Les jeux sont faits.

Les jeux sont faits.

lay zhuh saw FAY.  Click below to hear the sound file!  

The die is cast.

Or, to quote Julius Caesar as he crossed the Rubicon River, Alea jacta est. What he meant was that, for better or worse, crossing the river committed him and his troops to civil war, and eventually led to his crowning as emperor.

Or in a casino: The bets are in. No more bets. Or generalizing from casino usage: The chips are down. The game is up. Or, if you’re a Chicago gangster surrounded by a ring of cops with sawed-off shotguns pointed at you, The jig is up. So many translations, so little time!

Literally, though, the games are done. Jean-Paul Sartre wrote a screenplay in 1943 called Les Jeux sont faits (movie: 1947), which tackles issues such as freedom and predestination, life after death, and absurdity. You can find a great plot summary and brief analysis at this link. Talk about how things can go completely wrong….

There’s also a fascinating discussion about how to translate this expression on Wordreference.com, at this link. Just shows how people can come to the right conclusion for the wrong reasons!

Use this expression whenever you take a step towards an irrevocable course of action. Les jeux sont faits!

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