Friday, 6 February 2009

Lettres Muettes

French pronunciation is one of the hardest aspects of the language. Generally you don't pronounce the end of a French word if it ends in a consonant. Generally if the word ends in a vowel then you do pronounce the final consonant. So the masculine content rhymes with the English 'on', but the feminine contente has a definite 't' sound on the end. Are you happy with that? So far so good but it gets more complicated.

The careful consonants i.e. c r f l at the end of French words are pronounced. Avec is the common example for the letter c. You pronounce the end of words like hiver, oeuf, and avril. As well as endings with these letters look out for sud and sept (but don't pronounce the p). The best way to learn pronunciation is of course to listen and talk with French speakers.

Don't be afraid of mistakes. You can learn from listening but you can also learn from having your mistakes corrected.

A bientôt

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