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British English: /bɪˈhʌɪnd/
American English: /bəˈhaɪnd/
When used as a preposition to talk about the physical position of something, behind is translated by derrière: behind the house = derrière la maison. behind is sometimes used in verb combinations ( fall behind, lag behind etc). For translations, consult the appropriate verb entry ( fall behind lag behind etc).For adverbial uses and figurative prepositional uses see the entry below.

Translation of behind in French:




  • to be behind with
    avoir du retard dans
    (studies, work)
    to be too far behind
    avoir trop de retard
    to be behind in one's research
    être en retard dans ses recherches
    to be a long way behind
    être franchement en retard
    I'm behind with my rent
    je n'ai pas payé mon loyer



  • 1 (at rear of) (physically)
    (person, vehicle, object)
    the mountains behind the town
    les montagnes qui se trouvent/trouvaient derrière la ville
    behind my back
    derrière le dos
    derrière mon dos
  • 2 (at other side of)
    (desk, counter, barrier, line)
    to work behind the bar
    être barman/barmaid
  • 3 [figurative] (concealed) See examples: behind the smile
    derrière son sourire
    the reality behind the façade
    la réalité derrière les apparences
    the real story behind the news
    la véritable histoire que les médias n'ont pas révélée
  • 4 [figurative] (less advanced than) See examples: to be behind the others
    être en retard par rapport aux autres
  • 5 [figurative] (motivating) See examples: the reasons behind his declaration
    les raisons qui motivent/motivaient etc sa déclaration
    what is behind his actions?
    qu'est-ce qui le pousse à agir ainsi?
    who is behind this proposal?
    qui est à l'origine de cette proposition?
  • 6 [figurative] (supporting) See examples: to be (solidly) behind somebody
    soutenir quelqu'un (à fond)
    he has no family behind him
    il n'a pas de famille pour le soutenir
    the woman behind the man
    la femme en coulisses
  • 7 [figurative] (in past) See examples: he has three years' experience behind him
    il a trois ans d'expérience derrière lui
    those days are behind me now
    cette période est bien loin
    I've put all that behind me now
    j'ai oublié tout ça

Definition of behind in:

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    arrogantly superior and disdainful