French For Beginners
par Olivier Malet


Chapter One


Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4
Chapter 5
Chapter 6
Chapter 7
Chapter 8
Chapter 9
Chapter 10
Chapter 11
Chapter 12
Chapter 13
Chapter 14
Chapter 15
Chapter 16
Chapter 17
Chapter 18
Chapter 19
Chapter 20
Chapter 21
Chapter 22
Chapter 23
Chapter 24
Chapter 25
Chapter 26
Chapter 27
Chapter 28



English and French use the same alphabet; even better, English and French have in common several hundred words that have the same spelling and meaning in both languages.

Here are one hundred examples!

rage, bandit, banquet, Bible, bizarre, boulevard, avenue, bracelet, budget, capable, capital, torture, tradition, train, triple, type, union, urgent, vacant, vague, vengeance, zone, information, conversation, menace, minute, municipal, muscle, nation, national, lion, indulgent, installation, inspection, instrument, grain, horizon, imitation, humble, final, fortune, golf, motion, existence, durable, date, destruction, construction, dispute, docile, contact, concentration, cage, canal, canon, cigarette, client, code, colonel, combat, art, article, aspect, pigeon, portrait, biscuit, circuit, piano, rail, rural, air, plateau, change, orange, tribunal, taxes, fruits, assassin, absence, accent, accident, accusation, acquisition, action, adoption, affection, agent, agriculture, album, alliance, allusion, ambition, amusement, anecdote, angle, animal, aptitude, volume, tunnel, style, sublime.

You might assume from this that you have less to learn than you anticipated. In a way it is true for if you did see these words in writing you would guess correctly their meaning. However if you only heard them you probably would not recognize them because their French pronunciation is very different from the English one.

> Now listen to the following words and see (or rather hear) for yourself:

Durable, date, destruction, muscle, change, national, lion, indulgent, installation, amusement, anecdote, angle, combat, art.

Therefore you need to be able to associate a spelling - you might be familiar with - with a new sound. In this book we are going to use terms such as sound, syllable, stress and intonation. It is important you understand exactly what they mean.

What is a sound?

In languages there are two kinds of sounds consonant sounds (p,t,k,b,d,g,f,v,s,z, etc…) and vowel sounds ( a e i o u ).

A word like in has two sounds: (the vowel /i/ + the consonant /n/),

bean has three sounds (/b/ + /ea/ + /n/),

pinned has four sounds (/p/ + /i/+/n/ + /d/),

skilled has five sounds (/s/ + /k/ +/i/ + /l/ + /d/)


previous | next


French at HKU
copyright 2006-Olivier Malet - All rights reserved
The University of Hong Kong