Teach a Qwerty Mac to speak French


Los Angeles, written in French as a joke by the SNCF (Merci à Jean-Francois Paris pour le photo)

As a frequent contributor to Loic Le Meur’s blog – which is consistently ranked among the top blogs in France – I face frustration with adding accents to my postings. (I own a Qwerty keyboard Mac, not the French-style Azerty keyboard that has handy one touch accents).

Here’s the solutions (All suggested by readers of Loic’s blog)

1- Use Bon Patron to add accents and correct your French. A Canadian website that specifically looks for typical anglophone errors in French, I highly recommend it. (Grand merci à Sylvain Pellier)

2- Use Mac accents thanks to this handy table (Grand merci à Cedric)

æ = Option (alt) + ‘
à = Option (alt) + ` + a
â = Option (alt) + i + a
ç = Option (alt) + c
é = Option (alt) + e + e
è = Option (alt) + ` + e
ê = Option (alt) + i + e
ë = Option (alt) + u + e
î = Option (alt) + i + i
ï = Option (alt) + u + i
ô = Option (alt) + i + o
ö = Option (alt) + u + o
ù = Option (alt) + ` + u
û = Option (alt) + i + u
ü = Option (alt) + u + u
« = Option (alt) + \
» = Option (alt) + Shift + \
½ = Option (alt) + ½

3- Install Rainer Brockerhoff’s program that simplifies the adding of accents. Have not tried this because I am extremely wary of jamming up my computer with too many programs. (Grand merci à Thy)

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2 responses to “Teach a Qwerty Mac to speak French

  1. So, when did you become a Canadian website, and what is it you’re recommending?
    Sorry, couldn’t resist. Thanks for that table — I was getting tired of trial and error in finding those accents!

  2. Merci pour le link, Thomas.
    Just to clarify, it’s not a “program” as such but a keyboard layout, which is just a data table that maps keys to characters… nothing executable inside.
    Regarding the option-key method for accents (which I still use myself), I use this handy mnemonic to remember:
    Option-E = acute (´), remember Portuguese é
    Option-I = circumflex (^), remember French î
    Option-N = tilde (~), remember Spanish ñ
    Option-U = umlaut (¨), remember German ü
    …and of course
    Option-` = grave (`) as itself
    Option-C = cedilla (ç) as itself.

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