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The charts below show the way in which the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) represents French language pronunciations in resource articles. For a guide to adding IPA characters to resource articles, see {{IPA-fr}}, {{IPAc-fr}} and Resource: Manual of Style/Pronunciation § Entering IPA characters.

French has no word-level stress so stress marks should not be used in transcribing French words. See French phonology and French orthography for a more thorough look at the sounds of French.

IPA Examples English approximation
b bon about
d deux, grande today
f faire, vif festival
? garçon, longue again
k corps, avec sky
l laisser, possible, seul law
m même moo
n nous, bonne no
? gagner, champagne[1] canyon; nothing yet
? camping, funk[2] camping
p père, groupe spy
? regarder, nôtre[3] Guttural R, Scottish English loch, but voiced
s sans, ça, assez sir
? chance shoe
t tout, thé, grand-oncle sty
v vous, wagon, neuf heures vein
z zéro, raison, chose zeal
? jamais, visage measure
j fief, payer, fille, travail, hier yet
w oui, loi, moyen, web, whisky wet
? huit, Puy Huey
Oral vowels
IPA Examples English approximation
a patte, là, femme trap
? pâte, glas[4] bra
e clé, les, chez, aller, pied, journée, et mace
? baie, faite, mettre, renne, crème, peine, violet best
?: fête, mtre, reine, rtre, caisse, presse, Lévesque[4] fairy
? reposer, monsieur, faisons[5] again (often elided, see e muet)
i si, île, régie, pays, fils seat
oe soeur, jeune, club (Europe) bird (British)
ø ceux, jner, queue burn (British)
o saut, haut, bureau, chose, tôt, cône story
? sort, minimum, pomme off
u coup, roue shoot
y tu, sûr, rue roughly like too in Australian English
Nasal vowels
sans, champ, vent, temps, Jean, taon roughly like song; nasalized (Europe) or (Quebec)
vin, impair, pain, daim, plein, Reims, synthèse, sympathique, bien roughly like hang; nasalized (Europe) or (Quebec)
oe? un, parfum[4] roughly like burn; nasalized
son, nom roughly like drawn (Australian); nasalized (France) or (Quebec)
IPA Example Description
. pays [pe.i][6] syllable boundary
? les agneaux [lez?a?o] liaison[7]


  1. ^ In European French, is merging with /nj/, but in Quebec, /?/ is distinguished from /nj/
  2. ^ In European French, is often pronounced []. In Quebec, some speakers merge it with /?/ and some speakers pronounce it exactly as in English.
  3. ^ The French rhotic /?/ is usually uvular, but it varies by region. For example, in Quebec, , and are all used, but nowadays, most speakers pronounce [?].
  4. ^ a b c In Parisian French, /oe?/ is usually merged with //, /?/ is often merged with /a/ and /?:/ is normally merged with /?/. These pairs are always distinguished in Belgian, Swiss and Quebec French.
  5. ^ In French French, while /?/ is phonologically distinct, its phonetic quality tends to coincide with either /ø/ or /oe/.
  6. ^ The syllable break ?.? is used sparingly.
  7. ^ In liaison, the latent final consonant is pronounced before a following vowel sound, but s and x are voiced and pronounced , and d is unvoiced and pronounced .

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