Vouloir French Conjugation

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August 24, 2021

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Have you ever tried to conjugate vouloir as you would a regular -ir verb and got the wrong word? Well, let me show you how to do it the right way.

Vouloir French Conjugation

Definition

Vouloir is the French verb meaning to want. So, for example if you want to say “I want an orange” that would be “Je veux une orange”, because veux is the conjugation of the verb vouloir for “I”.

This verb is an irregular ir verb which means, it won’t follow the same rules as every other verb ending in ir will.


Present Tense Vouloir Conjugation in French

This is the most common tense that will be used in relation to vouloir, as it will mean that you will be communicating a current want.

Subject PronounVouloirEnglish
JeVeuxI want
TuVeuxYou want
Il/ElleVeutHe/she wants
NousVoulonsWe want
NousVoulonsWe want
VousVoulezYou want
Ils/EllesVeulentThey want

Another common way to say “you want” or “do you want?” in French is with “Voulez-vous”. This is just the pronoun and verb switched around and hyphenated but means exactly the same thing.

Also, it is clear in this tense why vouloir is known as an irregular ir verb because the first three conjugations don’t retain the stem of the word.

Examples:

  • Je veux une orange - (I want an orange)
  • Nous voulons nous marier bientôt - (We want to get married soon)


Vouloir French Conjugation in the Imperfect Tense

The imperfect tense is past tense, used to talk about what you wanted in the past, so is roughly translated as “I wanted”.

Subject PronounVouloirEnglish
JeVoulaisI wanted
TuVoulaisYou wanted
Il/ElleVoulaitHe/she wanted
NousVoulionsWe wanted
VousVouliezYou wanted
Ils/EllesVoulaientThey wanted

In this tense, vouloir follows the same rules as regular er verbs in how it is conjugated.


Future Tense French Conjugation of Vouloir

This tense will be used when you are talking about what you know that you will want in the future.

Subject PronounVouloirEnglish
JeVoudraiI will want
TuVoudrasYou will want
Il/ElleVoudraHe/she will want
NousVoudronsWe will want
VousVoudrezYou will want
Ils/EllesVoudrontThey will want

Example:

  • Ils voudront bientôt fermer la cuisine - (They will want to be closing the kitchen soon)


French Conjugation in the Conditional Tense of Vouloir

This tense is used to express what you might want in the future, so potentially when talking about possible careers, homes, or activities. As a result, when using this tense, the conjugation of vouloir is usually followed by another verb.

Subject PronounVouloirEnglish
JeVoudraisI would like
TuVoudraisYou would like
Il/ElleVoudraitHe/she would like
NousVoudrionsWe would like
VousVoudriezYou would like
Ils/EllesVoudraientThey would like

The conditional tense and the future tense, have very similar conjugations, and both mean roughly the same thing. This makes it easy to get the pair mixed up, so it is important to pay attention to which is being used.

Example:

  • Je voudrais habiter à Paris - (I would like to live in Paris)


French Vouloir Conjugation in the Passé Composé Tense

The passé composé combines the conjugated version of “avoir” in the present and past participle tenses of “vouloir” to create this tense.

So, this tense’s conjugation of “vouloir” in French is rather easy to remember if you have learnt how to conjugate the verb “avoir”.

Subject PronounVouloirEnglish
J’Ai VouluI have wanted
TuAs VouluYou have wanted
Il/ElleA VouluHe/she have wanted
NousAvons VouluWe have wanted
VousAvez VouluYou have wanted
Ils/EllesOnt VouluThey have wanted

Example:

  • Ils ont voulu reprendre l'entreprise pendant un certain temps - (They have wanted to take over the company for some time)

The Pluperfect Tense Vouloir Conjugation in French

Subject PronounVouloirEnglish
J’Avais VouluI
TuAvais VouluYou
Il/ElleAvait VouluHe/She
NousAvions VouluWe
VousAviez VouluYou
Ils/EllesAvaient VouluThey

French Verb Conjugation of Vouloir in the Subjunctive Tense

Subject PronounVouloirEnglish
JeVeuilleI
TuVeuillesYou
Il/ElleVeuilleHe/She
NousVoulionsWe
VousVouliezYou
Ils/EllesVeuillentThey


The Pluperfect Tense Vouloir Conjugation in French in Subjunctive Tense

Subject PronounVouloirEnglish
J’Eusse VouluI
TuEusses VouluYou
Il/ElleEût VouluHe/She
NousEussions VouluWe
VousEussiez VouluYou
Ils/EllesEussent VouluThey


Le Passé Historique (Passé simple) Conjugation of Vouloir in French

Subject PronounVouloirEnglish
JeVoulusI
TuVoulusYou
Il/ElleVoulutHe/She
NousVoulûmesWe
VousVoulûtesYou
Ils/EllesVoulurentThey


The Passé Antérieur Tense Conjugation of Vouloir

Subject PronounVouloirEnglish
J’Eus VouluI
TuEus VouluYou
Il/ElleEut VouluHe/She
NousEûmes VouluWe
VousEûtes VouluYou
Ils/EllesEurent VouluThey


French Conjugation of Vouloir in the Futur Antérieur Tense

Subject PronounVouloirEnglish
J’Aurai VouluI
TuAuras VouluYou
Il/ElleAura VouluHe/She
NousAurons VouluWe
VousAurez VouluYou
Ils/EllesAuront VouluThey


Other Resources

Everyone learns in different ways, so if you think you would learn the French verb conjugation of Vouloir better when you aren’t reading tables there are other resources available.

These include music videos on this conjugation, such as this one, where you can learn the French vouloir conjugation through song. 

Alternatively, there is an audiobook available here for not just Vouloir but a variety of different verbs.


Conclusion

Other tenses have different conjugations for these verbs, but these are the most commonly used when talking. As vouloir is an irregular verb, it will not follow the same rules as the other ir verbs, so you will need to learn both the normal ir verb conjugations as well as the French conjugations for vouloir and other irregular verbs.

Another irregular ir verb is voir, meaning to see, the conjugation for which can be found here.

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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