French Grammar notes

Here are notes on all of the different areas of grammar that I have covered up to the end of my AS year.

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French Grammar Tenses
The Present Tense
The present tense describes what is happening now, or what happens on a regular basis. There
is only one form of the present tense in French, whilst there are three in English (Je regarde = I
watch, I do watch, I am watching).
To form the present tense, take off the verb ending from the infinitive and add the correct ending
from the table below:
Regular Verb Endings:
er verbs re verbs ir verbs
Je e s is
Tu es s is
Il/elle/on e it
Nous ons ons issons
Vous ez ez issez
Ils/elles ent ent issent
Irregular Verb Endings:
These are four very common irregular verbs and how they are formed in the present tense:
Avoir (to have) Être (to be) Aller (to go) Faire (to do)
Je ai suis vais fais
Tu as es vas fais
Il/elle/on a est va fait
Nous avons sommes allons faisons
Vous avez êtes allez faites
Ils/elles ont sont vont font
Reflexive verbs
In French, there are several reflexive verbs. We recognise that a verb is reflexive from the
infinitive, e.g. se réveiller (to wake up). The equivalent in English often includes words like
`myself', `himself' and `themselves' but there is usually a better way to translate the phrase.
Most reflexive verbs are regular `er' verbs
Se lever ­ to get up
Se laver ­ to wash self
Se doucher ­ to shower
S'habiller ­ to dress self
Reflexive Pronoun Verb Ending

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Je Me e
Tu Te es
Il/elle/on Se e
Nous Nous ons
Vous Vous ez
Ils/ells se ent
All reflexive verbs use être to form the perfect tense, when the auxiliary goes after the reflexive
Future Tense
The future tense is used to say what WILL or what is GOING TO happen and is made up of two
Aller (to go) + Infinitive
E.g. Je vais regarder, Tu vas regarder, Il va regarder, Nous allons regarder, vous allez regarder,
Ils vont regarder.…read more

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The Perfect Tense
The perfect tense is made up of an auxiliary verb (usually avoir but sometimes être) and a past
To form the past participle, take of the `er'/'re'/'ir' and add:
é (for `er' verbs)
i (for `ir' verbs)
u (for `re' verbs)
E.g. J'ai joué au tennis, il a écouté de la musique, nous avons attendu
However, some verbs have an irregular past participle, which just has to be learnt:
E.g.…read more

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The conditional tense, which means `would' is used to make a suggestion, to be polite or in a
sentence that depends on something else.
Si + Imperfect = Conditional
Adding imperfect endings to the future stem forms the conditional tense:
Je ­ `ais'
Tu ­ `ais'
Il/elle/on ­ `ait'
Nous ­ `ions'
Vous ­ `iez'
Ils/elles ­ `aient'
E.g.…read more

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French Grammar ­ useful notes
Direct Object Pronouns
The direct object of a sentence is the person or thing to which the action is `done'.
A direct object pronoun replaces a noun that is the object of the sentence (to make, for example,
I like it, I like them etc.)
It (m) ­ le/l'
It (f) ­ la/l'
Them (m/f) les
When making a sentence negative, the DOP goes between `ne' and the verb
E.g.…read more

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Je ­ moi Tu ­ toi Il ­ lui Elle ­ elle
Nous/on ­ nous Vous ­ vous Ils ­ eux Elles elles
Possessive Adjectives
Possessive adjectives show who or what something or someone belongs to.…read more

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Il est sportif / elle est sportive
s sse Il est gros / elle est grosse
Some adjectives never change:
Chic (smart), cool (cool), extra (great), super (super) and marron (brown)
Some adjectives follow a special pattern (beau beautiful, nouveau new, vieux old):
Masculine Masculine (pl) Feminine Feminine (pl)
Beau Beaux Belle Belles
Nouveau Nouveaux Nouvelle Nouvelles
Vieux Vieux Vielle Vielles
Attention: If the noun being described is masculine, singular and begins with a vowel or a mute
`h', use the form bel, nouvel or…read more

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Dans (in... time) ­ E.g. Dans trios ans...
Pendant (during, for) ­ E.g. J'ai été célibataire pendant cinq ans.
Pour (during, for ­ in the future tense)
D'ici (from now) ­ E.g. D'ici un mois je saurai si je suis enceinte
Vers (around) ­ E.g. Samir va me rappeler vers 7h
Avant (before) ­ E.g. Avant, je voulais avoir un enfant
Après (after) ­ E.g. Après cette experience, je ne suis pas sûre
Une fois (once) ­ E.g.…read more

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Ils/elles ont Ils/elles auront Ils aient
Boire ­ Je bois J'ai bu Je buvais Je boirai Je boive
to drink Tu bois Il/elle a Il/elle Tu boiras Tu boives
Il/elle boit bu buvait Il/elle boira Il boive
Nous buvons Nous boirons Nous buvions
Vous buvez Vous boirez Vous buviez
Ils/elles boivent Ils/elles boiront Ils boivent
Infinitiv Present Perfec Imperfect Future Subjunctive
e t
Devoir ­ Je dois J'ai dû Je devais Je devrai Je doive
to have Tu dois Il/elle a Il/elle Tu devras Tu…read more

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­ to Je suis J'ai été J'étais Je serai Je sois
be Tu es Il/elle a Il/elle était Tu seras Tu sois
Il/elle est été Il/elle sera Il/elle soit
Nous sommes Nous serons Nous soyons
Vous êtes Vous serez Vous soyez
Ils/elles sont Ils/elles seront Ils/ells soient
Faire ­ Je fais J'ai fait Je faisais Je ferai Je fasse
to do / to Tu fais Il/elle a Il/elle Tu feras Tu fasses
make Il/elle fait fait faisait Il/elle fera Il/elle fasse
Nous faisons Nous ferons…read more



This is so useful - you've just saved my ALevels!! <3

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