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Conjugate French -ir verbs in the historic past in French (Le Passé Simple)

You've already learnt how to recognise most -IR verbs* in Le Passé Simple (Indicatif). Now let's learn how these verbs are conjugated in Le Passé Simple (Indicatif).

Learn how to conjugate -ir verbs in Le Passé Simple (Indicatif) in French

Look at these examples:

Cette nuit-là, je dormis paisiblement.That night, I slept peacefully.

Quand tu partis pour la guerre, mon cœur se brisa.When you left for war, my heart broke.

Le prince choisit Cendrillon parmi toutes les danseuses.The prince chose Cinderella among all the dancers.

Nous sortîmes alors du placard.We then came out of the closet. 

Vous réussîtes à vous libérer.You managed to free yourselves.

Les enfants grandirent très vite.The children grew up very fast.


To conjugate -ir verbs in Le Passé Simple (Indicatif), here is what to do:

Stem of the verb (without -IR) + endings: -is, -is, -it, -îmes, -îtes, -irent


Note that the 'je/tu/il/elle/on' forms for regular -ir verbs like finir are exactly the same as the Présent conjugations. The context will give you the tense in those cases.
* The following French -ir verbs (and their derivatives) do not follow this pattern in Le Passé Simple (Indicatif):
venir (to come) / tenir (to hold)
courir (to run)

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