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Ailleurs (Elsewhere) vs. D’ailleurs (For That Matter)

Ailleurs (Elsewhere) vs. D’ailleurs (For That Matter)

In French, there are two words that are practically the same but have two totally different meanings: ailleurs (elsewhere) and d’ailleurs (for that matter). This post will explore the differences between these two words with example sentences and audio. Keep reading.

ailleurs / d’ailleurs

elsewhere / for that matter

Ailleurs (elsewhere) vs. d'ailleurs (for that matter)


Simply put, ailleurs translates to “elsewhere” or “somewhere else”. For example:

Va ailleurs ! Tu ne peux plus rester ici.

Go somewhere else! You can’t stay here anymore.

The expression avoir la tête ailleurs means “to have your head elsewhere”, “to have your mind on other things” or “to be in your own little world”.

Je pense qu’il a la tête ailleurs.

I think he’s got his mind on other things.

A similar expression is être dans la lune (Literally: to be in the moon).


Now let’s have a look at d’ailleurs. As mentioned above, d’ailleurs has a completely different meaning, with several translations including “for that matter”, “by the way”, “incidentally” and “by and by”. For example:

Vous avez fait beauoup de progrès. D’ailleurs, on espère que vous continuerez à faire des progrès !

You made a lot of progress. For that matter, we hope you’ll continue making progress!

Julie est très belle, et elle est très intelligente d’ailleurs !

Julie is very beautiful and very intelligent for that matter.

Moi non plus, d’ailleurs.

Me neither, for that matter.


Et voilà ! Now you have a much clearer understanding of ailleurs vs. d’ailleurs. Now have a look at our post covering the word d’accord (okay, agreed), another French word that can cause confusion.

Example of d'ailleurs (for that matter) in French.

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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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