French - Lesson 3 - Conjugation of the Verb être

Conjugation of the Verb être - To Be

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Here is a chart showing the conjugation of the verb être, meaning "to be".

Person Singular Plural
First je suis
I am
nous sommes
we are
Second tu es
you are
vous êtes
you are
Third il/elle/on est
he/it/she/one is
ils/elles sont
they are

Here are some more vocabulary words. Again, if you'd rather have these introduced as part of a dialog, simply go on to the next lesson.

une mère a mom / mum, mother
qui who
nous sommes we are
vous êtes you (pl. / sing. polite) are
mes my (pl.)
un parent a parent
bien sûr of course
il est he is
mon (m.) / ma (f.) my
un père a dad, father
elle est she is
ils sont they are
un grand-parent (sing.) / des grands-parents (pl.) grandparent / grandparents
tu es you (sing. familiar) are
je suis I am
une princesse a princess

Additional Notes

The "tu" form is used when speaking with people you are very familiar with, such as friends and family. For a more polite usage, use the "vous" form, even when speaking with only one person. For example, someone speaking to their boss, or a child speaking to an adult who is not close family might say "vous êtes" instead of "tu es".

Random Trivia

English used to also have a separate second person singular form - do you know what it is? It's something you might still hear today, though not very often. Yup, it's "thou", as in "thou art". Most other Indo-European languages still use the second person singular forms, and the English form of many verbs is similar to languages such as German ("thou hast" in English, "du hast" in German, "you have" today).

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