Reading time: < 1 minute

French expression ‘Se mettre sur son 31’ explained

by | Dec 30, 2022 | Learn French

It’s time for the weekly post to help you to improve your French!

Bonjour à tous (hello everyone)!

I hope you all enjoyed the holidays. Now, it is time to think of New Year’s Eve. So, I chose an expression that we use very often for this occasion: ‘Se mettre sur son 31’.

The closest translation in English is ‘To be dressed up to the nines’

Why do we use the expression ‘Se mettre sur son 31’?

The first and most common theory is that this expression comes from a distortion of the word ‘trentain’.

Which represented a very refined cloth used in the Middle Ages. Made up of thirty times a hundred threads and intended for luxury clothing.

As trentain was only worn by wealthy people, the fabric was not well known to the rest of the population. Who would have distorted its name by pronouncing it ‘trente-et-un’ – which means the number thirty one.

At the time, ‘se mettre sur’ meant ‘to put on oneself’. This is how the popular expression ‘to dress up’ came about. Meaning ‘to get ready for a special occasion’.

Et vous, allez-vous vous mettre sur votre 31 demain soir? J’attends vos réponses 🥳🍾

Josh

Josh

Salut, I’m Josh! I love skateboarding, cooking, photography and learning – even though I was a terrible student back in the days. Moved to France with Robin in 2018 and we have together been working in marketing for over a decade.

We have more articles for you

7 Funny Food-Related Expressions in French

by | Jun 25, 2023 | Learn French | 0 Comments

Learning a new language can be a challenging yet rewarding experience. While mastering grammar rules and expanding your vocabulary is crucial, it’s also essential to...

Fruity French Expressions explained

8 Fruity French expressions explained – don’t be fooled!

by | Jan 13, 2023 | Learn French | 0 Comments

Today we are using the names of vegetables and fruits for commonly used French Expressions. But don’t be fooled – this is what people mean!

Difference explained between Mademoiselle and Madame

What is the difference between Mademoiselle and Madame

by | Jan 11, 2023 | Learn French | 0 Comments

Ever wondered what is the difference between ‘mademoiselle’ and ‘madame’ – however ‘mademoiselle’ is no longer acceptable. This is why!

In January we eat the Galette des Rois! And we have a common expression for these festive months - let me explain 'Manger comme quatre'

‘Manger comme quatre’ expression explained

by | Jan 7, 2023 | Learn French | 0 Comments

In January we eat the Galette des Rois! And we have a common expression for these festive months – let me explain ‘Manger comme quatre’

It's almost New Year's Eve and I chose an expression to explain that we use very often for this occasion ‘Se mettre sur son 31’!

French expression ‘Se mettre sur son 31’ explained

by | Dec 30, 2022 | Learn French | 0 Comments

It’s almost New Year’s Eve and I chose an expression to explain that we use very often for this occasion ‘Se mettre sur son 31’!