French pronunciation

The letter combination ue is pronounced with the lips tightly puckered, as if you’re saying the French u, but instead make a tight "w" sound – phonetic symbol: [ɥ].

The e follows its normal rules.

Par exemple…
une nuée cloud, horde
la Suède Sweden
tatouer to tattoo
usuel usual, normal


  • In g + ue and ui, the u serves only to make the g hard, so there’s no "w" sound: une figue (fig), larguer (to release).
  • Q + ue is pronounced [kɛ] (as in une question) unless it’s at the end of a word, in which case it’s just [k] (as in athlétique).
  • None of this applies to the letter combination ueil, which has its own pronunciation rules.

Also see ui.

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French pronunciation

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