Complete post:




Du coup...”

As a result...”, and so...

The expression Du coup... is extremely common, especially in spoken French. So, how should we use it?

Basically, du coup makes a logical link between two elements, the second one arising as a result of the first.

Du coup frequently 'justifies' some whim, for example a spur-of-the-moment purchase. Let's consider some examples:

  • Cette robe était en solde, du coup je l'ai achetée!
    = This dress was on sale so I bought it!
  • Je l'ai rencontré au match, du coup je l'ai invité à venir prendre l'apéritif à la maison.
    = I met him at the match and so, I invited him to come and have a drink at my place.
  • Ils ne pouvaient pas venir, du coup nous avons reporté la réunion.
    = They couldn't come so we put off the meeting.
  • Michel a pris un jour de RTT*. Du coup, on va passer la journée à Paris.
    (*Une réduction du temps de travail)
    = Michel has taken a day off in lieu so we're going to spend the day in Paris.


Similar expressions:

Du coup can be replaced by:

  • par conséquent
  • de ce fait
  • à la suite de quoi

Comment(s)/question from Netschwester on May, 21 at 12:59

I understood that the word donc had a similar meaning, am I correct?

Comment(s)/question from equipe_lfbp on May, 21 at 15:21

When we use donc, there is cause and effect. That is, the logical consequence of the first element of the sentence... is the second element. For example:

  • Le témoin n'a rien vu, donc il ne peut rien dire.
    = The witness saw nothing. Therefore, he can say nothing.
  • Ma voiture est tombé en panne, j'ai donc été retardé.
    = My car broke down. Therefore, I was delayed.

The logical consequence is not always established when using du coup. (Du coup often introduces a whimsical action, decision, etc.)

In the spoken language, of course, we will often break the rules... so sometimes we will find donc, sometimes du coup.

If you wish, you may comment on or ask a question about the above. You must log in to add a comment or ask a question.