Tuesday, November 15, 2011

La Leçon de Française

For those of you who would like to brush up on your French, or perhaps even learn some, from time to time I will post a petite leçon de française illustrated by one of my drawings. Today's lesson covers a use for the subjunctive mood. Many students of French get in a bad mood when they see the subjunctive because it's a pesky thing they have to learn after they have mastered the indicative mood

Description in a nutshell: The indicative mood expresses a certainty or reality. The subjunctive mood expresses a doubt, a wish, a desire or a speculation on things that are not a reality. It's also used with impersonal expressions like "it's necessary that." It's not a tense, like past, present or future. It's a mood! A good mood. So don't get tense.

I'm here to tell you not to get moody over the subjunctive. It's actually fun. First, learn when to use it. Then learn how to conjugate it (including the irregular conjugations -- grrrr.)

In the example above we see a usage for the subjunctive. A woman is giving an order in the third person. It says, "Let him do the dishes!" Fasse is the third-person singular form of the verb faire (to do) in the subjunctive. Gloria Steinem would approve.

P.S. My first verb book was Barron's 501 French Verbs. That wasn't enough, so I got Bescherelle's Complete Guide to Conjugating 12,000 French Verbs

No comments:

Post a Comment