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The translation of "À la semaine prochaine" is "See you next week". Semaine is "week" and prochaine is "next". So it means that "À la" means "See you". I have not come across any definition that shows "À la" to mean "See You". Is this one of those sentences that just have to be memorised and word by word translation should be ignored.

"See" translation is voir. Shouldn't the translation be "Je vois semaine prochaine"

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  • A without accent is incorrect here. It's equivalent to "(rendez-vous) à la semaine prochaine" Aug 19, 2022 at 15:43

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Is this one of those sentences that just have to be memorised and word by word translation should be ignored.

Well yes but not the entire sentence: you just have to memorise what "À la" means.

Let me clarify: Another way of saying "À la semaine prochaine" is "On se voit la semaine prochaine" which is much closer to "See you next week"

So "See you" directly translates to "On se voit" or in more common french translates to "À la".

Note: There are other forms similar to "À la" depending on the context

  • "See you next week" -> "À la semaine prochaine"
  • "See you next time" -> "À la prochaine (fois)"
  • "See you later" -> "À plus tard"
  • "See you soon" -> "À bientôt"
  • "See you" (at the end of a conversation) -> "À plus"
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A more literal translation would be until next week.

It's still not exactly literal, and in English, we don't usually say until next week to mean see you next week, but that should give you some idea of why à la semaine prochaine means what it does.

Let me also say that you're parsing it wrong. à gets translated by until here, and la semaine prochaine means next week. You can see this by realizing that à demain means see you tomorrow. We need the definite article here in la semaine prochaine but not in next week because French grammar requires the definite article in some places where it isn't used in English.

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