Talk:Quebec French phonology

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The status of /ɔ/[edit]

At least around the Quebec City area, I have a strong feeling that in closed syllables, /ɔ/ is unrounded into [ʌ] and in word-final open syllables (following a non-standard pronounciation), it is retracted to [ɒ]. I know that I pronounce ex. "botte" as [bʌt] and "bas" as [bɒ].

My phonetics teacher agreed with me but the problem is that I can't find any article that does. Anyone has any input?

Recordings needed[edit]

What I'd appreciate a lot is if two speakers, one Quebecois and the other French, read and recorded a sample text for comparison. ______________

It would be helpful if the article weren't so jargonized. I find it very hard to glean useful information here. It seems to be written for professional linguists. Nine999999999s 20:47, 13 January 2007 (UTC)nine999999999s

actually, as a native speaker and a university professor of linguistics, I can attest that there is a bunch of non sense or ill-formulated stuff in there. poorly documented as well. needs a MAJOR clean-up 05:10, 11 February 2007 (UTC)

/ɛ/ and /e/[edit]

Even if Parisian/Metropolitan French merges some of the French vowels, I don't agree when it is said that it merges /ɛ/ and /e/. Apart from merging the declensions -ai/-ais (for the future and the conditional tenses, both pronounced /ɛ/), we can still distinguish "ses" and "sait". Transcendency (talk) 23:07, 28 January 2008 (UTC)

Maybe some clarification is in order. I don't see any part saying that there's a complete merger, just some instances where the open vowel becomes more tense. — Ƶ§œš¹ [aɪm ˈfɻɛ̃ⁿdˡi] 23:14, 28 January 2008 (UTC)
Someone originally put a distinction between /ɜː/ and /ɛ/. I removed /ɜː/ because it's not a phoneme in either French or Canadian French, and replaced it with /e/. /ɛ/ and /e/ are often interchangeable (if not merged) in various Hexagonal French dialects, although some do retain the difference, most don't, but the distinction is still strong in Québec French. Now that I look back, it might have been intended to distinguish /ɛ/ and /ɛː/ instead (although /ɛː/ was never a phoneme in Hexagonal French). But to be honest, the whole first line is kind of ugly, and doesn't actually introduce the topic, so I'd say remove it (or incorporate it elsewhere), and create a better summary for the article. - Io Katai (talk) 05:17, 29 January 2008 (UTC)

/d͡z t͡s/ vs. /dz ts/[edit]

I understand the reason for the change, since such symbols as ʦ and ʣ are now not considered standard IPA, however I do not believe that changing them to [dz] and [ts] is a better alternative. For one, both /d/ and /t/ affricate before the front high vowels [y] and [i], meaning that they're entirely allophonic to the underlying /d/ and /t/. I think the distinction should be kept in order not to confuse [pə] from [pə.tsi], which is generally how the sequence /ts/ (and /dz/) is handled at the exception of word-initially (e.g. tsar). Compare words such as trente-six, where the sequence [ts] can further be reduced to [s] in some speakers. And then you'd also have to consider the assimilation of loan words, whereas most speakers will completely omit final plurals in English words, some others (usually closer to the Ontarian border) won't hesitate to pronounce final stop-fricative sequences (e.g. chats [tʃats]) - Io Katai (talk) 03:03, 21 May 2008 (UTC)

That makes sense. User:Jasy jatere has claimed here that it is only slight affrication and [ts] and [dz] may be a better representation. — Ƶ§œš¹ [aɪm ˈfɻɛ̃ⁿdˡi] 03:25, 21 May 2008 (UTC)

Some French people pronounce [maʁd͡zi] for the word mardi. Listen here Media:Fr-mardi-fr-ouest.ogg. Fête (talk) 17:28, 12 December 2012 (UTC)

To me this sounds more like [maʁdz͡i], with [z] and [i] blended together (much like in some pronunciations of Swedish /iː/). Peter238 (talk) 00:52, 18 October 2015 (UTC)


Why Québécois pronounce /faɪ̯t/ instead of /fɛːt/ for the word fête ? Fête —Preceding undated comment added 23:05, 13 July 2012 (UTC)

I'm not sure what sort of answer you're looking for beyond the tautology that they pronounce it that way because they pronounce it that way. — Ƶ§œš¹ [ãːɱ ˈfɹ̠ˤʷɪ̃ə̃nlɪ] 01:39, 14 July 2012 (UTC)

Pronounce "fight" for the word fête is a bad pronunciation ? Fête (talk) 14:02, 9 October 2012 (UTC)

Keep in mind that this is not a page for general discussion about Quebec French pronunciation. Questions are appropriate here only insofar as they directly concern the content and structure of the article. Is your question aimed at improving the article? If so, how? CapnPrep (talk) 14:46, 9 October 2012 (UTC)

In Quebec City, the word fête is pronounced /fɛːt/ or /faɛ̯t/ ? Fête (talk) 13:49, 20 October 2012 (UTC)

Fête comes from feste. The s is vocalised into i (very common sound shift in romance languages), but dissapeared alltogheter in some dialects such as Parisian French. Québec French, including around Québec (city), is more conservative and kept the vocalised sound. You'll find the exact same phonetic evolution for words such as tête (head), bête (beast), etc. Correjon (talk) 22:45, 17 February 2013 (UTC) (<-native speaker of Québec French)

Diphtongization is not standard ? Teachers have the right to pronounce "fight" for the word fête, isn't it ? (talk) 20:53, 11 May 2013 (UTC)

If it's not «standard», you'll hear it everywhere, including in formal contexts such as teaching or job interview. Some (or most?) newsreader in «news French» drop the diphthongs. Correjon (talk) 04:03, 13 May 2013 (UTC)

This article could do with more examples.[edit]

I don't relate well to discussions of phonemes in isolation, and I expect there are others like me. (talk) 05:52, 16 July 2012 (UTC)

That's a good suggestion. Choice examples often make these phonology articles clearer. — Ƶ§œš¹ [ãːɱ ˈfɹ̠ˤʷɪ̃ə̃nlɪ] 15:51, 16 July 2012 (UTC)


Kung-fu is often pronounced /kɔŋfu/. Fête —Preceding undated comment added 12:19, 20 August 2012 (UTC)

I was wondering about that. Thanks. — Ƶ§œš¹ [ãːɱ ˈfɹ̠ˤʷɪ̃ə̃nlɪ] 15:23, 21 August 2012 (UTC)

Nasal vowels[edit]

I always heard /œ̃/ is realized as [œ̃˞]. Fête (talk) 22:46, 19 December 2012 (UTC)

The realisation of the suffix "-eur"[edit]

It has been brought to my attention that "-eur" is quite often realised [a˞] and possibly even [œ̞˞] (both r-coloured vowels) in Quebec French. I don't have any evidence to reference apart from anecdote and in its example of the pronunciation of the word "dépanneur" [depanœ̞˞].[1] What do you think? - Nath.king93 (talk) 09:58, 25 September 2014 (UTC)

It's not a rhotacized vowel but the fricative becomes an uvular approximant at the end of a word. Grumpylaw (talk) 03:47, 1 October 2014 (UTC)

Lax vowels /ɪ/ and /ʏ/[edit]

These lax vowels seem inclinded to centralise to [ɪ̈] and [ʊ̈] respectively. Again I have nothing more than anecdote and[2][3] as references. I still think they're in complementary distribution but sometimes they seem more centralised — Nath.king93 (talk) 02:33, 26 September 2014 (UTC)

That may be so, but we can't include this information in the article without a reliable source to back it up. Peter238 (talk) 23:01, 17 October 2015 (UTC)

Reorganization of diphthong section[edit]

The diphthong section lists a lot of diphthongized realizations of long vowels, and could use some reorganization. Here I'll see if making a table will help. The precise placement of some of the diphthongs should probably be adjusted, but this is only a preliminary attempt at classification. I've used the vowel height of the corresponding vowels in the French of France for all but the nasalized vowels.

front, central back
unrounded rounded
close [ɪi̯] [ʏy̯] [ʊu̯]
open-mid [aɪ̯] [aœ̯] [ɑɔ̯]


One thing that seems to be missing is the nasalized rounded mid front vowel, as in un. It's hard to hear in the sample recording whether this is diphthongized, but I presume it is, like the other nasalized vowels, if it isn't merged with the nasalized unrounded mid front vowel, as it is in the French of France. — Eru·tuon 00:04, 7 December 2014 (UTC)

@Erutuon: About time I replied too. I'm the one who provided the sample recording. I do not pronounce [œ̃] with a diphthong, I rhotacize it to [œ̃˞] as is transcribed. Prior research usually transcribed a diphthongized variant as [œ̃ỹ] (as in prior revisions of this article), but I think that nowadays (don't quote me on this) most Quebecers speaking informally rhotacize the vowel as I do. (talk) 02:15, 16 February 2016 (UTC)
@Erutuon: Do you by any chance know the source on which the Diphthongization section is based? Because Reinke (2005) uses a somewhat different notation to what we have here (see e.g. page 21, on which e.g. /ɛː/ is described as having diphthongal variants [aɛ̯ ~ ae̯ ~ ai̯], rather than [aɪ̯ ~ æɪ̯]). Peter238 (talk) 22:32, 14 September 2015 (UTC)
Peter238 Hmm, about time I responded. I don't know where the diphthong variants listed in the article came from. I suspect a lot of it is original research, because I've noticed so many changes to the IPA in that section in the past year. — Eru·tuon 00:39, 18 October 2015 (UTC)


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