Macedonian language has its own alphabet which is a Cyrillic alphabet. The alphabet is pretty simple, it is a phonetic alphabet (thanks, captain obvious), including 31 letters, and it looks like this:

 

The first thing that you can see, are the similarities. Indeed, the letters A, E; O; C ; K and T are similar to their French application, also quite similar to the English one.

The second thing that you may note, it is the presence of ‘fake friends’; some letters are similar, but denote different sounds.

B = V               У = U (ou)       P = R     X = H            H = N

In-between, there are letters which are similar to the Latin alphabet, but with different sounds from French  

S = DZ             J = Y/LLE

And of course, the unique Cyrillic letters:

Б б – b             Г г – g              Д д – d

Ж ж – j             З з – z             И и – i

Л л – l             П п – p            Ф ф – f

Ц ц – ts           Ч ч – tch          Џџ – dg           Ш ш – ch sh

Finally, there are some “modified” letters, which sound like a combination of two letters.

Љ – Lj             Њ – Nj             Ѓ – Gj             Ќ – Kj

It can look complicated, but for a French, it is not really. These letters look like they are formed from Л – Љ, Н-Њ, Г-Ѓ, К-Ќ respectively. You just add the sound [j] to pronounce them correctly. For example, the sound Љ, that we make by putting together two L and one E. Like in: paille, brousaille, volaille.

The same for Њ, in French we make this sound by putting together a G and an N, like in: gagner, magnières, pagner.

When you understand this, the Ќ and Ѓ sounds are not complicated anymore.

 

Written by: Paul Knecht-Deyber

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