French for Mischa

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NEGATIVE: I am not playing, I do not play

je ne joue pas nous ne jouons pas
tu ne joues pas vous ne jouez pas
il ne joue pas ils ne jouent pas
elle ne joue pas elles ne jouent pas
on ne joue pas

NEGATIVE INTERROGATIVE: am I not playing? do I not play? (don't)

- - - - - - - - - est-ce que je ne joue pas?
ne joues-tu pas? est-ce que tu ne joues pas?
ne joue-t-il pas est-ce qu'il ne joue pas?
ne joue-t-elle pas?
est-ce qu'elle ne joue pas?
ne joue-t-on pas?
ne jouons-nous pas?
est-ce que nous ne jouons pas?
ne jouez-vous pas?
est-ce que vous ne jouez pas?
ne jouent-ils pas?
est-ce qu'ils ne jouent pas?
ne jouent-elles pas?
est-ce qu'elles ne jouent pas?

NOTE: 1. A verb is made negative by placing "ne" before it and "pas" after it: ne + (verb) + pas.
2. In the inverted question form, "ne" is placed before the verb while "pas" is placed after the subject pronoun: ne + (verb -pronoun) pas.
3. The "e" of "ne" is dropped before a vowel or silent "h:" je n'arrive pas / je n'habite pas
4. the word "si" is used to contradict a negative statement or question:
Ne parlez-vous pas français? Si, je parle français. = Don't you speak French? Yes (indeed, to the contrary), I speak French.

NOTE: There are 4 ways to ask a question (interrogative) in French. The first way is, of course, the easiest, but you will find the 4th way is the most common.

a) straight word order = "Ils aiment la musique, non?" = They like music, don't they?
The only difference from the sentence is the inflection (raising your voice at the end) and adding ",non?"

b) straight word order = "Ils aiment la musique, n'est-ce pas?" = They like music, don't they, or right?
Very close to a) but instead of adding ",non?" you add "n'est-ce pas?"

c) using "Est-ce que (qu')" at the beginning to announce that a question is coming = "Est-ce qu'ils aiment la musique?" (literally) Is it that they like music? (idiomatically) Do they like music?

d) using inversion, or switching the subject pronoun with the verb = "Aiment-ils la musique?" = Do they like music?
NOTE: If there is a noun there as well, it goes at the beginning. For example: "Les garçons aiment-ils la musique?" = Do the boys like music?

REMEMBER that usually there are 3 English translations for the one French sentence:
Ils aiment la musique = They like music. They DO like music. They ARE likING music. Usually your ear will tell you which is the most common in English, but no matter which of those 3 English translations you see, it will be the same ONE French sentence! With the interrogative some of the English translations sound stranger than others: Aiment-ils la musique? = They like music? DO they like music? ARE they likING music?

The examples above were all Affirmative Interrogative. Will you have any difficulty with the Negative Interrogative? (N'aiment-ils pas la musique? = 4th way.)


P.S. Let me know when you meet -IR and/or -RE verbs. There are fewer of them. Next lesson will be the 2 most used Irregular Verbs: être & aller. Some students constantly confuse them because some forms seem close!

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