Do you sound the m in faim. It sounds like it is silent?

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Paul

Kwiziq community member

5 October 2018

3 replies

Do you sound the m in faim. It sounds like it is silent?

This relates to:
Avoir faim / soif = To be hungry / thirsty -

Chris

Kwiziq community member

5 October 2018

5/10/18

Yes, it is silent.

Tom

Kwiziq community member

7 October 2018

7/10/18

This is not quite the whole picture. While it is true that the 'm' in 'faim' is not sounded as a classic 'm', it does have a determining effect on the pronunciation of the word.

Consider the following words: 'fait' & 'faim'. The 't' in 'fait' is truly silent and the word is pronounced¿[fɛ] If the 'm' in 'faim' were truly silent then both words would sound identical. In fact the 'm' in 'faim' causes a nasalisation of the sound and thus 'faim' is pronounced [fɛ̃].

Hope this helps.

Chris

Kwiziq community member

15 October 2018

15/10/18

Hi Tom, thanks for pointing this out. I interpret "silent" to mean that the letter in question is not sounded. In this sense the "m" in "faim" is silent. That it still influences the pronounciation of the word as a whole is, of course, true.

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