à ce moment / en ce moment


Senior Member
Deutschland ~ Deutsch/Sächsisch
De l'un autre fil. :)

Agnes E. said:
A ce moment et en ce moment sont deux expressions différentes.

A ce moment = at this (precise) moment
En ce moment = now
Y a-t-il une différence entre "now" et "at this moment"? Les deux sont présents. Pourrais-tu traduire ces phrases, stp:

I'm going to school right now.
I can't see you now; you're in Moskow.
At this moment, I don't want to do homework.

Je les traduirais comme suivant:

Je suis en train d'aller à l'école.
Je ne peux pas te voir maintenant; tu es à Moscou.
En ce moment, je n'ai pas envie de faire mes devoirs.

Corrigez-moi, si je me suis trompé.
  • Jean-Michel Carrère

    Senior Member
    French from France
    IMO, you cannot use "à ce moment" alone, it has to be used with '-là' ( à ce moment-là : then / at the time / at that time / in those days ... depending on the context)

    en ce moment, of course, means right now / at the moment


    Senior Member
    France / Français
    Jean-Michel Carrère said:
    IMO, you cannot use "à ce moment" alone, it has to be used with '-là' ( à ce moment-là : then / at the time / at that time / in those days ... depending on the context)
    I agree it sounds better with "-là" or "précis" (à ce moment précis).
    However, it can also be used alone : searching Google for "à ce moment, il" (between double quote marks) provides some examples (31,100).


    Senior Member
    français de France
    I'd also use à ce moment-là.

    Juste à ce moment-là, la pluie s'est mise à tomber.
    At that very moment, the rain began to fall.

    C'est à ce moment-là que nous avons remarqué la petite fille. (= alors)
    That's when we first noticed the lilltle girl.

    À ce moment-là, ce type de logiciel était encore rare. (= à cette époque là)
    At that time, that type of program was still rare.

    But there is another meaning, more idiomatic, where it can be translated to then as an indicator of causality:

    « Tu n'as pas assez pour prendre un taxi? À ce moment-là nous viendrons te chercher en voiture. »
    « You don't have enough for a taxi? Then we'll come get you with the car. »


    Imperfect Mod
    US English/Palestinian Arabic bilingual
    Whodunit said:
    Ah, thank you very much, Egueule. That makes it clear. :)
    Just a comment on "en ce moment" ("à ce moment" was explained beautifully and thoroughly by Egueule):

    "En ce moment" means "now" in the general sense. It could also be translated as "these days" or "at the moment." It is therefore different from "à ce moment" in that it does not necessarily refer to one specific moment in time.


    New Member
    US / English
    Hello, all. This thread is very interesting to me because I have wondered about the difference between the 2 phrases.

    Just to make sure I understand, the text below is from one of our web pages. It is intended to show up to users when a particular computer system, server, network, etc. is not available.

    The English is mine -- then the French translation is mine with some corrections from a co-worker.

    Have I used "à ce moment" correctly? Or maybe I should say "à ce moment-ci or "en ce moment"?


    The requested service is currently unavailable or is experiencing difficulties.


    A ce moment, le service demandé est indisponible ou le service a des difficultés.

    Last edited by a moderator:


    Senior Member
    English, Canada
    what about if you're not referring to THIS moment, but several moments? In particular, I'm thinking of descriptions of books or movies; can we say,

    "En plusieurs moments dans l'histoire..."

    "À plusieurs moments dans l'histoire..."?

    Merci bien!



    Uk - English
    Can I ask about actuellement....when it is used in french, it can often be translated as "at the moment".

    Am I right in doing this? Currently, ie the direct translation, doesn't sound good.


    Moon Palace

    Senior Member
    This last question is interesting to me, because there are so many mistakes about 'actuellement' and 'currently'...

    I am working on a newsarticle at the moment, so I can't answer right now.
    Je suis en train de travailler sur un article, je ne peux donc pas te répondre tout de suite.
    I am currently working for a computer firm, but I would like to find a teaching job.
    Actuellement / En ce moment je travaille pour une société d'informatique, mais j'aimerais bien trouver un poste d'enseignant.

    To me, currently conveys the idea of a longer period of time than 'at the moment', which is why they are not exactly the same when you translate. The context should help figure out which one to choose. I think it also depends on the state of mind of the locutor, since if he considers the moment he considers will be long enough, he might choose 'actuellement' which gives no limit in the future, whereas 'en ce moment' is short term. Hope it is clear enough.:)


    Senior Member
    English, USA (Southern California)
    Two related questions: can "à ce moment-là" mean 'Right now' instead of 'at that moment'?

    And does "dans ce moment" exist? I found lots of hits on Google, but I have the impression that it is not correct.

    Merci d'avance.


    Senior Member
    French - France
    "à ce moment-là" can be translated by "right then", not "right now"

    I'm not sure about "dans ce moment", but you can say "dans ces moments-là" = in that kind of situation
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