Bauhaus-Universität Weimar

words such as très, as in ‘très-bien/ ‘guère’ 1quel sup¬ 
plice ! ’ &c. ; and then in accenting modifying words 
generally, such as the negative pas, &c., as in c il n’est 
pas ici/ But there is great laxity and arbitrariness 
generally, which makes it difficult for Frenchmen to dis¬ 
criminate force either in their own or in foreign languages. 
Stress and quantity are independent in French. Thus 
in bavard (bavairr) and finir (finiirr), the first vowel in 
each word is half-long and accented (strong), the second 
full-long and unaccented, or rather half-strong, (eh) is, 
however, almost always both fully short and weak-stressed. 
There is also a certain rhythmic tendency both in stress 
and quantity, although it is not well defined, which leads 
to the alternation of strong and weak stress, long and 
short quantity in various degrees. 
Tone is very rudimentary. Although question and 
doubt is generally expressed by a rise, French intonation 
is otherwise more emotional than logical. The tone in 
French generally runs straight on in one direction, and 
appears to be more level than in E. The rising tone is 
often used in simple statements. 
Altogether French is characterised by the almost com¬ 
plete absence of synthesis distinctions, and the existing 
distinctions may be disregarded without materially affect¬ 
ing the intelligibility of the context. These wants are, 
however, fully compensated by the clear, energetic articu¬ 
lation of the consonants, the purity of the vowels, and the 
sonorousness of the nasal vowels. No language combines 
power and harmony with elegance and brevity more suc¬ 
cessfully than French. 
In the following specimens the marks of quantity 
and stress must be taken to represent in many cases


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