With la liaison facultative, we welcome you to another episode of Learn French with Prof Josh which is the concluding part of the French liaison.
We believe you’ve been trying to master the previous types of liaison that have been treated already.
Reiterating, today, we are considering the 3rd type of the french liaison which is known as La liaison facultative – Optional Liaison.
Well, if you’ve already mastered the obligatory and forbidden liaisons that have been treated in the previous lessons, then you don’t have much problem with the optional liaison because you can decide to or not to make liaison in this case.
If you missed last lesson, click here and you would be directed HERE
Optional liaisons are those which are pronounced in higher registers (levels of formality) and not in lower registers.
Some liaisons in front of a vowel or mute h are optional, so it’s up to you to decide whether to pronounce them or not.
However, that decision matters: more liaisons mean more formal speech, and fewer liaisons obviously mean more informal, possibly even familiar speech.
Here are types of liaisons from most common to least common: even teenagers will usually pronounce the first type of liaison (formal), but very few people will pronounce the last type (informal).
The point here is that whether you make the liaison or not, it doesn’t change anything much except that the former makes your speech more formal and the latter makes it less formal.
N.B: The optional liaison ( la liaison facultative ) occurs between the group of words where “_” is placed and the 2 possible pronunciations are in bracket. Please don’t be confused, are we good? Yeah!
Kindly note that the possible pronunciations in bracket are not in anyway related to transcription.
1. AFTER PLURAL NOUNS
Les hommes_arrivent – The men are coming.
(Layzom zareev OR layzom areev)
Des livres_utiles – useful text books
(dayleevr zewteel OR dayleevr ewteel)
2. BETWEEN TWO-PART VERBAL STRUCTURES OR BETWEEN MODAL VERBS AND MAIN VERBS
Je suis_allé – I went.
(Joeswi zallay OR joeswi allay)
Ils ont_eu – they have had.
(eelzon tew OR eelzon ew)
Je vais_étudier – I am going to studay.
(joevair zaytewdeehay OR joevair aytewdeehay)
Elles veulent_apprendre – They want to learn
(ellveul tapprendr OR ellveul apprendr).
3. PRESENT TENSE OF “ETRE” IN 3RD PERSON SINGULAR FORM + NOUN, ADJECTIVE, or ADVERB
Il est_impossible – It is impossible
(eellair timposseebl OR ellair imposseebl)
Il est_heureux – He is lucky (happy)
(eellir toerow OR ellair oerow)
Il est_ici – He is here.
(eellair tisi OR eellair isi)
4. AFTER MULTI-SYLLABLE ADVERBS and PREPOSITIONS
Assez_utile – Useful enough
(assay zewteel OR assay ewteel)
Tellement_avare – So avaricious/stingy
(tellman tavar OR tellman avar)
Depuis_un an – Since a year
(doepwi zoen an OR doepwi oen an)
5. SOME CONJUNCTIONS
Mais_enfin – But at last
(meh zenfen OR meh enfen)
6. AFTER VERBS
Ils arriveront_à midi
(eelzareevayron tahmidi OR eelzareevayron ah midi)
Elle prend_un livre
(ell pren toen leevr OR ell pren oen leevr)
We have come to the end of our lessons on La liaison française (the french liaison). We hope you’ve been able to gain few things. Don’t forget to ask questions for clarity sake.
Till we meet again next time, don’t stop learning and keep growing in knowledge.
To read the next lesson, click HERE
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Awodirepo Olabayo Joshua, popularly called Profjosh, is a native of Osun state Nigeria, a graduate of French Language and an alumnus of the University of Ibadan, a translator and interpreter (English-French/ French-English), a French language tutor and poem/short stories writer.