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I.-THE ALPHABET. ACCENTS, AND OTHER MARKS.

PARTS OF SPEECH. 1. Alphabet.-The French Alphabet consists of 26 letters, the same as the English.

A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J, K, L, M, N, O, P, a, b, c, d, e, f, g, h, i, j, k, l, m, n, o, p,

Q, R, S, T, U, V, W, X, Y, Z.
q, r, s, t, u, v, w, x, y, z.

W is used only in foreign words.
The names of the French letters are given on p. 4.
The letters are divided into Vowels and Consonants.

The Vowels are a, e, i, o, u, y. The remaining letters are Consonants.

2. Accents. There are three accents, which are placed over vowels :

1. The acute ( ), placed only over e: as, été.
2. The grave () placed over a, e, u: as, , près, .
3. The circumflex (^) placed over all the vowels excepty:

as, âme, rêve, ile, ôter, mûr. 3. Other marks. (1.) The Apostrophe ('), showing that a vowel has been

dropped: as l'or instead of le or; l'âme instead of

la âme ; l'histoire instead of la histoire. (2.) The Cedilla, a sign like a comma placed under c (before

a, 0, and u), thus ç, giving c the sound of s, as reçu. (3.) The Diæresis, or Trema (“), placed over a vowel,

showing that this vowel must be pronounced distinct

from the preceding vowel: as haïr, noël. (4.) The Hyphen, connecting two words: as, a-t-il. 4. Genders.—There are two Genders, Masculine and Feminine.

FR. P. R

B

5. Numbers.—There are two numbers, Singular and Plural.

6. Parts of Speech. There are nine parts of speech in the French language : 1. Article.

4. Pronoun. 7. Preposition. 2. Substantive, or Noun. 5. Verb.

8. Conjunction. 3. Adjective.

6. Adverb. 9. Interjection.

â long

II.-PRONUNCIATION. The Pronunciation of French can only be learned properly from a master, but a few rules may be of some help.*

SIMPLE VOWELS.
Examples.

English Sounds.
a short
la, the

like a in arm. âme, soul

broader than a in arm, but not so

broad as in awe. e short

like e in her. é accented été, been

somewhat like a in ale, only shorter. lê long être, to be

like a in air. i, y short ici, here; y, there somewhat like ee in sheep, but shorter. î long gîte, a home

like ee in sheep. o short comme, as

between o and u in bond and bun. dôme, dome

like o in comb. du, of the

No similar sound in English. Pro

nounce with the lips forward, but not quite closed, and the tongue kept away from the teeth.

le, the

ô long

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ai au eau ei eu vu ou

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COMPOUND VOWELS AND NASAL SOUNDS.
faire, to do like ai in air
haut,f high

eau, water

cuf, egg

like o in comb reine, queen like ai in air heure, hour

like e in her, the

lips more apart clou, nail

like oo in cool un, a no similar sound. Utter, with a greater effort

the sound u, from the pit of the stomach, and convey it through the nose, taking care to keep the tougue down, in order to avoid the sound of the n.

un, um

* The Rules for pronunciation are from Professor Merlet's “Treatise on Pronunciation. + The consonants in French words printed in Italics are not pronounced.

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