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French Language Lessons: The Alphabet

Steve Cohen

Occasionally, you may need to spell a word or record the spelling of a word in French. You may wish to spell your name when making a restaurant reservation or perhaps write down the spelling of a French word or name spoken to you. The table below indicates how to pronounce each letter name and gives the standard associated word used for clarification, similar to the American "Able, Baker, Charlie, etc." Start by learning to spell your name! You can listen to the lesson.

Notes on Pronunciation

French words tend to be accented lightly on the last syllable or the last syllable of a group of words. In rare instances for emphasis or where this is not the case, an accented syllable will be indicated by ALL CAPS. Liaisons are indicated by red, italicized initial consonants (e.g. "Puis-je vous aider?" pronounced as "pwee-zhuh voo zeh-day"). See Guide to Transliteration for more information.

L’Alphabet (The Alphabet)

a ah Anatole
b bay Berthe
c say Célestin
d day Désiré
e uh Eugène
f ehf François
g zhay Gaston
h ahsh Henri
i ee Irma
j zhee Joseph
k kah Kléber
l ehl Louis
m ehm Marcel
n ehn Nicolas
o oh Oscar
p pay Pierre
q kew Quintal
r ehr Raoul
s ehs Suzanne
t tay Thérèse
u ew Ursule
v vay Victor
w doo-bluh-VAY William
x eeks Xavier
y ee-GREHK Yvonne
z zehd Zoé


You can hear this lesson being spoken.

Download MP3 soundtrack: fr_alphabet.mp3 (1.23mb)
Click on the link to play the sound file (it takes a few minutes to download). Right click to download the file to save on your computer.

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