How to Conjugate the French Verb 'Entendre' ('to Understand')

A Regular '-Re' Verb That Follows Predictable Conjugation Patterns

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Entendre is a regular -re verb that follows distinct, predictable conjugation patterns. All -er verbs share the same conjugation patterns in all tenses and moods.

Generally speaking, there are five major categories of verbs in French: regular -er, -ir, -re; stem-changing; and irregular. The smallest category of regular French verbs is -re verbs.

'Entendre' Is a Regular 'er' Verb

To use -re verbs, remove the -re ending from the infinitive, and you're left with the stem. Conjugate the verb by adding the -re endings shown in the table below to the verb stem. The same applies to entendre.

Note that the conjugation table below includes only simple conjugations. It does not include compound conjugations, which consist of a form of the auxiliary verb avoir and the past participle entendu.

The Most Common '-er' Verbs

These are the most common regular -re verbs:

  • attendre > to wait (for)
  • défendre > to defend
  • descendre > to descend
  • entendre > to hear
  • étendre > to stretch
  • fondre > to melt
  • pendre > to hang, suspend
  • perdre > to lose
  • prétendre > to claim
  • rendre > to give back, return
  • répandre > to spread, scatter
  • répondre > to answer
  • vendre > to sell

'Entendre': Meanings 

The most common meaning of the French verb entendre is "to hear," but it can also mean: 

  • to listen to
  • to intend (to do something)
  • to mean
  • to understand (formal)

In the pronominal form, s'entendre means:

  • reflexive: to hear oneself (speak, think)
  • reciprocal: to agree, to get along
  • idiomatic: to be heard/audible, to be used

'Entendre': Expressions 

Entendre is used in many idiomatic expressions. Learn how to hear about, intend to, attend mass and more with expressions using entendre.

  • entendre parler de... > to hear (someone talking) about... 
  • entendre dire que... > to hear (it said) that...
  • entendre la messe > to hear / attend mass
  • entendre raison > to listen to reason
  • entendre mal (de l'oreille gauche/droite) > to not hear well (with one's left/right ear)
  • entendre les témoins (law) > to hear the witnesses
  • à l'entendreà t'entendreà vous entendre > to hear him/her talk, to hear you talk
  • à qui veut entendre > to anyone who will listen
  • donner à entendre (à quelqu'un) que... > to give (someone) to understand / the impression that...
  • faire entendre raison à > to make someone see sense / reason
    faire entendre sa voix > to make oneself heard
    faire entendre un son > to make a sound
  • se faire entendre (dans un débat) > to make oneself heard (in a debate)
  • laisser entendre (à quelqu'un) que... > to give (someone) to understand / the impression that...
  • Ce qu'il faut entendre tout de même ! (informal) > The things people say!
  • Entendez-vous par là que... ? > Do you mean / Are you trying to say that... ?
  • Faites comme vous l'entendez. > Do what you think is best.
  • Il / Elle n'entend pas la plaisanterie. (old-fashioned) > He / She can't take a joke.
  • Il / Elle n'entend rien à... > He / She doesn't know the first thing about...
  • Il / Elle ne l'entend pas de cette oreille. > He / She won't accept that.
  • Il / Elle ne veut rien entendre. > He / She just won't listen, doesn't want to hear it
  • Il / Elle n'y entend pas malice. > He / She means no harm by it.
  • Il / Elle va m'entendre ! > I'm going to give him / her a piece of my mind!
  • J'ai déjà entendu pire ! > I've heard worse!
  • Je n'entends pas céder. > I have no intention of giving in.
  • Je vous entends. > I understand, I see what you mean.
  • On entendrait voler une mouche. > You could hear a pin drop.
  • Qu'entendez-vous par là ? > What do you mean by that? 
  • Qu'est-ce que j'etends ? > What did you say? Did I hear you correctly?
  • ... tu entends ! > ... you hear me?!
  • s'entendre à (faire quelque chose) (formal) > to be very good at (doing something)
  • s'entendre à merveille > to get along very well
  • s'entendre comme larrons en foire > to be thick as thieves (to be very close, get along extremely well)
  • s'y entendre pour (faire quelque chose) > to be very good at (doing something)
  • cela s'entend > naturally, of course
  • Entendons-nous bien. > Let's be very clear about this.
  • Il faudrait s'entendre ! > Make up your mind!
  • Je m'y entends ! Il s'y entend ! etc. > I know what I'm doing! He knows what he's doing!
  • Tu ne t'entends pas ! > You don't know what you're saying!

Simple Conjugations of the Regular French '-re' Verb 'Entendre'

Present Future Imperfect Present participle


entends entendrai entendais entendant
tu entends



il entend entendra entendait
nous entendons entendrons entendions
vous entendez entendrez entendiez
ils entendent entendront entendaient
Subjunctive Conditional Passé simple Imperfect subjunctive


entende entendrais entendis entendisse
tu entendes entendrais entendis entendisses
il entende entendrait entendit entendît
nous entendions


entendîmes entendissions
vous entendiez entendriez entendîtes


ils entendent entendraient entendirent entendissent







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Team, ThoughtCo. "How to Conjugate the French Verb 'Entendre' ('to Understand')." ThoughtCo, Dec. 6, 2021, Team, ThoughtCo. (2021, December 6). How to Conjugate the French Verb 'Entendre' ('to Understand'). Retrieved from Team, ThoughtCo. "How to Conjugate the French Verb 'Entendre' ('to Understand')." ThoughtCo. (accessed June 2, 2023).