How to Conjugate the Verb pouvoir (can)

view of the Eiffel tower on a sunny day

“Pouvoir” is a powerful verb. Once you know it, you can easily ask people to do something, and express what you can do. Here is how to conjugate and use “pouvoir”. Conjugation of pouvoir (can) I voluntarily chose not to include tenses like “passé simple”, because unless you are interested in French literature, you won’t need …

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The ultimate guide to the passé composé (and a handy rule)

Dr and Mrs Vandertrampp

“Please don’t use the passé simple tense in your essay.” This is the first sentence our professor told us, a group of French college students, as we were about to take an exam. “Most French college students don’t know how to use the passé simple properly”, he went on. My professor was right. Most French …

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How to use and conjugate the French verb nettoyer

A yellow sponge sits on a soapy oven tray.

Are you one of those people whose house is clean but cluttered, rather than neat and tidy? If so, the French verb nettoyer is for you!   Nettoyer means “to clean” but also has a few more subtle meanings. Let’s learn about this clean-cut verb whose meaning is surprisingly precise. Nettoyer conjugation Nettoyer is an irregular verb …

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All about “fuir”, a French verb you don’t need to avoid

A man runs in a field of tall grass or wheat. We see him in the middle ground,the wheat is all around us and at eye level nearly in the foreground.

There’s no need to run away from the French verb fuir! It may look a bit strange, but once you understand its basic meaning, it’s easy to use.  Let’s learn how to conjugate fuir, what it means, and how it differs from its cousin, the verb s’enfuir. Fuir conjugation Fuir is an irregular verb that’s conjugated with …

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How to use and conjugate ouvrir | With Audio

An open window gives out onto a view of Parisian rooftops. We see the Eiffel Tower in the far distance. The day is sunny, with lots of puffy white clouds in the sky.

The French verb ouvrir means “to open”. Like its English equivalent, it’s open to many different possibilities when it comes to meanings and uses. Let’s open our minds and learn more about the verb ouvrir! What does ouvrir mean? The verb ouvrir  usually means “to open”. As in English, this can be used literally or …

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What to use instead of the present perfect in French

An old-fashioned, lime-green colored alarm clock with ringers on top lays against a backgrond divided into salmon pink on one siade and mint green on the other.

Have you ever…wondered how to say “Have you ever in French?” Don’t worry: the confusion you might have felt while wracking your brain for an answer is totally understandable. This verb tense, which is called the present perfect in English, flat-out doesn’t exist in French!  I can’t tell you why that is, but I can …

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