Paris,France,Une girafe,Un ours (= a bear)

A lot of my students battle via its pronunciation. It’s also harder than finding out how to pronounce “u” vs “ou” in French.

You are watching: How to pronounce the r in french

You deserve to learn French for fifteenager or twenty years and also still not quite acquire it. And I understand that it have the right to be so frustrating!

…But how much does the “correct” pronunciation really matter? And what deserve to you carry out to improve your pronunciation of the French R?

Let’s dive in!

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1) The importance of the French R

In the video leschild, you can hear British actor Daniel Radcliff pronouncing a French sentence. His French “R” sounds are really British… but we still understand him!

The fact is: pronouncing French R perfectly shouldn’t be your major focus when learning French.

You deserve to sheight perfect French and still have trouble via the “R” sound. People will certainly still understand you! It’s not also really an embarrassing mistake, and also it’s not most likely to cause confusion between words.

It’s part of your French accent – and also there’s no shame in that.

If you want to construct relationships with French civilization (and via French culture), you’ll get even more mileage out of mastering the basic French greetings that will make you sound favor more than a “straightforward tourist” in Paris.

…And yet, you’re permitted to feel frustrated by that tricky French “R.”

So, let’s watch just how you have the right to get better at pronouncing it.


The “French R” in this lesboy should quite be dubbed the “Parisian R,” to be hoswarm. An old perkid from l’Alsace (in Eastern France), for example, could stop through a really different accent – and use a various “R” sound. But nowadays, French TV and radio usage nearly solely the Parisian accent, which ended up being largely leading in the country.

2) French “R” : just how to exercise your pronunciation

You should lift up the back of your tongue to the roof of your mouth, just in between your difficult palate and your soft palate.

It’s quite similar to the way you’d location your tongue to pronounce the sound — so, you have the right to begin with that sound first! Repeat after me in the video lesboy, via the sound .

Then place a little “gargle” sound instead of the . Your tongue might relocate ago just a tiny bit.

(Remember, it’s the back of your tongue that must stick up! Not the front, choose you do with the English “R.”)

And currently you deserve to try pronouncing the French “R”.

Paris.France.Le grand also ours dorlote sa girafe préférée.

See more: In Fat Pig, What Does Helen Do For A Living? Study Guide For Fat Pig

(= The big bear cuddles its favorite girafe.)

Practicing mindcompletely is the first action to much better pronunciation, so store practicing whenever before you deserve to. Don’t be afrhelp to sound ridiculous!

Later, you deserve to attempt to “mellow” out that gargle sound – because the genuine French “R” in daily conversation is less harsh than the ones that Edith Piaf sings, for instance.

Learn even more tips and also insights around spoken French pronunciation with my other lessons:

– French sounds: How to pronounce (and also hear) “ou” vs. “u”– Simple yet reliable tips to boost your French accent