Quelle mouche t’a piqué ?

Quelle mouche t'a piqué ?
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Informal French Expression

Meaning What’s the matter with you?
Literally Which fly bit you?
Register informal
Pronunciation [kehl moosh tah pee kay]
IPA   [kɛl muʃ ta pi ke]

Usage notes: Flies are annoying, especially when they bite, and they can also be hard to spot. So the informal French expression quelle mouche t’a piqué ? is a logical way to ask someone why he looks or is acting annoyed when there’s no obvious reason for it.

Variation: Quelle mouche te pique ?

Synonymous expressions

  • Qu’est-ce que tu as ?
  • Qu’est-ce qui ne vas pas ?
  • Qu’est-ce qui te prend ?
  • Qu’est-ce qui t’arrive ?
  • Qu’est-ce qu’il y a ?
  • Qu’est-ce qui ne tourne pas rond ? (informal)

English equivalents

  • What’s bothering you?
  • What’s bugging you?
  • What’s eating you?
  • What’s gotten into you?
  • What’s the matter with you?
  • What’s up with you?
  • What’s wrong with you?
  • What’s your problem?

 You can ask the same question of other people by using a different direct object pronoun:

Quelle mouche l’a piqué ?    What’s bugging him?
Quelle mouche l’a piquée ?    What’s bugging her?
Quelle mouche vous a piqué(s) ?    What’s bugging you?
Quelle mouche les a piqués ?    What’s bugging them?

Or by putting a noun at the end:

Quelle mouche a piqué ta sœur ?    What’s bugging your sister?
Quelle mouche a piqué les élèves ?    What’s bugging the students?

 Related lessons

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