Imperative Forms of French Verbs

Part of French Verbs For Dummies Cheat Sheet

In French, the imperative mood expresses an order, request, or directive and is created with regular verbs by using the verb directly and eliminating the subject pronoun. The imperative uses the present tense of most verbs and the conjugations of three subject pronouns: tu (when speaking to someone familiar), vous (when speaking to someone unfamiliar, older, a group, or a superior), and nous (when including yourself in the group). Regular er, -ir, and re verbs follow the same pattern in commands as shown in the following example, along with an example of a command using a pronominal verb and pronoun.

Parler (to speak) Finir (to finish) Vendre (to sell) Se laver (to wash)
Parle! Finis! Vends! Lave-toi!
Parlons! Finissons! Vendons! Lavons-nous!
Parlez! Finissez! Vendez! Lavez-vous!