D'ailleurs - French Expression Explained

Ton château de sable, magnifique d'ailleurs, ne peut pas durer
Colin Anderson / Getty Images

The French expression d'ailleurs (pronounced [da yeur]) can mean besides, moreover; for that matter; might I add, or by the way. It has a normal register and literally translates to "from elsewhere."​

Explanation and Examples

The adverbial French expression ​d'ailleurs literally means "besides" or "moreover," but it also has two other uses:

  1. It can be used to add a bit of interesting but non-essential information, the way you might say "might I add" or "by the way."
  1. It's often tacked on to sentences with no real meaning - it's kind of a filler, like the English word "so."


   Je n'ai pas réussi à l'examen, et d'ailleurs je dois admettre que je n'ai même pas révisé.
   I didn't pass the test, and I have to admit that, moreover, I didn't even study.

   Moi non plus, d'ailleurs.
   Me neither, for that matter.

   Ton château de sable, magnifique d'ailleurs, ne peut pas durer avec ces fondations.
   Your sand castle, which by the way is magnificent, can't last on that foundation.

   J'ai parlé à Jean, d'ailleurs il a maigri, et il va venir vers midi.
   I talked to Jean, who has lost weight, by the way, and he'll be here around noon.

   D'ailleurs, on y va ?
   So anyway, are we going?

D'ailleurs is the required contraction of the preposition de (of, from, about) plus the adverb ailleurs (elsewhere, somewhere else).

mla apa chicago
Your Citation
ThoughtCo. "D'ailleurs - French Expression Explained." ThoughtCo, Feb. 26, 2018, thoughtco.com/dailleurs-1371175. ThoughtCo. (2018, February 26). D'ailleurs - French Expression Explained. Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/dailleurs-1371175 ThoughtCo. "D'ailleurs - French Expression Explained." ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/dailleurs-1371175 (accessed March 18, 2018).