Letter H in French

Letter H in French

You certainly learnt that we have a ‘mute H’ and an ‘aspirated H’
However, the letter H is always silent in French, and aspirated for a few expressions.


It is easier to say that we have:
1. a plugged H
2. an unplugged H

1. Plugged H

A “H” that allows a connection with the previous word:

Un homme = un nome
Un grand homme = un grand tome
Des hommes= des zomes
L’homme = lome

In this case the letter H is nothing just a rest from Latin or Greek: Hôpital, s’habiller, hiver…

2. Unplugged H

A “H” with no connection with the previous word:

Un hamac = un / hamac
Des hamacs= dè hamac
Un grand hamac= un gran hamac
Le hamac

Se haïr, héros, hobby

There is no rule to know when the word has a plugged or unplugged H, you need to learn them.

3. Aspirated H

When we laugh in French, we can hear a breath in the voice, this is a true aspiration:

Ha, ha , ha
Hé, hé, hé
Hi, hi, hi