’s return to the topic” in English. It’s used to steer a conversation back to the original topic or main point after it has drifted into unrelated areas. In both formal and informal contexts, this phrase can be useful for maintaining the focus of a discussion.


    • “Nous nous égarons; revenons au sujet.” (We are getting off track; let’s get back to the subject.)
    • “C’est intéressant, mais revenons au sujet principal.” (That’s interesting, but let’s return to the main topic.)

    When to Use:

    Use “revenons au sujet” when you sense that a discussion is veering off-course and you want to bring it back to the main issue or topic at hand. It’s a polite yet effective way to refocus a conversation without seeming rude or dismissive of the intervening discussion.

    Other Phrases:

    Other ways to convey a similar sentiment include:

    • “Revenons à nos moutons” (Let’s get back to our sheep), a more idiomatic way to say “let’s return to the subject.”
    • “Retournons à la question” (Let’s go back to the question)

    Cultural Notes:

    In French discussions, it’s common for conversations to wander, especially in social settings. However, in formal contexts like business meetings or academic settings, sticking to the agenda is generally valued, making “revenons au sujet” a handy phrase.

    Fun Fact:

    The idiomatic phrase “Revenons-en à nos moutons” comes from a medieval French play and is still used today to humorously steer conversations back to the main topic. It literally means “Let’s get back to our sheep,” a historical nod to the storyline where the main characters were preoccupied with finding stolen sheep.

    So, the next time you’re in a French conversation that’s gone on a tangent, “revenons au sujet” is your go-to phrase for gracefully steering things back on course.

    What does “mettent en lumière” mean?

    The French phrase “mettent en lumière” is an idiomatic expression that literally translates to “put in the light” in English. The expression is often used to mean “highlight,” “illuminate,” or “bring to attention.” It’s employed to stress the importance of a certain aspect, feature, or detail that might otherwise be overlooked or underappreciated. The term could also be used in journalistic contexts to signify that new facts or perspectives have been revealed.


    • “Ces statistiques mettent en lumière les inégalités dans le système éducatif.” (These statistics highlight the inequalities in the educational system.)
    • “Son dernier film met en lumière les problèmes sociaux que nous ignorons souvent.” (His latest movie illuminates the social issues that we often ignore.)

    When to Use:

    You would use “mettent en lumière” when you want to emphasize that something is being made clear or visible, whether it’s a social issue, a trend, or an overlooked detail. The phrase can be adapted according to the subject and tense: “met en lumière” (he/she/it highlights), “mettrons en lumière” (we will highlight), etc.

    Other Phrases:

    If you’re looking for other ways to express a similar sentiment, consider:

    • “soulignent” (underline)
    • “révèlent” (reveal)
    • “font ressortir” (bring out)

    Cultural Notes:

    In French discussions, especially in academic or professional settings, “mettre en lumière” is often used to lend weight to particular points or to signal the importance of newly introduced information. It suggests a deeper level of insight or scrutiny.

    In Summary:

    “Mettent en lumière” highlights or reveals important details or insights. It adds weight and significance to what’s being discussed.

    What does “plusieurs choses” mean?

    The French term “plusieurs choses” directly translates to “several things” or “multiple things” in English. It’s a straightforward phrase used to refer to a variety of items, ideas, actions, or circumstances, without specifying exactly how many.


    • “Il y a plusieurs choses à considérer avant de prendre une décision.” (There are several things to consider before making a decision.)
    • “Elle a acheté plusieurs choses pendant son voyage.” (She bought several things during her trip.)

    When to Use:

    Use “plusieurs choses” when you want to indicate that there are multiple elements involved, without going into the specific number or details. It’s a neutral phrase that can be used in both formal and informal contexts.

    Related Phrases:

    • “beaucoup de choses” (a lot of things)
    • “quelques choses” (a few things)
    • “certaines choses” (certain things)

    Cultural Notes:

    In French, the term “plusieurs” is a commonly used quantifier and is not confined to any specific cultural or social situation. However, the use of “choses” (things) can be perceived as somewhat vague if the context doesn’t provide additional clarifying information. For instance, “J’ai appris plusieurs choses aujourd’hui” (I learned several things today) could prompt the listener to ask for more details about what exactly was learned.

    In Summary:

    The phrase “plusieurs choses” is simple and direct, used to describe an unspecified number of items, thoughts, actions, or circumstances. It’s useful for providing a general idea of multiplicity without needing to quantify or elaborate unless necessary.

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    What do “revenons au sujet”, “mettent en lumière”, and “plusieurs choses” mean? Hear all three in today’s quiz. Dive into some of the nuance and learn how one related phrase uses “sheep”. Curious? Take on today’s brief quiz.

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