On my package of frozen salmon fillets, the following text was on the back of the package:

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We have taken great care to remove all bones from this product, however some bones may remain.

Bien qu'un soin tout particuller alt été pris pour enlever toutes les arêtes, il peut en rester quelques-unes.

I am having trouble translating the French text. Here are some places I have difficulty:

Bien qu'un soin tout particuller

Even though a complete care .. "particuller??" WordReference says that "particuller" has no English translations. Was this supposed to be "particulier" instead? But even if it was supposed to be "particulier", I'm not sure what the translation would be, because

"Even though a complete, specific care.."

, doesn't sound correct?

alt été pris

"alt" also doesn't have an English translation. Is this supposed to be "ait"?

il peut en rester quelques-unes

I have finding out what "peut + en + infinitive" means, through google, but I could not find an answer. I haven't ever before encountered "en + infinitive". What does "en + infinitive" generally mean (and is there a way I could have found out the answer myself?).

  • 1
    Strange. It's supposed to be “ait” and “particulier”. “Tout particulier” is idiomatic French (notice that tout is an adverb, not another adjective). A translation won't help to understand its usage. It lies somewhere between “special” and “specific”, and is just a tiny bit reminiscent of a mass-advertising “just for you”. Mar 18, 2018 at 9:57
  • @StéphaneGimenez: "tout" seems to be a word that easily confuses learners of French. comments like yours will help me learn its grammatical role as an adverb, as i parse it in a sentence, and also it helps me to sense its unique meaning.
    – silph
    Mar 18, 2018 at 11:40

1 Answer 1


Several questions and several answers.

  • particuller: indeed, as you guessed, it should be particulier. Particulier is here an adjective that emphazises its noun. In English, is it not correct to say "We were particularly careful in removing..."? Here it would be the same idea. And even it is tout particulier as a whole (here tout does not have a meaning of complete). tout emphasizes particulier, which means soin is doubly emphazised (sort of we were really really particularly careful, I swear). It is called marketing ^^.

  • Indeed, it is ait. It is subjunctive of avoir. Subjunctive is needed after bien que.

  • en is here a pronoun, that means of them. Il peut en rester quelques-unes => Il peut rester quelques-unes [de ces arêtes]. I think your difficulty was that you sought a meaning for pouvoir + en. There is none ! en is not related to pouvoir, here.

  • idioms are so difficult for me as a language learner to learn! so thanks for this. also, i did not know that "en" could apply, simply using its usually meaning as a pronoun, to infinitives, but now i do. really helpful answer, tanks.
    – silph
    Mar 18, 2018 at 11:38

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