How to Conjugate "Fêter" (to Celebrate, to Party) in French

You'll Have Reason "to Party" After Learning This Verb Conjugation

Man riding bicycle along Seine River, Paris, France
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The verb fêter is just one word for "to celebrate," "to party," or "to feast" in French. Another option is célébrer and while that may be easier to remember, fêter is easier to conjugate, so you have some choices about which to use. If you like the simpler conjugations, let's take a look at how it's done with fêter.

Conjugating the French Verb Fêter

Fêter follows a very common verb conjugation pattern. If you've worked with other regular -ER verbs, then this lesson should be pretty straightforward. Even if this is your first verb of this style, you can take what you learn here and apply it to words like donner (to give), fermer (to close), and countless others.

Before any verb conjugation, we have to identify the verb stem. For fêter, this is fêt-. It is to this stem that we attach a variety of infinitive endings. The challenge in French is that there's a new ending for every subject pronoun within each of the present, future, and imperfect past tenses. That means you have more words to learn, but you will get the hang of it.

For example, in order to say "I am celebrating," use "je fête" or to say "we will party," use "nous fêterons." Practicing these in context makes them easier to remember.

Subject Present Future Imperfect
je fête fêterai fêtais
tu fêtes fêteras fêtais
il fête fêtera fêtait
nous fêtons fêterons fêtions
vous fêtez fêterez fêtiez
ils fêtent fêteront fêtaient

The Present Participle of Fêter

To use the present participle of fêter as a verb, adjective, noun, or gerund, add -ant to the verb stem. This results in the present participle of fêtant.

The Past Participle and Passé Composé

The past participle of fêter is fêté. This is used to form the past tense known as the passé composé. You will also need to conjugate the auxiliary verb avoir to fit the subject pronoun. As an example, "I partied" is "j'ai fêtê" and "we celebrated" is "nous avons fêtê."

More Simple Fêter Conjugations to Learn

When the act of celebrating is not guaranteed, you will find a use for the subjunctive verb mood. In a similar fashion, the conditional verb form implies that the celebrating is dependent on something else.

The passé simple is often reserved for formal writing. While you may not use it often, knowing both it and the imperfect subjunctive form will improve your French reading skills.

Subject Subjunctive Conditional Passé Simple Imperfect Subjunctive
je fête fêterais fêtai fêtasse
tu fêtes fêterais fêtas fêtasses
il fête fêterait fêta fêtât
nous fêtions fêterions fêtâmes fêtassions
vous fêtiez fêteriez fêtâtes fêtassiez
ils fêtent fêteraient fêtèrent fêtassent

The imperative verb form is particularly useful for fêter because it's often used in exclamations and short statements. When using it, feel free to drop formality and skip the subject pronoun: "tu fête" becomes "fête."

(tu) fête
(nous) fêtons
(vous) fêtez
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Team, ThoughtCo. "How to Conjugate "Fêter" (to Celebrate, to Party) in French." ThoughtCo, Dec. 6, 2021, Team, ThoughtCo. (2021, December 6). How to Conjugate "Fêter" (to Celebrate, to Party) in French. Retrieved from Team, ThoughtCo. "How to Conjugate "Fêter" (to Celebrate, to Party) in French." ThoughtCo. (accessed June 10, 2023).