French Pronounciation SOS | Specific language questions | Forum

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French Pronounciation SOS
December 3, 2011
12:43
Edmundyong
mALAYSIA

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1.)Is French 'r' always pronounce like that?

2.)I think I'm ok in pronouncing the French 'r' but when it comes to several 'r' in one word or 'r' combine with consonant , I am not okay!
example : many 'r'            :serrure , serrurier , rire
               consonant +'r'   :cidre , débris , ouvrir , comprendre

any tips please??? cry

ssssssss    oooooo   ssssssss
ss            o       o   ss

ssssssss   o       o   ssssssss

        ss   o       o           ss 

ssssssss  oooooo   ssssssss

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December 3, 2011
13:18
Lingo

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On changes of the French r I quote ielanguages:

"It must remain consistent in all positions, regardless of the other vowels and consonants that may be adjacent to it. "
You'll find a mp3 file with some more examples of r at different positions at

http://www.ielanguages.com/frenchphonetics.html

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February 20, 2012
15:03
Sebastien_K

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I would say that r [ʁ] is totally unaffected by consonant doubling (as are most counsonant in French), they only have etymological origins and have no phonetic significance.

 

I think a very conscientious French-speakers might make [ʁ] imperceptibly longer in a word such as barre as compared to bar (the r is usually pretty dulled in casual speech speed if not at the beginning of words, and one might unconsciously dull it a bit less while reading rre than just r), but nothing you will ever have to care about (nor does the vast majority of French) .

 

the letter r has a very regular pronunciation by French standards : the only occasion in which r is not pronounced as a standard [ʁ] is in the combination 'er' at the end of a word (which becomes [e]).

 

To sum up my thoughts :

- beginning of a word : barely dulled.

- somewhere else in a word : usually dulled.

- after another consonant : very dulled. 

But that's for casual speed speech.

February 20, 2012
20:13
frapy
France

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I have to disagree a little bit with Sébastien, since personnaly, as a French native speaker, I pronounce the 'r' in 'drap' way less dulled than the 'r' in 'barre' (or 'bar', as I don't see nor hear any difference). To me, there is no difference between 'r' and 'rr'.

 

I would say that : 

R at the beginning = R after a vowel > R after a consonant > R at the end of the word.

Example : rapace = carré > drapeau > terre (as the final 'e' is mute)

 

I must add that in some places and in familiar speech, when the last word of the sentence ends in a 'r' sound and that this 'r' is preceded by a consonant, the 'r' might not be pronounced.

Example : T'as pris le cid' ? instead of T'as pris le cidre ? (in formal speech, we would say As-tu pris le cidre ?).

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February 22, 2012
17:41
Sebastien_K

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Also it has sprung to my mind that I actually lengthen the r in the most natural way in the word "mourrai", although I don't have the reflex to do it in the word "pourrai" (same future tense conjugation).

If anything, I guess all this shows that exact pronunciation of r is an extra low priority even among Frenchmen, not to mention for learners !

So as Lingo quoted : "It must remain consistent in all positions, regardless of the other vowels and consonants that may be adjacent to it." and don't bother very much about it, I would say.

February 22, 2012
19:09
Edmundyong
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Merci beaucoup laugh

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