Je becomes j' with verbs beginning with a vowel (elision)

Look at these two examples:

Je suis grand.
I am tall.

J'ai vingt ans.
I am twenty.

J'habite à Londres.       

I live in London.

 

Notice that the pronoun je ('I' in English) becomes j' when used in front of verbs beginning with a vowel (a, e, i, o, or u) or a silent 'h'.

This contraction changes the pronunciation and is called elision.

Learn more about these related French grammar topics

Examples and resources

J'ai vingt ans.
I am twenty.


Je suis grand.
I am tall.


J'habite à Londres.       

I live in London.


J'aime les bonbons.
I like sweets.


Q&A Forum 3 questions, 4 answers

If Je becomes j' with verbs beginning with a vowel..

Then how come an example is ‘J’habite à Londres?’

Asked 2 months ago
CécileKwiziq language super starCorrect answer

Hi Ryan, 

Well spotted ...if you re-read the lesson you will see that the elision happens before vowels or a silent -h ( also known as -h aspirate) which means it behaves as if it wasn’t there at all....

This is the case for - J’habite à Londres.

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How to change je suis to j

Asked 7 years ago
AurélieKwiziq language super starCorrect answer
Bonjour !

"suis" doesn't start with a vowel, so you won't need to contract "je" here : it will always be "je suis".

However, you will use j' with verbs like : avoir, aimer, habiter, entendre, écouter, oublier, inventer, utiliser ...

I hope that's helpful!
À bientôt !
i understand now,thank you madam

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J'ai neuf ans

Asked 11 years ago
LauraKwiziq language super star
I find that hard to believe, but the grammar is perfect. :-)

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