French For Beginners
par Olivier Malet

 

Chapter Fourteen

 

Chapter 1
Chapter 2
Chapter 3
Chapter 4
Chapter 5
Chapter 6
Chapter 7
Chapter 8
Chapter 9
Chapter 10
Chapter 11
Chapter 12
Chapter 13
Chapter 14
Chapter 15
Chapter 16
Chapter 17
Chapter 18
Chapter 19
Chapter 20
Chapter 21
Chapter 22
Chapter 23
Chapter 24
Chapter 25
Chapter 26
Chapter 27
Chapter 28

 

 

 

Now you need to know how to understand and form sentences containing a subject, a verb and a modifier (adverb) as in the English sentence: He works well.

> We’ve seen 3 commands for the verbs we’ve learned so far:

Travaille! (fam) Travaillez! : Work!

Travaillons : Let’s work!

We have 3 oral forms (Familiar, Polite & Inclusive) These 3 oral forms will be used for the present tense indicative of the verbs we’ve seen.

Je travaille : I work / I am working

Tu travailles : You work / You are working

Il, Elle travaille : He, she works / He, she is working

Ils, elles travaillent : They work / They are working

For these 4 personal pronoun the familiar oral form of the verb is used (In other words the verb always sounds the same, the endings –e, -es, ent are silent)

Nous travaillons : We work / We are working

Vous travaillez : You work / You are working

French has two equivalents for the English pronoun you. As already learned before, the familiar form is used when speaking to a person you are very close to (a parent, a relative, a friend of long standing) and when speaking to a small child. It cannot be used if you are speaking to more than one person.

In English, the pronoun they can refer to:

(1) several men (2) several women (3) a group of men and women

In French, a distinction is made.

(1) They eat (men alone or men and women mixed) : Ils mangent

(2) They eat (women alone) : Elles mangent

In the translation exercises, we will use they when referring to men alone or men and women mixed; we will use they (f) when referring to women alone.

Note : French uses the same form for he eats and he is eating, we eat and we are eating, you eat and you are eating, etc…

Note also that there is no oral distinction between:

Il travaille | Ils travaillent

Elle travaille | Elles travaillent

They sound the same. This is characteristic of TYPE I VERBS.

 

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