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avoir du plomb dans l’aile

“Avoir du plomb dans l’aile” is a metaphorical French expression that translates literally to “to have lead in the wing”. The expression means to be in a bad away. It originates from an 18th-century hunting expression relating to injured birds falling after having been shot. Here are some more translations:

  • to be in a bad state
  • to be in bad shape

Here’s an example sentence:

Suite à la crise récente et plusieurs erreurs, la carriere du president a du plomb dans l’aile. Following the recent crisis and several mistakes, the president’s career is in a bad way.

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David Issokson

David Issokson is a lifelong language enthusiast. His head is swimming with words and sounds as he speaks over six languages. Of all the languages he speaks, he's the most passionate about French! David has helped hundreds of students to improve their French in his private online lessons. When procrastinating working on FrenchLearner, David enjoys his time skiing and hiking in Teton Valley, Idaho.

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