French language assignment
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  • 1. University of management & Technology Article Topic: Consonants & Vowels in French LanguageProgram: MPhil Applied Linguistics, Batch VIIICourse title: Phonetics and PhonologyPresented to: Sir Nazir MalikPresented by: Hina Javaid 100884006 0
  • 2. Sr.no Topic Pg.no1 Abstract 12 Introduction 23 Rationale of the topic 34 Description of French alphabets 45 Description of French consonants 56 The French articles 67 French phonology 8 Stress: Tonic Accent L accent tonique 9 Intonation 9 10 Final consonants 10 Liaison8 Transcription of the quotes 119 References: 12 1
  • 3. Topic: Description of French alphabets, French consonants, Vowels & phonology And Transcription of quotations in FrenchAbstract: 2
  • 4. Learning a foreign language is a skill. This skill becomes challenging when the object language isdifficult, versatile and competent. French language is the accurate example gratia of such alanguage of romance and language of galore. Being soft, exuberant and fascinating language, itmesmerizes the folk all around the world to surpass the glamour of this language.This article is the same attempt at the very beginning level. It describes the French alphabetsand especially French consonants in detail with their English counterparts. It is tried toelaborate French phonology to some extent, which obviously is not sufficient as French is acomplete package of a standard language. Along with the description, side-by-side comparisonand connection is stretched to establish an affinity between English and French.Overall, this article is a first jump into the cavernous ocean of French language. 3
  • 5. Introduction:La langue française or French is a “Romance language”, descendant of Latin and is intimatelyrelated to Portuguese, Spanish, Italian, and Romanian. It is the native tongue of over 87 millionpeople, official language of 29 countries and has an additional 68 million non-native speakers. Itis one of the three working languages of the European Commission along with English andGerman. Despite of having 75 recognized languages prevailed in France, French is the firstobligatory and mandatory language of France. From 17th century to 20th century, French wasthe foremost diplomatic language of international relations but after that this role was takenover by English. French now sustains its status of diplomatic language proudly. French is thelanguage of sage. It’s erudite, cultured and rich in all of its aspects. Benjamin Franklin rightlyextolled the glory of France in such a way:Chaque homme a deux nations et un dentre eux est la FranceMeaning: Every man has two nations and one of them is FranceFrench-speaking people have made incursions upon the British Isles many times in the past,most noticeably in the Norman Invasion of 1066. For this reason, although English is a Germaniclanguage, at least a third of the English lexicon is derived from French and 40% vocabulary ofEnglish language is based on French origin. 4
  • 6. Rationale of the topic:French is considered and used as a language of diplomacy. It is soft, romance and naïve innature. My intention in getting intimate with French alphabets and language lounge in thesefacts, which I encountered while surfing for languages and their content; It is the second most taught language in the world after English. French words are broadly used in every dialect of most of the languages. 40% of English words (mainly multisyllabic) are loaned from French like Amateur, Bayonet, Boulevard, cuisine homage, denim, prude, Cliché, Tour de stade, Repertoire, Ricochet, Fiance (disambiguation), Entrepreneur, Façade, Voyeurism and a lot of others too. Intimacy with French language can boost up test score 100% on SAT. Researches shows that studying French enhanced score on Math as compared to those who studied math for many years. To learn other languages, English, Spanish even Arabic etc; French sets a foundation springboard to study them. French is spoken in five continents and is used officially in 29 countries and 125 million people speak it. Moreover, it is the official language of international agencies like United Nations, NATO, UNESCO, International Red Cross and International Olympic Committee. Overall, French is the practical of life and French means global communication. 5
  • 7. Description of French alphabets:The French alphabets are based on 26 Roman of Latin alphabets. The vowels include fivediacritics and two orthographic ligaturescharacter Symbols pronunciation Character Symbol pronunciation (IPA (IPA transcription) transcription)a /a/ ah n /ɛn/ Ennb /be/ Bay o /o/ Ohc /se/ Say p /pe/ Payd /de/ Day q /ky/ Kue /ə/ Euh r /ɛʀ/ Airf /ɛf/ Eff s /ɛs/ Essg /ʒɜ/ Jhay t /te/ Tayh /aʃ/ Ash u /y/ Ooi /i/ Ee v /ve/ Vayj /ʒi/ Zhee w /dubləve/ dubl-vayk /ka/ Kah x /iks/ Eeksl /ɛl/ El y /igrɛk/ ee-grehkm /ɛm/ emm z /zɛd/ zedh 6
  • 8. Detailed description of French consonants with approximate sound in Englishand examples:French consonant/sound approximate sound in English translation in Frenchb boat bateauc centre centred date datef fell est tombég gun fusilh Aspirated h is used in French héros heroj measure mesurek/q kite cerf-volantl lie mensongem man, honey home, mieln new nouveaup pair pairer run dirigés servant domestiquet train trainv victory victoirex socks Chaussettes, expansionz zebra zèbresch, shame honteni lamb agneauch scheme projet 7
  • 9. The French articles:In French, articles are almost required with all common nouns. They are inflected to agree inon gender and numbers. French has 3 articles: 1. Definite ‘la/le’ 2. Indefinite ‘une/un’ 3. partitive ‘du/de la’Definite ‘the’ or ‘la’:The French definite article is used with a noun referring to a specific item in the cases whereboth the speaker and audience know the item. It is also used with mass nouns and plural nounswith generic interpretation, and with abstract nouns.for example: I want to learn the French orje veux apprendre le françaisForms of definite la: singular plural before consonant before vowel or mute h1masculine le2 l les2feminine laThe indefinite article ‘une/un’ or ‘a/an’:The French article is similar to the English indefinite article a/an. The French indefinite article isused with a noun referring to a non-specific item, or to a specific item when the speaker andaudience do not both know what the item is.Forms of indefinite article une/un singular pluralmasculine un desfeminine une 8
  • 10. The partitive article ‘du/de la’ or ‘some’:It is similar to ‘some’ and is used to indicate an indefinite portion of something uncountable, oran indefinite number of something countable. Forms of the partitive article: singular plural before consonant before vowel or mute h1masculine du de l desfeminine de la 9
  • 11. French phonology Voiced stops /b d ɡ/ are typically produced fully voiced throughout. Voiceless stops /p t k/ are unaspirated. Nasals: The velar nasal /ŋ/ can occur in final position in borrowed (usually English) words: parking, campin, and swing. The palatal nasal /ɲ/ can occur in word initial position (e.g. gnon), but it is most frequently found in intervocalic, onset position or word-finally (e.g. montagne). Fricatives: French has three pairs of homorganic fricatives distinguished by voicing, o labiodental /f/~/v/ o Dental /s/~/z/ like the plosives /t/~/d/, and the nasal /n/. o palato-alveolar /ʃ/~/ʒ/ French has one uvula r or voiced uvular fricative as in [ʁu] roue, "wheel". o Vowels are lengthened before this segment. o It can be reduced to an approximant, particularly in final position (e.g. fort) or reduced to zero in some word-final positions. o For some speakers, a uvular trill is also common, and an apical trill [r] occurs in some dialects. Lateral and central approximants: The lateral approximant /l/ is unvelarised in both onset (lire) and coda position (il). o In the onset, the central approximants [w], [ɥ], and [j] each correspond to a high vowel, /u/, /y/, and /i/ respectively. o There are a few minimal pairs where the approximant and corresponding vowel contrast, but there are also many cases where they are in free variation. Contrasts between /j/ and /i/ occur in final position as in /pɛj/ paye, "pay", vs. /pɛi/ pays, "country".Stress: Tonic Accent - L’accent tonique 10
  • 12. In English, certain syllables are stressed more than others but in French; every syllable is evenlystressed and pronounced. French is a syllable-timed language, so equal emphasis is given toeach syllable as compared to stress-rhythm language, English. For exampleEnglish stressed word French counterpartphotography Photographieauthority autoriténationality Nationalitépassion passioneducation éducationIntonationIntonation in French is slightly different from English. In general, the intonation rises only for ayes/no question, and the rest of the time, the intonation falls. French intonation starts at ahigher pitch and falls continuously throughout the sentence, whereas in English, the stressedsyllable has a higher pitch that what precedes and follows it.Sentence Type English Intonation French IntonationYes/No Question Are you leaving? 2-3 Est-ce que vous partez? 2-3Information Where are you 2-3-1 Où est-ce que vous 4-2–1Question going? allez?Imperative Do it. / Dont do (2) - 3 - 1 Fais-le. / Ne le fais pas. 4-2-1 it.Exclamation What a surprise! 2-3-1 Quelle surprise! 4-2–1Declarative I bought a dress. 2-3-1 Jai acheté une robe. 3-2-1Final consonants: 11
  • 13. In French, certain consonants are silent when they are the final letter of a word. Final singleconsonants, in particular s, x, z, t, d, n, g and m, are normally silent. A consonant is considered"final" when no vowel follows it even if one or more consonants follow it. The letters p (as in coup), s (as in héros), t (as in chat), d (as in marchand), and x (as in paresseux), are never pronounced at the end of a word. The final letters c, f, k, q and l, however, are normally pronounced. The final r is usually silent when it follows an e in a word of two or more syllables, but is pronounced in other cases. The t is pronounced when it follows a c. for example the s in les amants or vous avez; some are optional, depending on dialect and register. The letter h can be aspirated, (h aspiré), or not aspirated, (h non aspiré), depending on which language the word was borrowed from. o For example: the word héros, (hero) has an aspirated h, because when the definite article le is placed before it, the result is le héros, and both words must be pronounced separately. However, the feminine form of héros, héroïne is a non-aspirated h. Therefore when the definite article in front of it, it becomes lhéroïne, and is pronounced as one word.Liaison:French pronunciation follows strict rules based on spelling, but French spelling is often based more onhistory than phonology. Liaison is the pronunciation of a latent word-final consonant immediatelybefore a following vowel sound. When the following word begins with a vowel, however, asilent consonant may once again be pronounced, to provide a liaison or "link" between the twowords. For example the first s in deux cents euros or euros irlandais; and some are forbidden,for example the s in beaucoup dhommes aiment. The t of et is never pronounced and thesilent final consonant of a noun is only pronounced in the plural and in set phrases like pied-à-terre. 12
  • 14. Transcription of the quotes of a French absurdist and philosopher, AlbertCamus:"In the depth of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer." Dans la profondeur dhiver, jai finalement appris que dans moi là posent un été invincible."There are places where the mind dies so that a truth which is its very denial may be born." Il y a des endroits où lesprit meurt pour quune vérité qui est sa même dénégation puisse être née."At the heart of all beauty lies something inhuman, and these hills, the softness of the sky, the outline ofthese trees at this very minute lose the illusory meaning with which we had clothed them, henceforthmore remote than a lost paradise... that denseness and that strangeness of the world is absurd." Au coeur de tous les mensonges de beauté quelque chose dinhumain et cescollines, la douceur du ciel, le contour de ces arbres à cette même minute perdentle sens illusoire avec lequel nous les avions habillés, désormais plus lointain quun paradis perdu ... que la densité et que la singularité du monde est absurde. 13
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  • 16. Introduction:The second-most studied foreign language in the world after English is French. Being an official;language in 29 countries, it has got the status of language of international agencies. It is one ofthe three working languages of the European Commission along with English and Germanle français est la langue de roman. cest la langue molle et tout aussi insistée.French is the language of romance. It is soft and equally stressed language. These qualities ofFrench language are inspiring people to learn it for their own interest, utility and enjoyment.English speakers, native or non-native, have interaction with this language little or more.Almost 40% loan words are used in English language. French words for example the word: almamatre, coup-dete, ah-hoc, ad interim, affair de ameur, debacle, intoto, en rapport, modusoperandi, exemple gratia, beau monde, magnum opus, pro tempore, visa verse, vis-à-vis, vide,are most often used in English language also.Description of French vowels:A, o, and u are sometimes called hard vowels and e and i are soft vowels, because certain consonants (c,g, s) have a "hard" and a "soft" pronunciation, depending on which vowel follows.Long Vowels Short Vowels Similar English[a] [ə] not - nut[i] ---- sheep[e] [ɛ] wait – wet[o] [ɔ] coat - caught[u] ---- moon 15
  • 17. Words in Contrast[a] - [ə] rapporter reporter[e] - [ə] des mains demain[e] - [ɛ] pré près[o] - [ɔ] paume pommeUnrounded Rounded[i] [y][e] [ø][ɛ] [œ]Semi-VowelsSemi-vowels can also be called glides or approximants.IPA Phonetic spelling Sample words General spelling[w] w fois, oui, Louis oi, ou[ɥ] ew-ee lui, suisse ui[j] yuh oreille, Mireille ill, yWords in contrast[wa] - [a] loi la[ɥ] - [y] lui Lu[ej] - [e] pareil paré[aj] - [a] bail bas 16
  • 18. Nasal VowelsVowels followed by M or N are usually nasal. A nasal vowel is a sound made by expelling air through themouth and nose without obstruction of the lips, tongue, or throat. Nasal pronunciation can be verydifferent from the normal pronunciation of the same vowels.IPA Phonetic spelling Sample words General spelling ] awn gant, banc, dent en, em, an, am, aon, aen[ɛ] ahn pain, vin, linge in, im, yn, ym, ain, aim, ein, eim, un, um, en, eng, oin, oing, oint, ien, yen, éen ] uhn brun, lundi, parfum un ] ohn rond, ongle, front on, omWords in ContrastNasal Vowel Nasal ConsonantFranc franchebrun bruneindien indiennebon bonne 17
  • 19. French phonology of vowel: Most French vowels are pronounced further forward in the mouth than their English counterparts. The tongue must remain tensed throughout the pronunciation of the vowel. French vowels do not diphthong. In English, vowels tend to be followed by a y sound (after a, e, or i) or a w sound (after o or u). In French, this is not the case - the vowel sound remains constant: it does not change into a y or w sound. Thus the French vowel is a "purer" sound than the English vowel.Rules for French vowels: 1. In closed syllable words, CVC, the vowels are longer as compared to open syllable words. 2. In stressed open syllables, only [ø] is possible. In stressed, closed syllables, only [œ] is possible, unless the syllable ends in [t], [tR], or [z] - in which case, [ø] can occur. 3. In French, no consonant follows [e] and it appears in open syllables only. In closed syllables, [ɛ] is used; however, [ɛ] can also be found in open syllables. (This is a major difference with English as [ɛ] can never be found in open syllables.) 4. [o] Always occurs in stressed open syllables, and [ɔ] occurs in stressed closed syllables. Nevertheless, [o] can also occur in stressed closed syllables, depending on the spelling of the word: when the letter o is followed by [m], [n], [z]; when the letters au are not followed by [R]; and by the letter ô. 5. Words ending in -eil or -eille are pronounced [ej], while words ending in -ail or -aille are pronounced [aj]. 18
  • 20. DiacriticsIn French language five types of diacritic marks are used; the acute ( ´ ), grave ( ` ), andcircumflex ( ˆ ) accents, the diaeresis (French: tréma) ( ¨ ), and the cedilla ( ¸ ). It is noteworthythat these diacritics have no impact on the primary alphabetical order. A circumflex (diacritic) â ê î ô û is applied to all vowels. This diacritic effects the pronunciation of a, e and o but not of I and u. it is used to show the presence of historical letter s which is now mute and silent. Its function is to distinguish homophones also like jeûne [ʒøn] vs. jeune [ʒœn]) or du ("of the") vs. dû (past participle of devoir "to have to do something. French accent is only applied to e. it has acute accent é and grave accent à è ù A tréma (French for diaerasis, two dots on top to make the hiatus, two adjacent vowels, not separated by a consonant or pause and not merged into a diphthong)is put on vowels: ä, ë, ï, ö, ü, ÿ . It indicates that a vowel is to be pronounced separately from the preceding one: naïve, Noël. The diaeresis on u appears only in the biblical proper names Archélaüs, Capharnaüm, Emmaüs, Ésaü and Saül and diaeresis on y only occurs in some proper names and in modern editions of old French texts. Cedilla (ç): the c cedilla (ç) softens the otherwise hard /k/ sound to /s/ before the vowels a, o or u, for example ça /sa/. C cedilla is never used before the vowels e or i since these two vowels always produce a soft /s/ sound (ce, ci). In addition to these diacritics, a tilde diacritical mark ( ˜ ) is used on /n/ only with the well-known Spanish names like Cañon. 19
  • 21. Differences between French and English vowels:Accent:There are four French accents for vowels. It is essential to put accents in their proper places in Frenchlanguage otherwise an incorrect or missing accent would be considered a spelling mistake which mustnot be overlooked. English puts accent on words of foreign origin only.Pronunciation of vowelsPronunciation of French vowels is mainly different from the English vowels. French being an accentedlanguage puts grave accent only on à è ù and acute accent on e.The effect of the Great Vowel Shift may be seen very clearly in the English names of many of the lettersof the alphabet. A, B, C and D are pronounced /eɪ, bi:, si:, di:/ in todays English, but in contemporaryFrench they are /a, be, se, de/. The French names (from which the English names are derived) preservethe English vowels from before the Great Vowel Shift. By contrast, the names of F, L, M, N and S (/ɛf, ɛl,ɛm, ɛn, ɛs/) remain the same in both languages, because "short" vowels were unaffected by the Shift.Transcription of Alexander Pope: An essay on man, IV, HONOUR Honor and shame from no condition rise. Act well your part: there all the honor liesTranscription: honneur Lhonneur et la honte daucune augmentation de condition. Acte bien votre partie : là tous les mensonges dhonneur. 20
  • 22. References:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_phonologyhttp://www.frenchlanguageguide.com/french/pronunciation/difficult-consonants.asphttp://www.frenchlanguageguide.com/french/pronunciation/vowels.asphttp://www.jump-gate.com/languages/french/french1.htmlhttp://www.ielanguages.com/frenchphonetics.htmlhttp://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liaison_%28linguistics%29 21
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