On Saturday I was meeting my ex-colleague and her English husband and we spent a very nice evening together. After a meal in the pub we came back to their place for some whiskey (those in the passenger seat) and water (me, the designated driver). Somehow the conversation turned to the French and I was not in the least surprised to hear things like ‘frog-leg-eaters’ and other highly critical and emotional expressions about the French. My friend’s husband summed it up nicely by saying that ‘no love is lost between the French and the English’.
I personally am very fond of everything French and hopefully I’ll be travelling there next week, but this is not the first time I hear about this entrenched mutual hatred. Here and here is a bit of an insight into why this is so.
Below are a couple of examples of this newly-discovered expression:
– A quarter of Macedonia’s 2m people are ethnic Albanians. In 2001 they skirted perilously close to civil war. Now, although no love is lost between the two sides, there is no violence between them (The Economist).
– If this were a purely commercial dispute, a compromise would be found. But political undercurrents are just as important. Little love is lost between Ukraine and Russia, especially since the Orange revolution of four years ago (The Economist).