Does coq-a-l'ane = cockamamie?

To quote Czarcasm
“There’s a French variation, coq-a-l’ane (cock to donkey)”

Is this where ‘cockamamie’, as in “What a cockamamie idea” comes from?

Actually there is a small mistake - “coq a l’ane” doesn’t means “unbelievable story”, but when somebody changes the subject in mide-conversation without any warning.

“Yes, the weather is splendid today. I still think Alexander wouldn’t have killed Cletus, no matter how drunk” is a coq a l’ane.

Cockamamie is indeed a corruption of a French word, “decalcomanie” - see for more.

Cool. Many thanks.

Oh, and welcome to the SDMB! A great place for chatting, discussions, humor and (my favorite) lurking.

Couldn’t coq-a-l’ane also translate as cock with donkey? As in coq au vin, etc., &c.

Yes, but no native speaker would understand it like that. “Passer du coq à l’âne” simply means to make a non sequitur.

If “to go from cock to donkey,” means to make a non-sequitur, then I think it’s a pretty obvious metaphor, & not clearly connected to “cock-and-bull”. Czarcasm, explain yourself!

Yes, I understand that it means a non sequitur in French; I wasn’t questioning its idiomatic connotation. What I was questioning is the phrase’s literal translation into English, which Czarcasm writes to be “cock to donkey.” I believe it would be the same as its English counterpart (i.e., cock and bull) and thus translate to “cock and donkey.”

Shouldn’t it be translated as “cock to the ass”? More potential for discussion that way.

pqgenie originally asks

Ghostwise actually answers a different question in the next reply. pqgenie incorrectly assumes that the question is answered in the affirmative.

pqgenie. coq-a-l’ane and cockamamie have nothing to do with each other in an etymological sense.