I came about this sentence: "Le Fritz mitraille épouvantable, s'apporte là-haut du fond des cieux! La vache! De son brezinzin il nous rase!"

What does brezinzin mean? Is it an onomatopeia? I know the word zinzin exists, then what is the effect of the prefix bre in this case?

  • 1
    That seems to be for the sound, according to this document google.com/…
    – Larme
    Jun 23, 2021 at 18:34
  • 2
    This is not a classic onomatopei but more probably one created by the author. As a native, I'v never heard nor read this one.
    – XouDo
    Jun 24, 2021 at 7:59

2 Answers 2


It is likely an onomatopeia reminding the sound of a plane (Brrrr) followed by "Zin Zin", the sound of shots, falling bombs or the sirens used by the German bombers.


As others mentioned, this is definitely an onomatopeia related to big sounds, just like zinzin. It's always hard to give an exact meaning to these words.

The way most readers would approach this is simply with the context. You know they're describing something terrible coming from the sky, so you can imagine the word meaning "something happening which makes big sounds".

It's so uncommon that even to a french person, it sounds exactly like this would sound to an english speaker: "From his brezinzin, he's razing us!". In the end, it's used to achieve some kind of poetic or literary purpose and it fits the tragic and fancy narrative trying to be conveyed.

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