Find the top 11 essential Lyon expressions!

When we talk about Lyon, we often think of its gastronomy, its traboules and its historical heritage.

But the city of Les Gones has much more to offer, especially in terms of language! Discover our selection of 12 essential Lyon expressions to fully immerse yourself in the local culture.

1. gone

The expression “gone” refers to a young boy or girl from Lyon. The word comes from Franco-Provençal and is used affectionately by Lyonnais to talk about children and teenagers.

2. Phenote

Like Gon, “fenot” is a Lyon expression designating a young girl or woman. Used with tenderness, it testifies to the residents’ attachment to local traditions.

  • move : Use these two words in your discussions with Lyonnais to quickly integrate into their community.

3. Trabouler

The verb “trabouler” refers to the famous traboules, these secret passages that cross the buildings of Old Lyon and the Croix-Rousse district. This means moving from one street to another using these narrow and picturesque corridors.

4. Gnafron

“Gnafron” is an emblematic character of Lyon puppet theatre, often associated with the Guignol. He is the epitome of a bon vivant who loves wine and good food. This expression is sometimes used to describe a person who loves to party and enjoy the joys of life.

5. Kakeber

In the Lyon language “cacaber” means to lament or complain. If you hear someone say they are “pooping,” they are expressing displeasure or irritation.

6. stopper

“Bouchon” is not only a traffic jam in Lyon, it is also the name given to traditional restaurants where they serve Local culinary specialties, Don’t miss trying these friendly establishments during your stay.

  • Advice : Often crowded with traffic jams, remember to make a reservation to ensure a table!

7. Pochtroner

The expression “pochtröner” means excessive drinking or hanging out at a bar. However, be careful not to overdo it, as Lyonnais love sociability, but they also respect traditions and their city.

8. Nonsense

The word “hogwash” is used to express disdain or contempt for something. If a Lyonnais tells you that something is “nonsense”, it is because he does not consider it important or worthy of interest.

9. Machon

“Machon” is a Lyonnais meal usually taken in the morning, usually consisting of cold meat and cheese accompanied by a glass of wine. It is often shared among friends or colleagues to get together and chat.

10. Coil

“Reil” refers to the face in the Lyon language. You may hear this expression in phrases like “do a funny face,” which means to have a funny or strange expression on your face.

11. Gadin

A “gadin” is a fall, often spectacular and amusing to witnesses. If you attend such an event, don’t hesitate to laugh with the Lyonnais, as self-deprecation is an integral part of their culture.

Now that you know these 12 Lyon expressions, you’re ready to immerse yourself in the culture of this magnificent city. Don’t hesitate to use them during your stay to live an authentic and enriching experience.

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