French Subjunctive Irregular Conjugations

Conjugating irregular verbs and stem-changing verbs into the subjunctive

French subjunctive
ThoughtCo 

While not as difficult as using the French subjunctive, conjugating irregular and stem-changing verbs into the subjunctive can be a little tricky.

Stem-changing verbs and most irregular verbs follow the same pattern as regular verbs for the singular conjugations (je, tu, il/elle/on) as well as the third person plural (ils/elles): the subjunctive stem is derived from the present tense conjugation of ils.

boire envoyer prendre venir

present tense:

ils

boivent

envoient

prennent

viennent
stem boiv- envoi-

prenn-

vienn-
subjunctive endings: boire envoyer prendre venir

... que je

-e

boive

envoie

prenne

vienne

... que tu

-es

boives

envoies

prennes

viennes

... qu'il/elle/on

-e

boive

envoie

prenne

vienne

... qu'ils/elles

-ent

boivent

envoient

prennent

viennent

However, the nous and vous forms of the subjunctive find their stems in the present tense conjugation of nous:

present tense:

nous

buvons

envoyons

prenons

venons
stem buv- envoy- pren- ven-
subjunctive endings :

... que nous

-ions

buvions

envoyions

prenions

venions

... que vous

-iez

buviez

envoyiez

preniez

veniez

This two-stem subjunctive pattern applies to all stem-changing verbs as well as all but seven irregular verbs.

Five verbs have irregular subjunctive stems but take the same endings as above:

One stem Two stems*
faire pouvoir savoir aller vouloir
stem(s) fass- puiss- sach- aill- / all- veuill- / voul-

... que je (j')

fasse

puisse

sache

aille

veuille

... que tu

fasses

puisses

saches

ailles

veuilles

... qu'il/elle/on

fasse

puisse

sache

aille

veuille

... que nous

fassions

puissions

sachions

allions

voulions

... que vous

fassiez

puissiez

sachiez

alliez

vouliez

... qu'ils/elles

fassent

puissent

sachent

aillent

veuillent

*These two verbs have different stems for je/tu/il/ils and nous/vous.

And finally, two verbs have irregular stems as well irregular endings:

avoir être

... que je (j')

aie

sois

... que tu

aies

sois

... qu'il/elle/on

ait

soit

... que nous

ayons

soyons

... que vous

ayez

soyez

... qu'ils/elles

aient

soient