avoir une petite faim

tigrette

Senior Member
French, France
Hello,

I'm looking for best way to translate in English the idea of "small hunger" as in petite fringale in French.

"Raging hunger" seems very strong to me. I am looking for a word that expresses this "midnight hunger" (urge ?) to have a midnight snack, for instance.
Thanks
 
  • wildan1

    Moderando ma non troppo (French-English, CC Mod)
    BE (only) uses peckish for this, I believe.

    AE would say I'm a little hungry; I wouldn't mind nibbling on something; I feel like a snack. I'm afraid I can't think of an AE way that's quite exactly like petite faim/fringale/un petit creux
     

    francais_espanol

    Senior Member
    Canada, English
    BE (only) uses peckish for this, I believe.

    AE would say I'm a little hungry; I wouldn't mind nibbling on something; I feel like a snack. I'm afraid I can't think of an AE way that's quite exactly like petite faim/fringale/un petit creux
    I'm Canadian and I use "peckish"... I might be the only one though...
     

    tigrette

    Senior Member
    French, France
    Thank you. Is peckish a word or an adjective?
    I found night-eating syndrome for fringale nocturne. Is it correct?
     

    wildan1

    Moderando ma non troppo (French-English, CC Mod)
    Thank you. Is peckish a word or an adjective?
    It is both a word* and an adjective: (*did you mean noun?)

    peck·ish Pronunciation [pek-ish] –adjective. Chiefly British Informal. 1.somewhat hungry: By noon we were feeling a bit peckish. 2.rather irritable: He's always a bit peckish after his nap.
    [Origin: 1775–85; peck2 + -ish1]

    Source: Random House Dictionary
     

    SwissToni

    Senior Member
    England, English.
    "I am looking for a word that expresses this "midnight hunger" (urge ?) to have a midnight snack, for instance."

    The words already given are very good. We have a very informal expression in BE: "the munchies". It's like "peckish", but a bit more up-to-date, and has a hint of compulsion. So "I woke up with the munchies" would convey this urge for a midnight snack.
     

    Old Novice

    Senior Member
    USA, English
    "I am looking for a word that expresses this "midnight hunger" (urge ?) to have a midnight snack, for instance."

    The words already given are very good. We have a very informal expression in BE: "the munchies". It's like "peckish", but a bit more up-to-date, and has a hint of compulsion. So "I woke up with the munchies" would convey this urge for a midnight snack.
    This works fine in AE, too.
     

    yannicus

    Member
    france - french/english
    Munchies is contextually bound though... to a very specific, ah, chemically-induced, ah, post-party context... At least, it is only used in that context as far as i know, but it may have spilled into the general, natural hunger category.
     

    wildan1

    Moderando ma non troppo (French-English, CC Mod)
    Munchies is contextually bound though... to a very specific, ah, chemically-induced, ah, post-party context... At least, it is only used in that context as far as i know, but it may have spilled into the general, natural hunger category.
    Yes, the only time I remember hearing munchies is after a round of drugs (and it's been a long time since I heard that--but maybe that's about my drug intake and not its common usage)
     

    alisonp

    Senior Member
    English - UK
    I've never known (or just never realised) it to be linked to drugs in the UK, but perhaps that's just my background.

    A thought: don't we tend to say a bit peckish rather than just peckish on its own?
     

    Camis12

    Senior Member
    England, English
    People do tend to preface peckish with something, such as a little, rather, somewhat... but there's nothing actually wrong with "by this time we were feeling peckish" or similar.

    re: munchies in my experience this can be used with or without a drugs connotation, it depends on the person.
     
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