• I am puzzled what is the correct version.

C'est la faute à/de Voltaire.


C'est de la faute à/de Voltaire.

  • Also, how this turn can be used in real context?

  • I know it is an old turn. Can it still be used colloquially and be understood?


1 Answer 1


The correct actual French sentence would be C'est de la faute de Voltaire,

However, C'est la faute à Voltaire is a really famous reference from Les Misérables.

It's an understandable sentence, even if not correct.

You could use it when you stumble and fall for example, to quote Victor Hugo saying :

Je suis tombé par terre, 
C'est la faute à Voltaire

You might also use it when asked if you know who's the culprit :

- De qui est-ce la faute ?
- C'est la faute à Voltaire

Using the reference would be an obvious way of saying you don't know.

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