Many people in Vietnam pronounce the vowel "e" in "check" as "é" in "écouter" (French), is that correct?

closed as off-topic by NVZ, Nathaniel, curiousdannii, Helmar, JEL Sep 4 '16 at 20:27

This question appears to be off-topic. The users who voted to close gave this specific reason:

If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • The sound of the vowel "é" in "écouter" doesn't exist in english, but it is close to the "e" in "check". – 54 69 6D Aug 30 '16 at 20:10
  • 1
    The lax "è" of French Bibliothèque is very close to the lax /ɛ/ in English check. The tense "é" of French écouter is very close to the tense /e/ in English shake, which does not rhyme with check. – John Lawler Aug 30 '16 at 20:22
  • 1
    You mean close to "a" in English shake ? – Tâm Hạt Tiêu Aug 30 '16 at 20:34
  • Yes, that is what he means. Symbols inside slashes (such as /e/) are from the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA). The symbol /e/ means the vowel sound commonly found in words like "shake", "snake", "fate", and "tape". For more information see "What notation and symbols are commonly used here?" at english.stackexchange.com/help/on-topic – MetaEd Aug 30 '16 at 20:58

Check, rendered in the International Phonetic Alphabet, is: [ʧɛk], whereas écouter is [ekute].

[ɛ] is pronounced as in Vietnamese e "to fear", and [e] is as in Vietnamese "numb".

The ê in the French word "bête" [bɛt̪] is a closer bet for check.

In Hanoi Vietnamese, the pronunciation of sách [sɛk] without the dấu sắc (rising accent), is a closer, and perhaps easier model for you. Just change the "s" to the English "ch" sound.

  • Well, [e] is't really "ay"; it's tenser than that, or at least it doesn't have a diphthong. And the French les isn't really [ɛ] either, it's tenser than [ɛ]. Trying to map French sounds to English is a thankless task. – Andrew Leach Aug 30 '16 at 21:09

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.