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Français - Orthographe : sens dessus dessous

French expression : sens dessus dessous

by | 2 Jun 2016 | French Language


Sens dessus dessous is a French set phrase that you can use when you want to say that something or someone is upside down, upset or in a great state of confusion.

It is commonly used both in a literal and figurative sense:

  • Nous sommes rentrés dans la pièce : tout y était sens dessus dessous. (We entered the room: everything was in a big mess / everything had been turned upside down)
  • C’était une catastrophe qui avait mis sa vie sens dessus dessous (It was a disaster that turned his life upside down)

Note that the final S in the word sens is usually always pronounced, but not in this very expression. It is clearly an exception… What is not a exception though is the fact that you should never pronounce the final S in dessus and in dessous 😉

There you are! Now you know what the French phrase sens dessus dessous means. Try and use it next time you have the opportunity to speak French! 🙂


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