foreign languages

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How does someone differentiate between
french's direct pronouns and indirect pronouns?

  • foreign languages -

    I'll send this to Mme, our French expert, SraJMcGin.

  • foreign languages -


    If you had a good English class explaining "direct objects" you are half way there! I'm not sure if I should begin at the VERY beginning, or. . . . .

    DIRECT OBJECTS in French:
    me (m') = me
    te (t') = you, familiar & singular
    le (l') = him, it (masc. sing. object)
    la (l') = her it (any fem. sing. object)
    se (s') = himself, herself (these are reflexive pronouns which you probably have not had yet)

    nous = us
    vous = you, singular & formal or plural
    les = them (people OR things)
    se (s') = themselves (reflexive)


    They go BEFORE the verb of which they are the direct object (except in affirmative commands) to PLAY SAFE, but

    They go directly after the verb (in affirmative commands) and are linked to it by a hyphen (me and te change to MOI and TOI after the verb.)

    In the negative imperative (command) the object pronouns are again in front of the verb.

    When you get to indirect-object commands, let me know because some verbs that LOOK like they would take in indirect, do not. I won't explain that here because for the moment, you are only concerned with the d.o.

    When you get to the past tense (passé composé) there is yet another thing to learn! One step at a time! You WILL get there!

    Bonne chance = feel free to ask any other question you might have.


    Je l'étudie. = I study it (or him or her)
    Nous ne la voyons pas. - We do not see h er.
    Elle va les finir. - She is going to finish them.
    Ne l'a-t-il pas lu? Hasn't he read it?
    NOTE: the verbs écouter (listen to), regarder (look at), chercher (look for), attendre (wait for) and demander (ask for) take a direct object in French (because the prepositions are part of the verb).
    Je les écoute. - I'm listening to them.
    On la cherche. - They are looking for her. (or it)

    Affirmative commands:
    Finissez-le = Finish it.
    Vendons-les. - Let's sell them.

    Negative commands:
    Ne le finissez pas. - Don't finish it.
    Ne les vendons pas. - Let's not sell them.

    Digest that first and ask any questions you have about what you still don't understand.

    Sra (aka Mme)

  • foreign languages -

    Part II:



    me (m) = me, to, for, at, from me
    te (t’) = you, to, for, at, from you (familiar, singular)
    lui = him, to, for, at, from him (it - masculine singular)
    lui = her, to, for, at, from her (it - feminine singular)
    se (s’) = to, for, at, from himself (herself)
    nous = us, to, for, at, from us
    vous = you, to, for, at, from you (formal singular or plural)
    leur = them, to, for, at, from them (people or things)
    se (s’) = to, for, at, from themselves


    Like direct object pronouns, indirect object pronouns are placed immediately before the verb of which they are the object (except in affirmative commands)


    Me parle-t-il? = Is he speaking to me?
    Ne lui avez-vous pas écrit? = Haven’t you written to him/her?

    In affirmative commands (imperative) only, the object pronoun is placed directly after the verb and is linked to it by a hyphen. The pronouns me and te change to moi and toi after the verb:

    Parlons-lui - Let’s speak to him/her.

    The negative imperative:

    Ne lui parlons pas. - Let’s not speak to him/her.

    Sra (aka Mme)

  • foreign languages -





    The verbs écouter ( to listen to), regarder (to look at), chercher (to look for), attendre (to wait for) and demander (to ask for) take a direct object in French (because they are hiding the prepositions “to, at, for” inside the infinitive.)

    On la regarde. - They are looking at her.
    Qui les cherche? - Who is looking for them?


    The verbs répondre (to answer/give an answer to), obéir (to obey/give obedience to), and désobeir (to disobey/give disobedience to) take an indirect object in French.

    Je lui réponds. - I answer her/give an answer TO her.)
    Elle leur obéit. - She obeys them/give obedience TO them.)

    When you get to the passé composé, Past Participles of verbs conjugated with avoir and of reflexive verbs agree in gender and number with the PRECEDING direct object (if there is one).

    Je les ai vus. - I saw/have seen them.
    Elle s’est lavée. - She washed herself.

    Sra (aka Mme)

    Now, let me know when you get to Double Object Pronouns - or a Direct Object + an Indirect Object Pronoun!

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