Conjugate regular verbs in L'Impératif (imperative)

L'Impératif - the Imperative mood - is used to express commands, instructions and advice.

e.g. "Give me this!", "Listen carefully!"

Now look at these sentences in L'Impératif Présent:

Finis tes devoirs !
Finish your homework!

Finissons nos devoirs !
Let's finish our homework!

Finissez vos devoirs !
Finish your homework!

Viens au rendez-vous!
Come to the rendez-vous!

Choisis un endroit exceptionnel!
Choose an outstanding location!

Prenez vos manteaux, il fait froid dehors !
Take your coats, it's cold outside!

Réfléchissons une minute !
Let's just think for a minute !


In French, L'Impératif has three main characteristics:

  1. There are only 3 persons in L'Impératif: tu, nous, vous since you only issue commands to 'you' or 'us/we'.
  2. Like in English, the subject pronoun is dropped in L'Impératif.
  3. The verb is at the same form as in Le Présent for tu, nous and vous:

Tu finis ta soupe. Finis ta soupe !
You're finishing your soup. Finish your soup.

 

ATTENTION: Case of -ER verbs

Tu manges ton dessert. Mange ton dessert !
You're eating your dessert. Eat your dessert!

Note that for all verbs ending in -ER (including aller), the -s is dropped at the end of the tu form.
The other forms (nous and vous) are regular.

Here are more -ER examples:

Donne-lui quelque chose !
Give him something!


Donnons une sucette à Paula !
Let's give Paula a lollipop!


Donnez-moi un baiser !
Give me a kiss!


Va au lit !
Go to bed!


Surveille ton frère !
Keep an eye on your brother!


Allons au parc !
Let's go to the park!

And the more advanced: 
Using "y" with affirmative commands (L'Impératif)
Using "en" with affirmative commands (L'Impératif)

Learn more about these related French grammar topics

Examples and resources

Finissons nos devoirs !
Let's finish our homework!


Pensez à prendre du pain !
Think of getting some bread!


Viens au rendez-vous!
Come to the rendez-vous!


Prenez vos manteaux, il fait froid dehors !
Take your coats, it's cold outside!


Finis tes devoirs !
Finish your homework!


Allons au parc !
Let's go to the park!


Choisis un endroit exceptionnel!
Choose an outstanding location!


Donne-lui quelque chose !
Give him something!


Finissez vos devoirs !
Finish your homework!


Surveille ton frère !
Keep an eye on your brother!



Donnez-moi un baiser !
Give me a kiss!


Tu finis ta soupe. Finis ta soupe !
You're finishing your soup. Finish your soup.


Tu manges ton dessert. Mange ton dessert !
You're eating your dessert. Eat your dessert!


Donnons une sucette à Paula !
Let's give Paula a lollipop!


Va au lit !
Go to bed!


Mets des sous-vêtements propres!
Juste au cas où...bonjour les traces de pneu!

Put on clean underwear!
Just in case... hellooo skid marks!


Réfléchissons une minute !
Let's just think for a minute !


Q&A

G

Kwiziq community member

8 September 2018

1 reply

Vas-y

Vous avez dit que pour les verbes 'er', ils perdent la 's', mais j'entends tout le temps 'vas-y'. C'est une erreur, ou c'est quelque chose de normal? Merci

Chris

Kwiziq community member

9 September 2018

9/09/18

The lesson is about regulat verbes. However, aller is irregular. It has vas in second person singular. 

Diwansi

Kwiziq community member

13 March 2018

1 reply

IL faut être sérieux


Chris

Kwiziq community member

13 March 2018

13/03/18

Yes, I concur. Did you have a question?


-- Chris. 

Eileen

Kwiziq community member

4 October 2017

4 replies

'Let's finish'/'Finish!'

So if 'let's finish our homework' is 'finissons nos devoirs', what would 'finish our homework!' be? (As in you're telling else to do it) Merci!

Ron

Kwiziq community member

4 October 2017

4/10/17

Bonjour Eileen,
Alors, la réponse correcte est dans la même leçon, voila les exemples:
Finis tes devoirs ! --> Finish your homework!
Finissez vos devoirs ! --> Finish your homework!

J'espère que ma réponse vous aiderait.
Bonne chance et bonne continuation dans vos études en français, la langue de Molière et qui a été utilisé par le monde français depuis l’époque d’Hugues Capet

Eileen

Kwiziq community member

5 October 2017

5/10/17

Merci Ron, but I was asking what 'finish our homework' would be, not 'finish your homework'.

If 'donne-nous' means 'give us' (as stated in an example), then how would you command someone to 'finish our homework'? Would it be 'finis-nos' rather than 'finissons nos'?

Ron

Kwiziq community member

6 October 2017

6/10/17

Bonjour à nouveau Eileen,
Je m'excuse ! In order to give a good response, let's take at look at the verb «aller» in the impératif : If I say to someone, «let's go» then the impératif phrase is «Allons-y» which uses the first person plural. By the same logic «let's finish our homework» again I would be speaking to someone like a study partner, perhaps. Using the first person plural of «finir» gives us «finissons», so using the phrase «let's finish our homework», we would have «Finissons nos devoirs». This is not a true imperative even though it would be written that way. The locuteur is merely stating that we need to finish our homework together. Perhaps the two had stopped studying to discuss going to get a bite to eat which they agree on then he states Finissons nos devoirs (let's finish our homework) puis nous pouvons aller. I hope this is clearer. Having a contextual idea at times puts things in perspective.

Bonne chance !

Eileen

Kwiziq community member

6 October 2017

6/10/17

Merci Ron. However, I was asking how do you command someone to do something for 'us' - e.g. a bully telling someone 'finish our homework!' Or 'clean our shoes!' (Not 'let's' do something which I think I understand).

Kari

Kwiziq community member

6 July 2017

4 replies

Forms in l'impératif

Why do some verbs conjugate in the il/elle form if the lesson says there can only be tu/nous/vous? Example Donne-lui, Regarde-le etc. I am confused.

Gruff

Kwiziq language super star

6 July 2017

6/07/17

Hi Kari,

Those examples aren't conjugated in the il/elle form but I can see that it's the verb object (as opposed to the subject) that's confusing you.

So "donne-lui" for example is really [tu] donne-lui : [you] give it to him. "lui" in that sentence has no bearing on which conjugation you use. Verbs can take any object as normal but you only give commands to other people in the secon person so you would conjugate using the tu/vous/nous forms.

Make sense?

Kari

Kwiziq community member

6 July 2017

6/07/17

But isn't the (tu) donnes and (tu) regardes? Why is there no "s" on the end in l'imperatif?

Gruff

Kwiziq language super star

7 July 2017

7/07/17

Hi Kari - that's explained in the lesson. "Note that for all verbs ending in -ER (including aller), the -s is dropped at the end of the tu form."

Kari

Kwiziq community member

7 July 2017

7/07/17

Yep I see that now that you bave pointed it out - must have read through it too quickly and missed that completely
I'll be right with you...