Is the French J sound used in common English words

I’ve come across this French name Jacques and the first letter of this name is not pronounced in standard way with English names which starts with the same letter. As far as I know, in English the letter J in the names which start with J is pronounces like G in the English alphabet.

I would like to ask are there any English words which have the same sound with J in the name Jacques.

The pronunciation of Jacques


The letter ‘J’ usually represents the sound /ʒ/ in French. In English this sound is most often represented by the letter ‘S’. A large number of the words that have this sound in actually came to us from Old French. Many of them end in –sure. Here are some examples:

  • leisure, treasure, pleasure. closure, exposure, seizure (yes, that last one is spelled with a ‘Z’!)

There are also many nouns originally from Latin which came to us from old French which end in sion. These endings are pronounced /ʒn/. Here are some examples of these:

  • abrasion, adhesion, version, , allusion, aversion, circumcision, cohesion, collision, collusion, conclusion, confusion, conversion, corrosion, decision, delusion, derision, erosion, evasion, exclusion, explosion, fusion, infusion …

There are also two adjectives ending –sual which usually have the /ʒ/ sound; casual and visual.

Lastly there are many words from ancient Greek with the ending -sia, often pronounced /ʒə/. Here are some examples of some of these:

  • ambrosia, amnesia, kinesthesia, euthanasia, synaesthesia

The /ʒ/ sound is actually the rarest consonant sound in English. It nearly always occurs in the middle of a word. There is only one common noun in English ( – so I was told at university) which begins with the sound /ʒ/. This is the word /ʒɒnrə/, “genre“.

Hope this is helpful!

Source : Link , Question Author : Mrt , Answer Author : Araucaria – Not here any more.

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