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|Meaning||D-Day, the big day|
|Pronunciation||[leu zhoor zhee]|
|IPA||[lə ʒuʀ ʒi]|
Usage notes: The original meaning of the French expression le jour J is D-Day: 6 June 1944, the day the World War II Allied forces invaded Normandy, France. This is also known as the Normandy landings – le débarquement de Normandie.
The military terms le jour J and D-Day, along with l’heure H / H-hour*, indicate when an operation will occur. As you’ve guessed by now, the capital letter is just a repetition of the word: J stands for jour, D stands for day, and H stands for heure or hour.
Le jour J and, to a lesser extent, D-Day can also be used by civilians, as a figurative reference to an important event, similar to saying "the big day" in English. While jour J can be used for happy occasions like parties, D-Day is limited to events that one doesn’t look forward to, like a deadline, perhaps because it’s easy to imagine D standing for doom or disaster.
|Le 4 août, c’est le jour J.||August 4th is the big day.|
|Le jour J est enfin arrivé !||The big day is finally here!|
Synonym: le grand jour
*There’s also l’instant T – at a given moment. The T stands for temps. As far as I know, this is not used in the military, but rather physics.