En souffrance

En souffrance
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French Expression

Meaning pending, awaiting delivery, held up
Literally in suffering
Register normal
Pronunciation [a(n) soo fra(n)s]
IPA   [ã su frãs]

Usage notes: The French expression en souffrance is a lot less painful than it sounds, as it just means “pending” or “awaiting delivery.”

On the other hand, if you’re waiting in agony for treatment, test results, or news of a loved one, en souffrance is a lot more descriptive than its English translation.

Par exemple…

Voici les dossiers en souffrance.   Here are the pending files.
Cette commande est en souffrance.   That order is held up/awaiting delivery.
Les colis sont en souffrance à l’usine.   The packages are held up at the factory.

Somewhat synonymous

  • attendu – long-awaited, expected
  • en attente – pending, on hold
  • en instance – pending
  • en suspens – suspended, in suspension
  • impayé – unpaid
  • pendant – pending

 Related verbs

 While la souffrance does generally mean "suffering," as in la souffrance physique et mentale, once it’s preceded by en it’s a faux ami.

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