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avoir un chat dans la gorge

“Avoir un chat dans la gorge” is a metaphoric French expression that translates literally to “to have a cat in your throat”. The English equivalent is simply:

  • to have a frog in your throat
  • to have a rasping voice
  • to have a croaky voice

A French-to-French translation is “être enroué” or “être éraillé“, which means to be hoarse or husky.

  • Apres avoir fait une dizaine de discours, l’homme politique avait un chat dans la gorge. After having given around ten speeches, the politician was hoarse.
  • Pardon, j’ai du mal à parler. J’ai un chat dans la gorge. Sorry, I’m having a hard time speaking. I have a frog in my throat.

Watch Johan explain this expression:

Video resource: Français Authentique

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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 his site,, David enjoys his time skiing and hiking in Teton Valley, Idaho.

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