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Post Posted:: July 15th, 2016, 1:10 am 
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chymocles wrote:
Thanks, Sonia, for your willingness to discuss grammar; I haven't had anyone to talk to about it for 50 years. On the other hand I hate to ask you to spend time on it.


oh don't get me even started. I LOVE grammar (yes, I'm that weird :roll: ) but as I said before, many things in French I do by instinct, just from saying it in daily conversations, without really thinking about grammar, so sometimes it's hard to explain

Quote:
Just one more query about this "ne . . . plus" matter, though: I was not aware that "Tu peux garder mon livre. Je n'en veux plus" was correct; I thought it had to be "Je ne le veux plus." I was under the misapprehension that "en" always meant "of it."


both are correct. You could say, I was implying in my sentence: "Je ne veux plus de ce livre" which is perfectly good French, and this is then contracted into "n'en veux plus". I couldn't really say now whether maybe one would be more literary and the other more colloquial, but both are correct.

Quote:
But is can also mean "of it" or "of them" in certain circumstances, so would the following also be correct, but with an "-s" at the end: "J'ai trop d'outiles pour le bois. Je n'en veux plus" (i.e., I want no more of them")? My reason for thinking so is that in the second sentence "plus" is clearly the direct object of "veux."


If you here really want to convey: “I have too many tools, and I don't want to buy even more of them”, then your sentence is not correct.
The way you wrote it: "J'ai trop d'outils pour le bois. Je n'en veux plus." means the same like my book example: “I have too many tools for the wood. I don't want them anymore." and “plus” would have mute s at the end, because it means “not anymore”.
To say: “I don't want even more of them" you have to say: “Je n’en veux PAS plus” and yes, there you would pronounce the –s again, because it means “more of”.

Hope I am not confusing you… :?

Sonia


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Post Posted:: July 20th, 2016, 9:52 am 

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No, I think this nearly clears up my problem. The main issue seems to be whether "plus" is part of the "ne . . . plus" construction or is unconnected to "ne." At least that is the hypothesis I am going to rely upon during Book 2. For example, I intend to pronounce the "-s" in "plus" in this: "si nous ne nous attirons pas nous-mêmes plus de malheurs" and also in "que pouvons-nous souffrir de plus?" but the "-s" will be mute in "Notre substance ne la sentira plus."

I think, too, that I now understand why the "-s" is mute in "Il est fatigué, il n'a plus d'énergie" but sounded in "Si je prends un bon petit déjeuner, j'ai plus d'énergie." It's simply that "ne," which lacks any closing "pas," kidnaps the "plus" and enlists it to complete the negative idiom, depriving it of its character as a noun.


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Post Posted:: July 20th, 2016, 10:14 am 
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chymocles wrote:
I intend to pronounce the "-s" in "plus" in this: "si nous ne nous attirons pas nous-mêmes plus de malheurs" and also in "que pouvons-nous souffrir de plus?" but the "-s" will be mute in "Notre substance ne la sentira plus."


three times correct :thumbs: you got it !

Quote:
I think, too, that I now understand why the "-s" is mute in "Il est fatigué, il n'a plus d'énergie" but sounded in "Si je prends un bon petit déjeuner, j'ai plus d'énergie." It's simply that "ne," which lacks any closing "pas," kidnaps the "plus" and enlists it to complete the negative idiom, depriving it of its character as a noun.


hehe, I never thought of "kidnapping" a word :lol: , but maybe you could see it that way. Indeed "plus" is replacing "pas" in this sentence.

Glad that is sorted out. :)

Sonia


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Post Posted:: July 31st, 2016, 8:49 am 

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I have recorded ⅔ of Book 2 and have reached 54 minutes. The complete book will run to over 90 minutes, so I think it best to stop here; the rest of this book focuses on Satan's journey to the Earth, which can reasonably be isolated from the first part, which takes place in Pandemonium. Books 9 and 10 are also very long and will probably each have to be divided into two parts, so it would be wise to revise the MW accordingly. If the rules permit the numbers to be 2a, 2b, 9a, 9b, 10a, and 10b, that might be useful for readers for whom knowing the book number matters, but it is not crucial.

Over the next week or so I will check my work and post it when I am satisfied. There is no hurry; a friend and a relative both died yesterday, so I will be busy with other matters for a time.

Tom


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Post Posted:: August 8th, 2016, 9:22 am 

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I paid a native speaker of French, living in southern France, to critique my latest reading, and he made two observations that I would like to ask you about. First, he objected to my pronouncing the /s/ in "tandis que," whereas I had been advised by others that in a soutenu reading I should pronounce the /s/. What is your opinion?

Second, he said that my /r/ is often "rolled" to the point of obscuring the word. While I do not roll the /r/ with the tip of my tongue, I certainly do gargle it robustly, and I was very much afraid of just this problem. He also pointed out a few /r/s which were anglicized, so I intend to be very careful to steer between Scylla and Charybdis. I am tweaking the reading now. I would appreciate your opinion about the part you have already heard: Did my /r/ strike you as unusual at all? I'm sure it must have. My French critic claims that the heavy /r/ was a characteristic of the speech of country folk in the time of Louis XVI but "nowadays it no longer exists." I wouldn't mind sounding old-fashioned, but there is no advantage in sounding rustic as well. What do you think?

Tom


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Post Posted:: August 8th, 2016, 10:13 am 
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chymocles wrote:
I paid a native speaker of French, living in southern France, to critique my latest reading, and he made two observations that I would like to ask you about. First, he objected to my pronouncing the /s/ in "tandis que," whereas I had been advised by others that in a soutenu reading I should pronounce the /s/. What is your opinion?


I was already thinking about the "tandis que" problem while I was listening to your recording. I think I already heard both versions, but mostly I hear it with an 's' pronounced (even from French native speakers). I know I sometimes pronounce it and sometimes not LOL. I think it might be a regional thing maybe.

Ok to be very sure now, I checked my French reference dictionary "Le Robert" (quite THE dictionary for French). They indeed only mention "tandike" with mute 's' as only pronunciation, and I must say, it comes as a total surprise to me. I KNOW I often hear it pronounced. Well as I said, maybe it's a regional quirk, or the "spoken" language of the new generation starts to shift the pronunciation, which happens in all languages time and again. As an example: French wikipedia has both pronunciations already mentioned: https://fr.wiktionary.org/wiki/tandis_que probably means, the young ones say it already.

I let you decide whether you want to change them (are there many ?) I don't think people will mind this 's' but if you want to adhere to the Robert rules, then apparently, you have to mute it.

Something learnt as well (I'm sure I will not adhere to this all the time though LOL force of habit)

Quote:
Second, he said that my /r/ is often "rolled" to the point of obscuring the word. While I do not roll the /r/ with the tip of my tongue, I certainly do gargle it robustly, and I was very much afraid of just this problem. He also pointed out a few /r/s which were anglicized, so I intend to be very careful to steer between Scylla and Charybdis. I am tweaking the reading now. I would appreciate your opinion about the part you have already heard: Did my /r/ strike you as unusual at all? I'm sure it must have. My French critic claims that the heavy /r/ was a characteristic of the speech of country folk in the time of Louis XVI but "nowadays it no longer exists." I wouldn't mind sounding old-fashioned, but there is no advantage in sounding rustic as well. What do you think?


hm yes it's true, I would not roll the 'r' in French, but it did not strike me as disagreeable, and I don't think it's really wrong, that's why I did not correct it. You know, it's a bit like in English, mostly the 'r' is not rolled at all, but some people make a point of rolling it very much, and I always find that quaint diction. I think it fits here quite nicely because it's an old text, and it gives it a bit of a "poetic" feeling. Like I guess, you would roll the 'r's in Milton's original probably as well, even though usually you might not roll your 'r's when you normally speak. But this is not "normal" it's poetic diction.

I cannot say whether it's rustic LOL I would say it's quaint and extravagant diction. And I think in the south of France (Provence) they roll the 'r' as well. (ok you could argue, that's the rustics LOL)

If you want to leave it out for the next chapters, you can do it, but I actually liked it. And really, do you think it would be worth re-doing ALL of chapter 1 for this ? Lot of work was involved. But it's your call.

Sonia


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Post Posted:: August 8th, 2016, 12:25 pm 

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Well, that's a couple of loads off my mind. I had always said "tandis que" without the /s/, but hey! I figured that since my ex-wife and a local French teacher both recommended the /s/ I'd put it in, and now that it's there, I think I'll continue simply because it's old-fashioned.

As for the /r/, that is an even greater load! Quite frankly, I don't know how to pronounce it except à l'Américain or in the throat. My other tutor advised me to scratch my throat while saying it, and this does produce a less feline sound, but my local French teacher simply laughed and called it an Edith Piaf-ism. So I will quit cultivating the gargle except for special effects, as when the devil pares his claws in soliloquy, but if it comes in on other occasions, I won't fret.

Merci mille fois!

Tom


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Post Posted:: August 9th, 2016, 6:11 pm 

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Sonia, I'm confused about the pronunciation of "fuyions." Should it be /fɥijɔ̃/ or /fɥiijɔ̃/? That is, how many syllables does it have and what exactly are they?

Tom


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Post Posted:: August 10th, 2016, 1:10 am 
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chymocles wrote:
Sonia, I'm confused about the pronunciation of "fuyions." Should it be /fɥijɔ̃/ or /fɥiijɔ̃/? That is, how many syllables does it have and what exactly are they?


hmmm, what you mean is the imparfait (nous fuyions) compared of the présent (nous fuyons), right ? I would probably say it a tiny bit longer with the 'yi' to show which time is meant, but don't exaggerate to really make 3 syllables out of it. So don't say "fuy-i-ons" but more "fuy-jons".

Here is a good site, where you can hear the VERY slight difference. You'll notice the male voice (the first sample) says the présent much faster whereas the imparfait is dragged a bit longer, to make the differentiation. With the female voice (second sample) you don't hear too much of a difference. I would say these are native speakers saying the words, so you can trust that. I would have said it the same way. Open the two links at the same time in different windows, then click first on "fuyions" and then immediately on "fuyons", then you hear the difference better, especially with the male voice.

https://www.howtopronounce.com/french/fuyions/
https://www.howtopronounce.com/french/fuyons/

Hope this helps. :)

Sonia


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Post Posted:: August 10th, 2016, 5:01 am 

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Thank you for the new website; it does help. As spoken, "fuyions" consists of two syllables, with duration distinguishing between the tenses. I'm working on it.

I must ask your advice again, though, and thank you for your patience. I am working my way through five pages of single-spaced criticism of my first 55 minutes of Book 2, from a native speaker and teacher of French, located somewhere south of Paris. Here is what he has to say about the following passage;

Quote:
Ce sol désert ne manque point de trésor caché, diamants et or; nous ne manquons point non plus d’habileté ou d’art pour en étaler la magnificence: et qu’est-ce que le ciel peut montrer de plus?

l.22: diamants et or: you should link the words.
l.23: plus /plɥ/ without the ‘s’. If you hear the ‘s’ sound, it means ‘more’, without the ‘s’, it means ‘no more’.


Although M. Signard appears to be very learned, I am dubious. Not only does he contradict your rule about liaison before "et" but he also contradicts both the "How to Pronounce" site and the Forvo site on the pronunciation of "plus" in this construction. On another occasion I questioned his advice about a liaison in "poursuivis et frappé" and he responded as follows:

Quote:
The 'liaison' is indeed between 'poursuivis et...'
The rule is very simple: first word ending with a consonant, second one beginning with a vowel: in this case: 's' et 'e'.


I am quite comfortable with taking his advice cum grano salis if you advise me to do so, but I thought maybe it was not a case of contradiction but of some distinction that I had failed to grasp. What think you? Will too many cooks spoil the broth?


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Post Posted:: August 10th, 2016, 6:45 am 
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ok, back to French grammar. LOL

Quote:
I am working my way through five pages of single-spaced criticism of my first 55 minutes of Book 2


:shock: I hope he is not contradicting all I say !

Quote:
Ce sol désert ne manque point de trésor caché, diamants et or; nous ne manquons point non plus d’habileté ou d’art pour en étaler la magnificence: et qu’est-ce que le ciel peut montrer de plus?

l.22: diamants et or: you should link the words.


when I read your friend was "French teacher from Paris" I really started to become self-conscious. Could I really dare to go against a man who should obviously know better ? Well, I did not simply want to have this burden on my shoulder alone, so I asked a friend of MINE, also a native French speaker, who studied French literature in Strasbourg and who now works in the literary archives here in Luxembourg, so one can safely say, she knows what she is talking about as well.

I gave her the sentence to read aloud, without saying what I was expecting, without mentioning to be careful of liaison or anything. She should simply read it as she normally would.

She did NOT say the 's' before "et", but made a little pause, like I would have done. Afterwards I told her what I was looking for and she agreed that sometimes in "expressions fixes" one could make liaison (most famous example: mesdames et messieurs, faites vos jeux, in the casino: here you say the 's' before "et", it's more fluent) so there are exceptions, but usually to make it quite clear she would not say the 's', because often it becomes ambiguous if you do.

She said: it might be optional to say the 's' but it's definitely always correct if you don't make the liaison, the other is only optional, not the rule. She started to say to herself many sentences with 'et' and and always agreed that she would never say the 's' in that case. It sounded wrong to her.

So let's agree with the teacher that it might not be altogether "forbidden" as I first stated, but it's really mostly not done in spoken French and it's definitely NOT compulsory to make the liaison before "et". And after "et" it's definitely forbidden, but he did not say anything to contradict that rule, I hope !!!!

Quote:
Quote:
l.23: plus /plɥ/ without the ‘s’. If you hear the ‘s’ sound, it means ‘more’, without the ‘s’, it means ‘no more’.


Although M. Signard appears to be very learned, I am dubious. Not only does he contradict your rule about liaison before "et" but he also contradicts both the "How to Pronounce" site and the Forvo site on the pronunciation of "plus" in this construction.


not sure which "plus" he meant here, there are two in this sentence:

"nous ne manquons point non plus d’habileté" - mute 's' because it means "we lack neither ..."
"qu’est-ce que le ciel peut montrer de plus" - spoken 's' because it means "what can heaven show more"

so it depends which one he was referring to

Quote:
On another occasion I questioned his advice about a liaison in "poursuivis et frappé" and he responded as follows:

Quote:
The 'liaison' is indeed between 'poursuivis et...'
The rule is very simple: first word ending with a consonant, second one beginning with a vowel: in this case: 's' et 'e'.


this blunt statement is SO not true as a universal rule that I begin to doubt the credentials of this guy. There are many instances where it is definitely FORBIDDEN to make the liaison. You cannot say simply because there is a consonant and a vowel that you can make liaison.

Remember, I gave you this site where there are do's and don't's and there are rules that forbid liaison, and those words also always start with vowel (otherwise there would be not point if it was not a vowel LOL)

Quote:
I am quite comfortable with taking his advice cum grano salis if you advise me to do so


I would definitely advise you to :mrgreen: . I am not saying that I am 100% sure about everything I say, as I admitted in the beginning, I am only "coming close" to native speaker. But I have native speakers here at hand if I am unsure and I would never write anything if I wasn't sure about it.

My friend also said "overdoing liaison" is a mistake that should not be made. When in doubt, preferably make a little break in the sentence and mute the 's', this is never really wrong. It might not always be so fluent, but it's not wrong. But saying liaisons where it's forbidden, that is much worse than omitting one that usually should be said.

So go with your gut feeling and don't overdo it.

Sonia


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Post Posted:: August 10th, 2016, 7:57 am 

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Sigh of relief!

You have again relieved my mind.

Signard is not located in Paris, by the way, but somewhere to the south. I know his girlfriend, who lives in Youngstown. He (somewhat reluctantly) critiqued in detail my translation of Camille, but I have never met him. I have gotten the feeling that he works by strict rules such as that "to cry" and "crier" are always "faux amis." I don't like to oppose him, but I feel confident that the world is more flexible than he sees it. For example, he prescribed TWO liaisons in "Trônes et puissances imperials " despite the fact that I had left a pause of a full two seconds after the first word. This would sound absurd and could not be justified as in any way "fluent." So I thank you for confirming my instinctual distrust of his advice. (He never prescribed liaison with the "t" of "et," though!)

He has made me much more attentive to /y/ and /o/, both challenges for a native speaker of English, and so far I am not succeeding with suivre, cuisant, dissuader, and other cases where /y/ precedes a vowel, but in simpler instances I am making progress. I am not quite half-way through the editing of the first part of Book 2. I will upload it within a week.

Thanks for your hard work. My hope is that the critiques from other people will teach me enough that you will not be overburdened with second-language blunders and can focus on the omitted words and inaudible phrases and the like, the normal snafus.

Tom


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Post Posted:: August 12th, 2016, 4:52 pm 

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Back of "plus" for a moment: You said,
Quote:
To say: “I don't want even more of them" you have to say: “Je n’en veux PAS plus” and yes, there you would pronounce the –s again, because it means “more of”.

So the /s/ of "plus" is sounded in "Ils ne craignaient pas plus l’aventure que la voix qui la defendait." Yes?

I'm looking for a rule. The /s/ is sounded if "plus" is a noun, but it may be sounded even if it is not a noun as long as it is not part of the "ne . . . plus" idiom. Is that right? Larousse says simply that the word is /ply/ "devant consonne et dans les locutions négatives." Would that mean that in "Ils ne craignaient pas plus un aventure que la voix qui la defendant" the /s/ would be silent?

I am very close to having the next installment ready—I really am. Just bear with me.


Tom


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Post Posted:: August 12th, 2016, 5:01 pm 
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chymocles wrote:
So the /s/ of "plus" is sounded in "Ils ne craignaient pas plus l’aventure que la voix qui la defendait." Yes?


I had to read this sentence a couple of times now to get the meaning...

does he mean: they did not fear adventure more than the voice that defended it (the adventure) ?

I would say, yes, the 's' is spoken

Quote:
Would that mean that in "Ils ne craignaient pas plus un aventure que la voix qui la defendant" the /s/ would be silent?


this sentence does not make any sense. If you mean: They did not fear adventure any more, then you would not speak the 's' that would be in French: ils ne craignaient plus l'aventure. (without the "pas" you don't need it when you have the "plus")

is that what you meant ?

Sonia


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Post Posted:: August 12th, 2016, 6:00 pm 

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Probably we should just put this to rest, but I am compulsive. The English is "But they / Dreaded not more th' adventure then his voice / Forbidding." That is to say, they dreaded Satan's warning not to come with him on his journey even more than the daunting journey itself. I am satisfied with the main issue, that the /s/ should be pronounced. The other question I asked was stupid. Of course the /s/ would be pronounced before "un" if that were the only difference between the sentences; after all, "u" is a vowel! Duh! What was I thinking? Sorry to trouble you, and thanks for your prompt reply. I will press on and maybe finish this tonight.


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