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Transfert s01e22, Quiz 43: ça fait 20 ans

    Improve your ear for fast spoken French with these phrases about time: “ça fait 20 ans”, “j’en avais 35”, and “il en avait 27”. How much of this clip can you hear? Set your level and fill in the blanks as you listen. Use French in real life to improve your French understanding!

    Learn French with a podcast snippet! This clip is is from Transfert s01ep22. We do not own the content. Listen to the entire episode here.

    9 seconds, 24 words
    ,,, '.
    Çafait,euh,avait, j'enavaisenavait.
    Çafaitansannée,euhaoût,avaitans, j'enavaispetitfrèreenavait.

    The above audio sample and transcription is from Transfert s01ep22. We do not own the content. Listen to the entire episode here.

    it’s been 20 years

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    The snippet in English

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

    Ça fait 20 ans cette année, euh le 25 août, il avait 62 ans, j’en avais 35 et mon petit frère en avait 27.

    It was 20 years ago this year, on August 25, he was 62, I was 35 and my little brother was 27.

    The above translation from Deepl

    What does “ça fait 20 ans” mean?

    The phrase “ça fait 20 ans” translates to “it’s been 20 years” in English. It is used to indicate that 20 years have passed since a particular event or since a certain point in time.

    Usage and Context:

    • Marking Time: This phrase is commonly used to mark the passage of time or to signify the duration since an event occurred.
    • Anniversaries or Milestones: Often used in the context of anniversaries, milestones, or reflecting on significant changes over a two-decade period.

    Examples:

    1. Reflecting on Past Events: “Ça fait 20 ans que nous nous sommes rencontrés.” (It’s been 20 years since we met.)
    2. Noting Changes or Anniversaries: “Ça fait 20 ans que j’habite dans cette ville.” (I’ve been living in this city for 20 years.)

    Nuance:

    • Sense of Duration: “Ça fait 20 ans” often carries a sense of duration and can bring attention to the changes or developments that have occurred over that time span.
    • Emotional or Reflective Tone: This phrase can have an emotional or reflective tone, especially when used in personal contexts to discuss life events or changes.

    Cultural Notes:

    • Common in Conversational French: In French, marking significant periods such as decades is common in conversation. This reflects a cultural emphasis on acknowledging the passage of time and its impact on people’s lives.

    Summary:

    “Ça fait 20 ans” means “it’s been 20 years” in French. It’s used to denote the passage of 20 years since an event or starting point, often in the context of anniversaries, milestones, or reflecting on significant life changes. The phrase is commonly used in both casual and formal contexts, carrying a sense of duration and often a reflective or emotional tone.

    What does “j’en avais 35” mean?

    “J’en avais 35” translates to “I was 35 (years old)” in English. This phrase is a way of stating one’s age at a specific time in the past.

    Usage and Context:

    • Referring to Age: The phrase is commonly used when someone is talking about their age at a particular moment in the past. “En” in this context refers back to a previously mentioned or understood time or situation.
    • Personal Narratives or Stories: It’s often used in personal stories or narratives to provide context about one’s age during past events.

    Examples:

    • In a conversation about past events: “Quand j’ai déménagé à Paris, j’en avais 35.” (When I moved to Paris, I was 35.)
    • Reflecting on a life experience: “Lorsque j’ai commencé ce projet, j’en avais 35.” (When I started this project, I was 35.)

    Nuance:

    • Specificity and Reference: The use of “en” adds specificity, indicating that the age of 35 is linked to a particular time or event previously mentioned or understood in the conversation.

    Cultural Notes:

    • Contextual Conversations: In French, providing age context is common in storytelling or personal accounts. The language allows for concise ways to link age to specific events or periods in one’s life.

    Summary:

    “J’en avais 35” means “I was 35 (years old)” in French, used to specify one’s age at a particular past time. The “en” refers back to a specific time or situation, making this phrase a common element in personal stories or narratives where age is relevant to the context.

    What does “en avait 27” mean?

    “En avait 27” translates to “was 27 (years old)” in English. It is used to describe someone’s age at a specific point in the past, with “en” referring back to a previously mentioned or understood time or event.

    Usage and Context:

    • Referring to Age in the Past: This phrase is typically used in narratives or discussions about past events, indicating the age of a person at that time.
    • Linking Age to Specific Events: The use of “en” in “en avait 27” implies a connection to a certain event, period, or situation that has been previously mentioned or is clear from the context.

    Examples:

    • In a conversation about someone’s past: “Quand il a obtenu son premier emploi, il en avait 27.” (When he got his first job, he was 27.)
    • Reflecting on a historical figure: “Lors de la publication de son premier roman, elle en avait 27.” (At the time of publishing her first novel, she was 27.)

    Nuance:

    • Specificity to Time or Event: The phrase is specific and ties the age of 27 to a particular moment or event in the past, providing context and detail in a narrative.

    Cultural Notes:

    • Historical and Biographical Contexts: In French, it’s common to specify ages in relation to key events or periods, particularly in historical or biographical contexts. This adds clarity and depth to stories and discussions about people’s lives.

    Summary:

    “En avait 27” means “was 27 (years old)” in French, and is used to specify someone’s age in relation to a specific past event or time period. The use of “en” links the age directly to a particular context, making this phrase useful in narratives, historical accounts, and discussions where age at a certain time is relevant.

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    Improve your ear for fast spoken French with these phrases about time: “ça fait 20 ans”, “j’en avais 35”, and “il en avait 27”. How much of this clip can you hear? Set your level and fill in the blanks as you listen. Use French in real life to improve your French understanding!

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