C’est pas tes oignons !

C'est pas tes oignons !
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Informal French Expression

Meaning None of your business
Literally It’s not your onions
Register informal
Pronunciation French sound files [say pa tay zuh nyo(n)]
IPA   [se pa te zɔ ŋɔ̃]

Usage notes: The French expression c’est pas* tes oignons means "it’s none of your business," but since it’s informal, "none of your beeswax!" is a better translation.

It’s odd that oignons is equivalent in this and related expressions** to affaires. In English, “beeswax” has a certain similarity in sound to “business,” but oignons and affaires sound nothing alike, so why oignons rather than, say, artichauts or asperges?

Par exemple…

Je te dis pas – c’est pas tes oignons !   I’m not telling you – it’s none of your business!
– Qui était à la fête ?
– C’est pas tes oignons !
  – Who was at the party?
– None of your beeswax!

* C’est pas is the informal equivalent of ce n’est paslearn more.

** Related expressions

  • C’est tes oignons – It is your business/concern, It concerns you
  • Mêle-toi de tes oignons ! – Mind your own business/beeswax!
  • Occupe-toi de tes oignons ! – Mind your own business/beeswax!
  • T’inquiète ! – None of your business!
  • mettre son grain de selto stick one’s nose in, to butt in

 More French expressions with food

Related lessons

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C'est pas tes oignons

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