Discuss and learn French: French vocabulary, French grammar, French culture etc.
Yes, it's basically an informal/dialectal word for a sparrow, or indeed a bird in general. I'm not sure just how common it is today, but it was probably more common in Edith Piaf's time.
Note that there's also a feminine word "piaffe", essentially meaning "person with strange gestures/manerisms". I leave it to the reader to form an opinion about the extent to which one word may have influenced the other...
Môme is something like "kid", it's still in use today, like "chick" or "gal". For example, "une jolie môme" could translate to "a real good looker".
So, "Kid Sparrow", which doesn't really translate fluently, the most common translation of "La Môme Piaf" is "The Little Sparrow".
thanks for your comment, they certainly can work (particularly as single words), but perhaps sounds a bit clumsy. "The Little Sparrow" is really the best translation in this case.
btw, I've only just discovered this site, wish I had found it years ago, it's perfect for me.
I see, as Jay says in a comment:
this means that Edith is just known as "the little" in Paris /France,
the piaff/ sparrow is really not needed in the nickname in France,
all I need to say is "La Môme" and everyone in Paris and at Père-Lachaise, which I am about to visit next summer. --
knows I am talking about Her?