The charts below show the way in which the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) represents French pronunciations in Wikipedia articles. It is important to note that the IPA symbols used for vowels in the following table and in articles are the symbols conventionally used in French dictionaries, but are actually based on the pronunciation of European French of more than 100 years ago and no longer accurately represent current pronunciation. See the footnotes for more details.
English approximations are in some cases very approximate, and only intended to give a general idea of the pronunciation. See French phonology for a more thorough look at the sounds. In particular, English vowels are often diphthongs, while the French vowels are not.
- ^ The French /l/ is clear, similar to the pronunciation in Spanish and German but unlike the dark /l/ of American English.
- ^ In European French, /ɲ/ is often pronounced [nj] .
- ^ The French rhotic varies from region to region, but is usually uvular. The more common pronunciations include a voiced uvular fricative [ʁ], a uvular trill [ʀ], and [χ] (after voiceless consonants).
- ^ In European French, /ŋ/ is often pronounced [ŋɡ].
- ^ /x/ may be replaced by /ʁ/.
- ^ In European French, /ɑ/ is normally replaced by /a/.
- ^ In European French, /ɛː/ is normally replaced by /ɛ/. In Quebec French, /ɛː/ is often pronounced [aɛ̯].
- ^ In French, /ə/ is pronounced with some lip rounding [ɵ̞]; for a number of speakers, it is also more front and may even be phonetically identical to the vowel of neuf [nœf]. In European French, [ə] is rounded and fronted, making it phonetically similar to [ø].
- ^ In European French at least, /ɔ/ is partly unrounded, leading it to have somewhat of the quality of nut.
- ^ In European French, /ɑ̃/ is actually pronounced [ɒ̃], with rounding. In Quebec French, /ɑ̃/ is pronounced [ã].
- ^ In European French, /ɛ̃/ is actually pronounced [æ̃]. In Quebec French, /ɛ̃/ is pronounced [ẽ].
- ^ In European French, /œ̃/ is normally replaced by /ɛ̃/, pronounced [æ̃].
- ^ In European French, /ɔ̃/ is actually pronounced [õ].
- ^ Stress falls on the last full syllable of a phrase, except in emphatic speech.
- ^ Used sparingly.
- ^ Latent final consonant is pronounced before a following vowel sound.