How To Type Special French Characters


These are the special characters you will need: 
l'accent aigu é
l'accent grave è, à, ù
l'accent circonflexe â, ê, î, ô, û
le tréma ë, ï
la cédille ç

Special Characters on the PC
(with Windows 95, 98, NT)

Some word processors, such as Microsoft Word, allow you to input special characters by using Control key shortcut combinations.  Press and hold the Control key (Ctrl on you keyboard), then press the special key indicated.  Release the two keys, then press the key for the letter you want accented.
l'accent aigu Ctrl-' (Apostrophe)
l'acdfent grave Ctrl-` (Key just to the left of the 1 key)
l'accent circonflexe Ctrl-^ (Karrot or shift 6, you will have to press Ctrl, Shift and 6 at the same time)
le tréma Ctrl-: (Colon, you will have to press Ctrl, Shift and ; at the same time)
La cédille Ctrl-, (Comma)

l'accent aigu

l'accent grave
l'accent circonflexe
le tréma
la cédille

If your word processor does not allow you to use the special character shortcut keys, you will have to use the Alt key combinations.  While holding down the Alt key, type the number combination on the keypad (make sure that the number lock is on).

To print a copy of this list for easy reference, click on the button below.  A new page will appear that contains only the list of Alt key combinations.  Simply click the print icon on your browser's tool bar.

L'accent aigu

é     Alt-0233 É     Alt-0201
L'accent grave
à     Alt-0224 è     Alt-0232 ù     Alt-0249
À     Alt-0192 È     Alt-0200 Ù     Alt-0217
L'accent circonflexe

â     Alt-0226 ê     Alt-0234 î     Alt-0238 ô     Alt-0244 û     Alt-0251
     Alt-0194 Ê     Alt-0202 Π    Alt-0206 Ô     Alt-0212 Û     Alt-0219

Le tréma

ë     Alt-0235 ï     Alt-0239
Ë     Alt-0203 Ï     Alt-0207
La cédille
ç     Alt-0231 Ç     Alt-0199
The list of All-code combinations is found on the Character Map.  From the Start menu. select Programs, then Accessories.  Then click on Character Map.  Click on the character you want and the code will appear on the lower right-hand corner of the Character map box.

Special Characters on the MAC

For the Mac you will have to use the Option key.  While holding down the Option key, press the key indicated below for the correct accent, then press the letter you want to be accented.  If the special character does not appear, check to be sure that the Caps Lock is off.
l'accent aigu Option-e
l'accent grave Option-` (key just left of the 1 key)
l'accent circonflexe Option-i
le tréma Option-u
la cédille Option-c only (you will not have to press C afterwards.

l'accent aigu

l'accent grave
l'accent circonflexe
le tréma
la cédille