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The subjunctive mood is used to express actions or ideas which are subjective or otherwise uncertain: will/wanting, emotion, doubt,

possibility, necessity, judgment. It is nearly always found in dependent clauses introduced by que or qui, and the subjects of the dependent and main clauses are usually different. Je veux que tu le fasses. I want you to do it. Il faut que nous partions. it is necessary that we leave. The subjunctive can seem overwhelming, but the thing to remember is the subjunctive = subjectivity, unreality. That should help you figure it out at least 90% of the time. NOTE: There is no future subjunctive. Even if the action is to happen in the future, the present subjunctive is used. However, there is a past subjunctive. While not as difficult as using the French subjunctive, conjugating irregular and stem-changing verbs into the subjunctive can be a little confusing. Stem-changing verbs and most irregular verbs follow the same pattern as regular verbs for the singular conjugations (je, tu, il/elle/on) as well as the third person plural (ils/elles): the subjunctive stem comes from the present tense conjugation of ils.

present ils tense: stem boivsubjunctive endin gs ... que -e boive je ... que -es boives

boire boivent

envoyer prendre envoient prennen t envoiprenn-

venir viennent vienn-

envoie envoies

prenne prennes

vienne viennes

tu ... -e qu'il/elle/ on ... -ent qu'ils/ell es boive envoie prenne vienne


envoient prennen t


the nous and vous forms of the subjunctive find their stems in the present tense conjugation of nous: present nous buvons envoyon prenons venons tense: s stem buvenvoyprenvensubjunctive endin gs ... que -ions buvions envoyio prenions venions nous ns ... que -iez buviez envoyie preniez veniez vous z This two-stem subjunctive pattern applies to all stem-changing verbs as well as all but seven irregular verbs.

Five verbs have irregular subjunctive stems but take the same endings as above: One stem faire pouvoi r fasspuissfasse puisse Two stems* aller vouloir aill- / allaille veuill/ voulveuille

savoir sachsache

stem(s) ... que je (j') ...






que tu ... qu'il/ell e/on ... que nous ... que vous ... qu'ils/el les


s puisse



s veuille

fassion s fassiez

puissio ns puissie z

sachio ns sachiez


voulion s vouliez


fassent puisse nt

sachen t


veuille nt

*These two verbs have different stems for je/tu/il/ils and nous/vous.

And finally, two verbs have irregular stems as well irregular endings: avoi r aie tre sois

... que je (j') ... que tu ... qu'il/ elle/o n ... que nous ... que





ayo ns


ayez soyez

vous ... qu'ils /elles

aien t