Subjunctive Conjugations

Conjugaisons du subjonctif

To make up for the difficulty in knowing when to use the French subjunctive, the conjugations are relatively easy. All regular -er, -ir, and -re verbs as well as many irregular verbs* are conjugated according to this pattern:

  1. Start with the present tense ils conjugation of the verb
  2. Drop –ent to find the subjunctive stem
  3. Add the appropriate subjunctive ending: -e, -es, -e, -ions, -iez, -ent
  aimer finir vendre partir couvrir mettre
  ils  aiment finissent vendent partent couvrent mettent
  stem  aim- finiss- vend- part- couvr- mett-
Subjunctive endings       
… que je / j’ -e aime finisse vende parte couvre mette
… que tu -es aimes finisses vendes partes couvres mettes
… qu’il/elle/on -e aime finisse vende parte couvre mette
… que nous -ions aimions finissions vendions partions couvrions mettions
… que vous -iez aimiez finissiez vendiez partiez couvriez mettiez
… qu’ils/elles -ent aiment finissent vendent partent couvrent mettent

  Conseils concis

* Irregular -ir verbs conjugated like partir and couvrir and irregular –re verbs conjugated like mettre are all regular in the subjunctive.

The singular and third person plural subjunctive conjugations for -er verbs are the same as their indicative conjugations, so these are good verbs to use when you’re not sure whether you need the subjunctive.

Subjunctive Quiz

Think you’ve got it? Test yourself on the French subjunctive with this fill-in-the-blank exercise: Changement de programme

Note: You must be logged into your Progress with Lawless French account to take this test. If you don’t have one, sign up – it’s free!

  More French subjunctive

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French subjunctive

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