French conjugations (present of indicative)

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French verbs are conventionally divided into three conjugations ("conjugaisons").

The first two groups follow a regular conjugation, whereas the third group follows an irregular one.

1st GROUP : verbs ending in "-er" (except aller).

ex: "manger" (to eat) : Je mange; Tu manges; Il/Elle mange; Nous mangeons; Vous mangez; Ils/Elles mangent.

2nd GROUP : verbs ending in "-ir", with the gerund ending in -issant.

ex: "finir" (to finish) : Je finis; Tu finis; Il/Elle finit; Nous finissons; Vous finissez; Ils/Elles finissent.

3rd GROUP :

  • In the present of indicative, most of 3rd group verbs have the following endings:

    -s -s -t -ons -ez -ent

    ex: "boire" (to drink): Je bois; Tu bois; Il/Elle boit; Nous buvons; Vous buvez; Ils/Elles boivent.

    ex: "partir" (to leave) : Je pars; Tu pars; Il/Elle part; Nous partons; Vous partez; Ils/Elles partent.

  • The verbs ending in "-dre" have the following endings:

    -ds -ds -d -ons -ez -ent

    ex: "vendre" (to sell): Je vends; Tu vends; Il/Elle vend; Nous vendons; Vous vendez; Ils/Elles vendent.

    Except for verbs ending in "-aindre", "-eindre", "-oindre", "-soudre", such as "craindre" (to fear), "peindre" (to paint), "joindre" (to join), "résoudre" (to solve), which follow the general rule (-s -s -t -ons -ez -ent).

  • The verbs "pouvoir" (can), "vouloir" (to want), and "valoir" (to be worth) have the following ending:

    -x -x -t -ons -ez -ent

    ex: "vouloir": Je veux; Tu veux; Il/Elle veut; Nous voulons; Vous voulez; Ils/Elles veulent.

  • The verbs "ouvrir" (to open) and "cueillir" (to pick) have the same ending as the 1st group verbs:

    -e -es -e -ons -ez -ent

    ex: "ouvrir": J'ouvre; Tu ouvres; Il/Elle ouvre; Nous ouvrons; Vous ouvrez; Ils/Elles ouvrent.

  • The verb "aller" is the only verb ending in "-er" that belongs to the third group.

    "aller": Je vais; Tu vas; Il/Elle va; Nous allons; Vous allez; Ils/Elles vont.

In French, there are 2 verbs that can be used as auxiliary verbs (i.e. in front of another conjugated verb, in compound tenses): "être" and "avoir":

  • "être" (to be) : Je suis; Tu es; Il/Elle est; Nous sommes; Vous êtes; Ils/Elles sont.

  • "avoir" (to have) : J'ai; Tu as; Il/Elle a; Nous avons; Vous avez; Ils/Elles ont.

6 years ago

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Merci, Remi , votre résumé des conjugaisons est parfait.

5 years ago
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Merci beaucoup!! My daughter has tried to explain this but now I can read and hopefully retain. Adding this to my notebook tonight!

4 years ago

Thanks for the help was really helpful Remy :D

5 years ago

This really helped me in my mistakes in the exams, thanks so much. I will give you 2 lingots for this. :)

1 year ago

An awesome explanation! Thanks!

5 years ago

this is so awesome, thx alot

5 years ago


5 years ago

dont get the difference between the verb conjugations for partir and finir?

3 years ago

Partir - Pars ( -ir get cut out) and there is an "s" intead of "t" at Je pars, and Tu pars

Il/Elle part; Nous partons; Vous partez; Ils/Elles partent.

Words with similar conjugations: sortir, dormir

While Finir - Finis ( only the -r changes) Je finis; Tu finis; Il/Elle finit; Nous finissons; Vous finissez;

Ils/Elles finissent. - look at the plural personal pronouns ( fini get a double "ss". )

Words with similar conjugation:

remplir to fill

démolir to demolish

choisir to choose

obéir to obey

punir to punish

réussir to succeed

réfléchir to reflect

élargir to widen

bâtir to build

2 years ago

Thank you Teşekkürler

3 years ago

So helpfull!! Thank you so much!!

2 years ago

C'est très bien. Merci beaucoup !

2 years ago

Wow complicated thanks 4 the help tho

2 years ago

Hello, in the third group the termination -ir, it is repeated, what is mean of that? Would be of much help. A huge thanks...

2 years ago

Wow, how easily written. But incredibly difficult to learn

1 year ago


1 year ago

I agree, loving learning French, but congugation is my nightmare

1 year ago

This is the best explanation I have found as I try to learn French. Jay Jay

7 months ago
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