MYTUTOR SUBJECT ANSWERS

379 views

How do I know whether I should use -er, -é(e/s) or -ez?

For many people (including, unfortunately, French people), this is a recurrent mistake, despite the fact it can be avoided easily.

Those endings are used for different things. The first one, '-er', is the infinitive form of the verb (for 1st group verbs, and some exceptions such as "aller"). To know if it is this form you need to use, a common technique given to children in France is to replace the verb you are using by 'prendre', to see whether you would keep the infinitive in the sentence, for example:

The correct form is: Je dois manger (not ‘mangé’) un sandwich
because you would say ‘Je dois prendre un sandwich (not 'pris'), so you need to use the infinitive.

The second ending, -é (or -ée in the feminine form, -és in the plural and -ées in the plural feminine form) is the past participate of the verb. You can use the same technique to distinguish it from ‘-er’:
The correct form this time is: J’ai mangé (not ‘manger’) un sandwich
because you would say ‘J’ai pris un sandwich’ (not ‘j’ai prendre’).

The third ending, -ez, is used only for the ‘vous’ form, either singular (polite ‘vous’) or plural, with either present indicative (Vous mangez.) or imperative (Mangez !). You just need to think about whether or not the verb you’re using is using this 2nd plural person.

 

Solweig O. GCSE French tutor, A Level French tutor, 13 plus  French t...

2 years ago

Answered by Solweig, a Mentoring French tutor with MyTutor

Still stuck? Get one-to-one help from a personally interviewed subject specialist

0 SUBJECT SPECIALISTS

About the author

Solweig O.

Currently unavailable: for regular students

Degree: Modern Languages (Bachelors) - Exeter University

Subjects offered: French, Spanish

French
Spanish

“Hi, I'm a French native speaker, I've been studying Spanish for 10 years, am graduating from the University of Exeter after 2 years at the Sorbonne and I'm here to help!”

MyTutor guarantee

You may also like...

Other Mentoring French questions

How do I know whether I should use -er, -é(e/s) or -ez?

View Mentoring French tutors

Cookies:

We use cookies to improve our service. By continuing to use this website, we'll assume that you're OK with this. Dismiss

mtw:mercury1:status:ok