In standard modern French, in which sentence would one be least likely to find a liaison

  • J'ai vu un avion.
  • L'avion était énorme.
  • J'ai vu l'avion énorme.
  • C'était mon avion favori.

I was thinking it may be "C'était mon avion favori" as the speaker may not use a liaison with "mon", but I'm not fully sure. Any ideas?

3 Answers 3

  • J'ai vu un_avion (mandatory liaison)
  • L'avion était_énorme (optional liaison)
  • J'ai vu l'avion énorme (impossible liaison)
  • C'était mon_avion favori (mandatory liaison)

And we could even have had :

  • J'ai vu un_énorme avion (mandatory liaison)

I couldn't sum up the rules behind it with clarity because, as a native speaker, I'm largely resorting on intuition and sounding right, thus making me a poor explainer here. Which is not that much of a trouble, since there are many online sources :

Some could be :

@ Banque de dépannage linguistique
@ langue-fr.net
@ fr.wikipedia
@ francaisfacile.com

  • Also possible : jai vu un_énorm_avion (liaisons).
    – Istao
    Commented May 30, 2013 at 5:01
  • Perso je dirais L'avion était énorme (no liaison).
    – Impair
    Commented May 30, 2013 at 9:44
  • @Impair oui, celle-ci fonctionne avec ou sans liaison, et même si la version "liée" me vient plus naturellement, j'avoue qu'aucune des deux ne me choque. J'ai édité pour spécifier ce point. Commented May 30, 2013 at 11:45

The sentence in which there is the less liaison is the third one: there is in it actually none. One should say:

  • J'ai vu un-n-avion;
  • L'avion était-t-énorme;
  • C'était mon-n-avion.

In French a liaison is usually done with the word mon when it is followed by a vowel.


Those two are probably always done.

J'ai vu un avion

C'était mon avion favori

I think this one will be done less often.

L'avion était énorme

This one will almost never be done:

J'ai vu l'avion énorme

probably because the standard place for the adjective here is before the name, like this:

J'ai vu l'énorme avion.

and putting it after will be done for emphasis, probably followed by other adjectives, and emphasis is something which break the liaison. (BTW, in the standard sentence, there will be a liaison between énorme and avion).

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