Questions tagged [french]

Romance language, official in 29 states, including France, Belgium and Côte d'Ivoire. For non-linguistic questions about the French language, visit our sister site French Language Stack Exchange.

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What is the distribution of the French uvular trill vs uvular fricative?

In French, the most common realizations of the phoneme /r/ are [ʀ] (uvular trill) and [ʁ] (voiced uvular fricative). I am able to consistently distinguish them and produce either, and I'm interested ...
maritsm's user avatar
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Which one would you use "the", "that" or "this"? About English Anaphora

I read a book about French anaphora. In French, there is a distinction between the definite article "le" and the demonstrative "ce", and I wonder if the same usage also applies to ...
Jun Chan's user avatar
-2 votes
1 answer
180 views

Why does the French consonant "b" sound so different from the "b" in the IPA chart (with audio)?

Why does the French consonant "b" sound so different from the "b" in the IPA chart (with audio)? I have compared many IPA chart audios, and the "b" in all IPA charts I ...
Wilks's user avatar
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1 vote
0 answers
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Request for research papers on the definite article systems of French and Italian

Extrapolating from this survey of article systems throughout world languages, the only languages which brought the article system which originated in Ancient Greek to its fullest logical generality ...
Fomalhaut's user avatar
  • 509
1 vote
2 answers
105 views

How to analyze nasal vowels next to nasal consonants

Let's say a language uses two vowels /A/ and /B/ which differ only by one relevant phonological feature [+/- X] such that /A/ is [- X] and /B/ is [+ X]. Now let's say there's a consonant phoneme /C/ ...
Graham H.'s user avatar
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3 votes
0 answers
108 views

How did "y" come to represent the semi-vowel yod /j/ in French orthography?

I went down a bit of a rabbit hole trying to work out where the different sounds of the "y" in English came from. I quickly established that the semi-vowel was originally written with a yogh,...
Muzer's user avatar
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5 votes
0 answers
128 views

Why in the world are French "Paul" and "Paule" distinguished by vowel openness?

Wikipedia lists Paul [pɔl] ('Paul', masculine), vs. Paule [pol] ('Paule', feminine), as a minimal pair of the two mid rounded back vowels of French. What I wonder is, how did it happen that the two ...
trerri's user avatar
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1 answer
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Is the name "Melisande" related to the Latin for "honey", "Mel"?

Some people say "Melisande" is just French Melissa, which ''is'' clearly derived from "mel", but Wikipedia doesn't mention any such thing for Melisande, instead saying that the ...
Malady's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
118 views

Auxilary verb alternation in analytic perfect for French/Italian and German languages [duplicate]

French/Italian and German have a composite past tense (passé composé/passato prossimo/Perfekt) that is formed using either auxiliary verb to be (être/essere/sein) or auxiliary verb to have (avoir/...
Roger V.'s user avatar
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3 votes
1 answer
262 views

When did people realize French has its root in Latin?

By investigating into historical documents like Oaths of Strasbourg and applying the comparative method, modern linguists are able to know French is a Romance language. When the components of ...
jywu's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
355 views

Does the lack of tonsils make pronouncing french sounds harder?

I've had my tonsils removed a long time ago. I'm facing difficulty in pronouncing some sounds that start in throat like the french R. Does the lack of tonsils make it impossible for me produce the ...
Can'tCode's user avatar
2 votes
2 answers
79 views

Is it possible to have a repeated node appear under the same node? (Syntax Tree) [illustration provided]

Please help me understand these syntax trees (French and English). For context we are learning about the representation of movement in syntax trees. From my understanding, we'd have to use an X' under ...
miaoup's user avatar
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0 votes
0 answers
33 views

Is there any free API that can translate from French to IPA? [duplicate]

I have invented a language that actually is just French but each phoneme is replaced by another one. So to build an application that can translate from French to that language, I need the phonetics of ...
nanto's user avatar
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5 votes
1 answer
980 views

Does French retain more Celtic words than English does?

English has very few words left from the Ancient British. I am wondering if the language of the Gauls suffered much the same fate, or whether there are significantly more Celtic substrate words ...
Scott's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
549 views

Reason for silent letters in languages

Why are there silent letters in languages? I understand that there may be not any reply to this question. But if there is one, I am curious. Like in French: Je ne parle pas français. Why is it not ...
Jane B.'s user avatar
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4 votes
0 answers
173 views

Why French Adjectives Uses BAGS

In French, most adjectives are positioned behind the noun e.g. vache bleue médecin étrange orange énevrant But sometimes you have an adjective following BAGS -- the adjective describes beauty, age, ...
MeltedStatementRecognizing's user avatar
0 votes
2 answers
147 views

Is it useful to render French /i y u/ and /j ɥ w/ as allophones?

Because /i y u/ behave so differently to the other French vowels /ɛ ɑ œ ɔ/, which all have tense and nasal variants, while also being symmetrical to the semivowels /j ɥ w/, it is attractive to render ...
Masimatutu's user avatar
4 votes
0 answers
109 views

French language : is it possible to use a possessive adjective earlier than the name it refers to? [closed]

I have posted the same question on the French language Stackexchange, and I have been referred to post it here too. A phrase said by Mireille left me dumbfounded: Bénédicte et ses filles ont ...
Johan Buret's user avatar
-1 votes
3 answers
162 views

Some languages take more words to say the same thing. Is there a reliable source for this?

I am working on a way for scientists in my field (archaeology) to evaluate how many words they have published per days they have spent doing fieldwork. Some people do lots of fieldwork, then don't ...
Pertinax's user avatar
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0 answers
139 views

French V-to-T movement and modifier

I am struggling with this question that concerns the location of a modifier in a French sentence. How would you account for the last sentence? Thank you in advance.
user37414's user avatar
2 votes
0 answers
77 views

Are there any more optimal tactile alphabets than Braille?

Sorry if this is the wrong stackexchange to ask this. Consider how QWERTY was the first keyboard layout, but isn't nearly optimal (e.g. Dvorak is much better and used overwhelmingly by top speed-...
chausies's user avatar
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0 answers
114 views

Why did the Latin word marmor became French marbre (which is in present day English marble)?

I would like to know what process suffered the Latin word marmor when it was borrowed in French and became marbre. I know that the process from French marbre to English marble is dissimilation, i.e. ...
user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
89 views

Do we have evidence of the transition from -mentum to -ment?

Several English words end in -ment: augment, document, movement, moment, segment, etc. According to several dictionaries, the English -ment suffix is in many cases traced to the French -ment, which in ...
Michael's user avatar
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0 votes
2 answers
182 views

French & Spanish Accusative & Dative cases like German [closed]

I started learning French a couple of months back. My German proficiency is at B2 level (CEFRL). I wanted to know if French also has the different Accusative & Dative forms for Personal Pronouns, ...
Python_user's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
120 views

About phonological history of Middle French

Schwa in hiatus dwindled in French a few centuries ago. Compare the example "saputum > sëu > su" at Wikipedia/History of French Does anyone know WHEN this sound change occurred? I ...
David Harlev's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
1k views

Why does the Portuguese language sound similar to French language to me?

I thought Portuguese would sound very close to Spanish. However, to me, it sounds more like French? Why is that?
user366312's user avatar
11 votes
5 answers
3k views

Which language is more complex, English or French? Is it even possible to objectively measure a language's complexity?

OK, so I'm a native English speaker who learned French as a teenager and I have a friend who is French and learned English as a teenager (so the opposite). The other day he was telling me how easy ...
Franglishman24's user avatar
-1 votes
1 answer
271 views

is my Pronounciation of [ɤ] and french nasal vowels and [ɲ] correct?

Right now I'm trying to learn how to pronounce different vowel sounds in IPA and i wonder if I'm Pronouncing [ɤ] right. ɤ I've been trying to learning French for a long time and I wonder if my ...
LinguisticsFanatic's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
113 views

Deviation in colloquial speech of nasal vowels in French

Since coming to France I have noted a deviation of the nasal vowels pronunciation among native speakers from what IPA chart suggests. For example -en and -em are pronounced more akin to the nasal ...
X HOxha's user avatar
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2 votes
4 answers
348 views

Why words in many romance languages don't have more than one part of speech, unlike words in English

I have recently just realized that in English, sometimes the same word will have different part of speech depends on the way you pronounce it. For example, record can be a noun or a verb depends on ...
Yan Zhuang's user avatar
5 votes
1 answer
794 views

Why do object pronouns precede the predicate in French, while R-expressions follow it?

How to explain the situation in French where an object pronoun needs to precede the predicate, while an object R-expression stands to the right of the predicate? Here is an example: a. Il le regarde. (...
Buffoon's user avatar
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8 votes
1 answer
268 views

Why are French nouns in -eur feminine when their latin origin in -or is masculine?

The suffix -eur in modern French typically gives feminine nouns: erreur, ferveur, torpeur, fureur. (Confusingly there's also -(a)teur which gives masculine nouns, but it seems etymologically separate)....
zale's user avatar
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1 vote
2 answers
237 views

In English the suffix sometimes changes the stress pattern of the rest of the word. Is English the only language with this system?

TELephone, telePHONic, teLEphony. PHOTograph, photoGRAphic,photOgraphy. biOLogy, bioLOGical. The suffix changes the stress pattern of the rest of the word. Is English the only language with this ...
Matthew Christopher Bartsh's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
44 views

Where can I find a corpus of sentence with the resulting emotion in french?

I'm working on a sentiment analysis program and I need to validate it using a corpus of sentence with the linked emotions. I need to perform this task on a french corpus and I can't find any on the ...
J.erome's user avatar
  • 101
1 vote
1 answer
137 views

How long were Old Frankish dialects spoken in modern France?

How long were the Germanic dialects commonly subsumed under the term "Frankish" spoken by Frankish people in Northern Gaul, and how long did it take until they were completely supplanted by ...
The Thin Whistler's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
313 views

Why are native English speakers convinced that English language is a Romance language? [closed]

Most people I've know so far in the USA are always saying that learning Latin would be really easy because, since English comes from Latin, it cannot be a hard thing to do, and they really get shocked ...
Pablo Velasco's user avatar
2 votes
0 answers
231 views

Origin of English's phrasal possessive

This site claimed that the phrasal possessive in English came from French influence, while the synthetic possessive is Germanic. Germanic Pattern: the king’s son - cf. German "des Königs Sohn&...
user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
92 views

Adoption of another language by a community

I am interested in conditions under which a community adopts (or does not adopt) another language, even though this community is sufficiently isolated to be able to continue the use of its previous ...
Roger V.'s user avatar
  • 982
6 votes
0 answers
178 views

Just how silent is the French e muet?

I know the e muet is usually considered silent. That being said, it is still often pronounced in songs and poetry (famously, in the Marseillaise). This is completely contrary to the situation in ...
Gaussler's user avatar
  • 161
4 votes
1 answer
149 views

Is it possible to produce a list of syntactic rules for a language?

I recently started a new job as an applied linguist engineer and one of the first tasks I was ask to do was to provide a list of syntactic rules that can produce French sentences (for an ...
user30830's user avatar
7 votes
2 answers
1k views

Evidence that ø and œ are separate phonemes in French?

Are there any minimal pairs between ø and œ or other evidence that these are separate phonemes? I have been studying French, and so far it seems like ø is found in open syllables and œ is found in ...
Theme's user avatar
  • 247
0 votes
1 answer
190 views

Why the French 'noir' has perspired in so many languages?

Having a look at wiki's page about Nordic noir genre, I realised that this same word 'noir' is used in many other languages (even in for ex. Farsi with نوآر). Someone has an idea why this word has ...
Sebino's user avatar
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3 votes
1 answer
318 views

Is h↓ the correct IPA representation of the ingressive "fast gasp", meaning "uh-huh", in French?

Spoken French has two ingressive forms of "yes". One is "ouais" [wɛ↓], equivalent to "yep" in English. The other is a "pure" ingressive sound, described ...
Scott Deerwester's user avatar
6 votes
0 answers
146 views

Term for non-homograph homophone synonyms?

In Japanese, 熱い and 暑い are both read atsui and both mean 'hot'. The former pertains to an object (e.g. hot coffee) and the latter to weather. In French 'cuissot' and 'cuisseau' have the same ...
Mathieu Bouville's user avatar
2 votes
5 answers
11k views

Is there a French IPA translator for free?

I am looking for a completely free French IPA translator as I'm currently attempting to learn the language and need help understanding the pronunciation. Looking for a text translator, audio optional
James Smith's user avatar
5 votes
2 answers
263 views

Adjective position in Provençal (Occitan)

Can anyone tell me the rules for adjective position in Provençal? I know that, like most other Romance languages, most adjectives go after the noun, with some exceptions. But I can't find the exact ...
S.T. Veje's user avatar
  • 121
1 vote
3 answers
9k views

What is a "Phonetic Language"?

Once I've spoke with a friend of mine and I've asked him why in the french language there are so many discrepancies (or incongruities, inconformities...) between the written and the spoken words and ...
user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
139 views

Latin jūs and sūcus, and the words in Romance languages

Why is French jus said to be from Latin jūs or iūs, while Spanish jugo is said to be from the Latin sūcus? I don't know if there's a link between sūcus and jūs, but jus and jugo look like they are ...
Quidam's user avatar
  • 632
2 votes
1 answer
178 views

In X Bar Theory where can "ne" and "pas" be found?

I have read past papers on French negation and it says that it is accepted that the NegP in French is null, and "pas" is specifier to NegP. So what would "ne" be then? I haven't been able to find ...
Smith's user avatar
  • 21
0 votes
3 answers
247 views

Some “linguistic formulas” to translate French texts into English?

I am not sure is it correct to ask my question here or not! I've asked this question here (in MathStackExchange) before! Maybe it is better to see the question there, because it was written ...
Davood's user avatar
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