How to Conjugate "Élire" (to Elect"

"Elect" to Learn These Tricky French Verb Conjugations

French Elections
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In French, the verb élire means "to elect." Whenever you want to use it in the past tense "elected" or the future tense "will elect," you will need to conjugate the verb. French students know that this can be a challenge and élire is one of those tricky irregular verbs.

Conjugating the French Verb Élire

French verb conjugations are more complex than they are in English. That's because the verb endings change not only with the tense of the sentence but also with the subject pronoun.

Élire is an irregular verb and it's similar to other words like lire (to read), réélire (to re-elect), and relire (to re-read, replay). While this is not the most common conjugation pattern, these few words do make learning the entire group a little easier.

To conjugate élire, pair the subject pronoun with the tense. For instance, "I elect" is "j'élis" while "we will elect" is "nous élirons." Practice each of these in context to learn how to use them in your French conversations.

Subject Present Future Imperfect
j' élis élirai élisais
tu élis éliras élisais
il élit élira élisait
nous élisons élirons élisions
vous élisez élirez élisiez
ils élisent éliront élisaient

The Present Participle of Élire

The present participle is another verb form that you should know. To form it, add -ant to the verb stem to produce élisant. Beyond using it as a verb, you will also find it helpful as an adjective, gerund, or noun in some circumstances.

The Past Participle and Passé Composé

For the past tense of élire, you can choose either the imperfect or the passé composé. To construct the latter, begin with the subject pronoun and conjugate the auxiliary verb avoir to match it. Then, attach the past participle élu.

The passé composé comes together quickly: "I have elected" is "j'ai élu" and "we elected" is "nous avons élu."

More Simple Élire Conjugations

Among other simple conjugations of élire that French students should know are the following. You may not use them often, but they can be quite handy to know.

In rare instances, and primarily when reading or writing, you may see the passé simple or the imperfect subjunctive. More frequently, the subjunctive and conditional verb moods are used. Each implies no guarantee to the verb's action in some form or fashion.

Subject Subjunctive Conditional Passé Simple Imperfect Subjunctive
j' élise élirais élus élusse
tu élises élirais élus élusses
il élise élirait élut élût
nous élisions élirions élûmes élussions
vous élisiez éliriez élûtes élussiez
ils élisent éliraient élurent élussent

To use élire in exclamations, demands, and short requests, use the imperative form. When doing so, skip the subject pronoun and use "élis" rather than "tu élis."

(tu) élis
(nous) élisons
(vous) élisez
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Team, ThoughtCo. "How to Conjugate "Élire" (to Elect"." ThoughtCo, Dec. 6, 2021, Team, ThoughtCo. (2021, December 6). How to Conjugate "Élire" (to Elect". Retrieved from Team, ThoughtCo. "How to Conjugate "Élire" (to Elect"." ThoughtCo. (accessed May 30, 2023).