FR: c'en est fini de - rôle de "en"

Whizzer

Senior Member
English
Hey all,
Never seen this structural form before, so just need a little help in translating it/ why "en" is actully used!
It's an article about homing pigeons, and this part comes in the actual title of the article:

A l'armée, c'en est fini des pigeons voyageurs, concurrencés par le courrier électronique.

My try:
In the army, it is finished of homing pigeons, rivaled by electronic mail.

Does the "en" relate to "l'armée"?

[…]

Sorry for the questions, still relatively new to learning French!

Thanks for any help at all
 
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  • Madore

    Senior Member
    French (France)
    This is a rather formal and somewhat outdated expression.
    EN means OF IT => it is over, we have finished with it
    EN relates actually to "the fact that pigeons are used for transporting mail".

    […]
     
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    ChampagneBrut

    Senior Member
    American & Canadian English
    That's right. EN = (that's the end) of it

    So, you would just write naturally in English and not try to translate every single element in the French. Perhaps, something like: "In the army, homing pigeons are now obsolete, rivaled by electronic mail."

    CB
     
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