Première classe A1 Breakthrough

Pronunciation: elision and deletion

Écoutez les phrases et choisissez la lettre qui est remplacée par l’apostrophe « ' ». Consultez l’aide.
Listen to the sentences and choose the letter that is replaced with the apostrophe " ' ". Check the help section.
Cochez la ou les bonnes réponses Help on how to respond the exercice
Tu vois l'infirmière ? 
Elision of "e"Elision of "a" Elision of "i"
J’ai mal à la tête.
Elision of "e" Elision of "a" Elision of "i"
Elle a mal à l’œil droit.
Elision of "e" Elision of "a" Elision of "i"
Pourquoi est-ce que Christophe ne parle pas ? Parce qu'il est malade.
Elision of "e" Elision of "a" Elision of "i"
S'il a de la fièvre, il doit voir le docteur.
Elision of "e" Elision of "a"Elision of "i"
nbOk item (s) out of nb selected correctly
Watch out !
Well done !
Conception: Geneviève Briet, Catholic University of Louvain
Published on 02/04/2013 - Modified on 13/12/2019

Pronunciation / Elision and Deletion

The elision

In French, it's difficult to hear the boundaries between words because the pronunciation of the final consonant of a word can be combined with the first vowel of the following word. 
In a group of words grammatically combined, the final vowel (most often "e," "a," sometimes "i," "u") of the first word is deleted before the word that begins with a vowel. The elided vowel is shown by writing an apostrophe: " ' ".
For pronunciation, the consonant that precedes the elided vowel forms a syllable with the vowel of the following word:

l'infirmier, l'infirmière, l'ophtalmologue, l’œil, l'oreille, l'homme, l'hôpital,...  un infirmier / une infirmière / un ophtalmologue / un œil / une oreille / un homme / un hôpital

But in the plural form:

les infirmiers, les infirmières, les ophtalmologues, les yeux, les oreilles, les hommes, les hôpitaux.

The elided vowel is most often an "e" (le, ce, me, je, te, se, ne, de, que, parce que, puisque, lorsque, jusque...), also an "a" (la) and an "i," in the structure si + il -> s'il.


In certain words that are used often, and only when spoken in an informal situation, vowels or consonants may be deleted.    - Deletion of [y] in "tu" before a vowel:

Tu en veux ? -> T'en veux ?

- Deletion of [l] in "il(s)":

"Il y a" > "Y a"

"Il n'y a rien" > "Y a rien"

"Il n'y a pas de chemin." > "Y a pas de chemin."

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