Avoir Conjugation French

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August 10, 2021

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Have you ever tried to conjugate avoir as you would an ordinary -ir verb? Below are the ways to conjugate the verb without getting confused with the rules for regular -ir verbs. 

Avoir Conjugation French

Definition and Background Information on Avoir

Avoir means “to have” in French. One very common use of the verb is when answering the question of how old are you. This is because when speaking of your age in French, you say how many years you have.

In this example, “I am 27 years old” becomes J’ai vingt-sept ans. Ai being the conjugated version of avoir in the present tense.

As mentioned above, avoir doesn’t follow the same rules as other -ir verbs when it is being conjugated. This can cause a lot of confusion because it is one of the most commonly used verbs in French.

This verb is also used to conjugate other verbs in certain tenses, for example, the passé composé. This is because it is used to say that someone has done something.


Present Tense French Avoir Conjugation Chart

This is the tense that will be most helpful to learn because it is the tense that will also help you to speak in the passé composé tense in conjunction with other verbs.

Subject PronounVouloirEnglish
J’AiI have
TuAsYou have
Il/ElleAHe/she has
NousAvonsWe have
VousAvezYou have
Ils/EllesOntThey have

As is the rule, when je is followed by a vowel, it becomes j’ which is what has happened for the first person in the present tense conjugation of avoir.

Examples

  • J’ai vingt-sept ans - (I am 27 years old)
  • Avez-vous la mission? - (Do you have the assignment?)


Avoir French Conjugation Imperfect Tense

The imperfect tense is a commonly used past tense, in this case being used to say that someone had something.

Subject PronounVouloirEnglish
J’AvaisI had
TuAvaisYou had
Il/ElleAvaitHe/she had
NousAvionsWe had
VousAviezYou had
Ils/EllesAvaientThey had

Examples

  • Ils avaient un bon moment - (They had a great time)
  • Elle avait le même vélo quand elle avait ton âge - (She had that same bike when she was your age)


French Avoir Conjugation Future Tense

The future conjugation of avoir in French can be used to say that someone or something will have something in the future.

Subject PronounVouloirEnglish
J’AuraiI will have
TuAurasYou will have
Il/ElleAuraHe/she will have
NousAuronsWe will have
VousAurezYou will have
Ils/EllesAurontThey will have

Examples

  • Vous aurez une bonne carrière - (You will have a good career)
  • Nous aurons une fête quand tu auras fini - (We will have a party when you finish)


French Conjugation of Avoir in the Conditional Tense

The conditional tense is another future tense conjugation of avoir. It can be used to say that someone will have something in the future if it isn’t certain.

Subject PronounVouloirEnglish
J’AuraisI will have
TuAuraisYou will have
Il/ElleAuraitHe/she will have
NousAurionsWe will have
VousAuriezYou will have
Ils/EllesAuraientThey will have

Example

  • j'aurais peut-être été - (I might have been)


Passé Composé Conjugation of Avoir in French

As explained earlier, avoir is used as an auxiliary verb for other French verbs in this tense. For the passé composé tense of avoir, it needs to be conjugated twice in a sense.

Firstly, you will use the present tense of avoir, as is shown in the table above, then use it in conjunction with the past participle of the verb (eu).

Subject PronounVouloirEnglish
J’Ai euI have had
TuAs euYou have had
Il/ElleA euHe/she has had
NousAvons euWe have had
VousAvez euYou have had
Ils/EllesOnt euThey have had

So, for this tense as long as you have learnt the French conjugation of avoir in the present tense and know that the past participle of the verb is “eu”, you shouldn’t have any issues.

Examples

  • Il a eu assez - (He has had enough)
  • Tu as eu tout le week-end pour y travailler - (You have had the whole weekend to work on it)


Avoir Subjunctive Tense Conjugation in French

Subject PronounVouloirEnglish Pronoun
J’AieI
TuAiesYou
Il/ElleAitHe/she
NousAyonsWe
VousAyezYou
Ils/EllesAientThey


French Verb Conjugation of Avoir in the Pluperfect Tense

The pluperfect tense, or plus-que-parfait, is the English past perfect tense. This means that it is used primarily to explain something that happened before something else.

Subject PronounVouloirEnglish Pronoun
J’Avais euI
TuAvais euYou
Il/ElleAvait euHe/she
NousAvions euWe
VousAviez euYou
Ils/EllesAvaient euThey

To conjugate this tense in French, you need to combine the imperfect tense conjugation of avoir and the verb’s past participle.


French Conjugation of Avoir in Le Passé Historique

Also known as La passé simple, this tense is mainly used in writing to describe something that has happened in the past.

Subject PronounVouloirEnglish Pronoun
J’EusI
TuEusYou
Il/ElleEutHe/she
NousEûmesWe
VousEûtesYou
Ils/EllesEurentThey


Passé Antérieur Avoir Conjugation in French

This tense is also mainly used in formal written French. It is formed by combining le passé simple and the past participle of avoir.

Subject PronounVouloirEnglish Pronoun
J’Eus euI
TuEus euYou
Il/ElleEut euHe/she
NousEûmes euWe
VousEûtes euYou
Ils/EllesEurent euThey


Futur Antérieur Avoir French Conjugation

This tense is used to describe an event that will happen in the future at a certain time.

To conjugate this version of the French verb avoir, you will need to combine the future tense and the past participle.

Subject PronounVouloirEnglish Pronoun
J’Aurai euI
TuAuras euYou
Il/ElleAura euHe/she
NousAurons euWe
VousAurez euYou
Ils/EllesAuront euThey


The Near Future Tense Conjugation of Avoir in French

The near future tense, or futur proche, is used to discuss something that will definitely happen in the future. This is in contrast to the subjunctive tense, which is conditional.

In this tense, the present conjugation of aller is used in conjunction with the full verb avoir.

Subject PronounVouloirEnglish Pronoun
J’Vais avoirI
TuVas avoirYou
Il/ElleVa avoirHe/she
NousAllons avoirWe
VousAllez avoirYou
Ils/EllesVont avoirThey


Common Phrases Using the Conjugation of Avoir in French

Avoir can be used to say if you want or need something as well. When I was learning to speak French, I was told to think of it as having a need or want for something as it would make it easier to remember that way.

  • Avoir besoin de... - (To need something)
  • Avoir envie de… - (To want something)

Avoir can also be used to talk about whether you are hungry, thirsty, hot, or cold. Although the verb is only to be used in this way when it is something that you are feeling.

  • Avoir faim - (To be hungry)
  • Avoir soif - (To be thirsty)
  • Avoir froid - (To feel cold)
  • Avoir chaud - (To feel hot)


Conclusion

Because avoir is such a commonly used verb in French and doesn’t have the same rules for conjugation as other ir verbs do, it is important that you take the time to learn these conjugations.

Other articles on verb conjugations can be found here:

About the author 

Sarah grew up in Northampton, England. She loves to travel, write, and explore because of the ability to immerse herself in a different culture and potentially learn a new skill. Sarah uses her writing to share these experiences with other people to help them choose a location for their holiday or learn the skills for themselves.

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