How to say C'est?


I just started the french Duolingo course since I took french in high school and wanted to relearn it. I also started using the TinyCards add-on and I noticed something.

The voice is pronouncing C'est like 'See-eh', while when I google it (and what I remember from my class since this is a basic word), is to pronounce it 'seh' or 'say'

Which is correct?

August 31, 2017


The ce + est contraction (C'est) means "it is" or "that is" in French.
It's pronounced (sɛ) with the ɛ sound of the word ɛgg.

August 31, 2017

So as the wonderful Speir_ has said, you use the the ɛ sound of the word ɛgg.

You might also be interested in a fun book I also like, which is written by Mike Ellis, called "French Slanguage", published by Gibbs Smith.
It is designed to be "A fun visual guide to french terms and phrases".
It uses illustrations and fun memory tricks to help you with your pronunciation in the early stages of your French learning.

In this book the illustration for C'est is a talking bubble, like you see in cartoons, and the hint is to think of pronouncing it as most English speakers would pronounce the word "say", but said very in a very short way. Not in a "drawl" that quite a few English speakers say "say:

This is also why the example by Speir_ is so good. As they are also using IPA symbols in their description. You may also find this discussion interesting : about the sounds of French.

This is a good youtube , that talks more about C'est .
It is well worth watching.

Do others have recommendations for other resources about this issue of C'est ?

August 31, 2017

I haven't seen this before, but I'll be sure to check it out, thanks! In this link, the sentence uses the "ce + est" contraction:

August 31, 2017

didn't know that :) :)

August 31, 2017

Here is a link to a great resource for pronunciation:

It works for many languages. You enter the word you want to hear. Native speakers pronounce the word, and in most cases there are also examples of the word used in one or more sentences. The database of words is very large. I have not yet found a French word that doesn't have an entry.

August 31, 2017

truely, your answer is in your question. c'est = say

August 31, 2017

I always use 'say'.

September 2, 2017
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