Conjugating the Simple French Tenses of 'Revenir' (to Come Back)

"Revenir" is conjugated like all verbs ending in '-venir' and '-tenir'

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Revenir is a frequently used irregular French verb that is conjugated the same as all other verbs ending in -venir and -tenir. Note that the conjugations in the table below are only those for simple tenses; compound conjugations, which include a form of the auxiliary verb être and the past participle revenu, are not included.

Meanings and Expressions of 'Revenir'

Revenir is a flexible verb meaning "to come back," "to come back home," "to return" and other related concepts, and it is used in many French idiomatic expressions, such as:

  • Je reviens (tout de suite). > I'll be right back.
  • revenir en arrière > to go back in time; to retrace one's steps
  • revenir cher > to be expensive
  • faire revenir > (in cooking) to brown
  • revenir au point de départ > to go back to the starting point
  • D'où nous revenez-vous ? > Where have you been?

Other French Verbs Ending in '-VENIR'

Most verbs that, like revenir, end in -venir use être as their auxiliary verb. A few, such as circonvenir, prévenir and se souvenir (see below) use avoir.

  • advenir > to happen
  • circonvenir > to circumvent, get around
  • contrevenir > to contravene
  • convenir > to suit, be suitable
  • devenir > to become
  • intervenir > to intervene
  • parvenir > to reach, achieve
  • prévenir > to warn
  • provenir > to come from, be due to
  • revenir > to come back
  • se souvenir > to remember
  • subvenir > to provide for
  • survenir > to occur, take place

French Verbs Ending in '-TENIR'

Verbs that end in -tenir follow the same conjugation pattern as verbs like revenir that end in -venir, except -tenir verbs take avoir as their auxiliary verb.

  • s'abstenir > to refrain, abstain from
  • appartenir > to belong to
  • contenir > to contain
  • détenir > to detain
  • entretenir > to look after, support, foster, keep alive
  • maintenir  > to maintain
  • obtenir > to obtain
  • retenir > to retain
  • soutenir > to support
  • tenir > to hold, keep

How to Memorize French Verb Conjugations

Tip: Concentrate on the most useful tenses (présent, imparfait, passé composé) and get used to using them in context. Once you've mastered them, move on to the rest.

Training with an audio source such as the French Verb Drills Audiobook Series may also be helpful. There are many liaisons, elisions and modern glidings used with French verbs, and the written form may mislead you into using the wrong pronunciation.

Simple Conjugations of the Irregular French Verb 'Revenir'

Present Future Imperfect Present participle
je reviens reviendrai revenais revenant
tu reviens reviendras revenais
il revient reviendra revenait Passé composé
nous revenons reviendrons revenions Auxiliary verb être
vous revenez reviendrez reveniez Past participle revenu
ils reviennent reviendront revenaient
Subjunctive Conditional Passé simple Imperfect subjunctive
je revienne reviendrais revins revinsse
tu reviennes reviendrais revins revinsses
il revienne reviendrait revint revînt
nous revenions reviendrions revînmes revinssions
vous reveniez reviendriez revîntes revinssiez
ils reviennent reviendraient revinrent revinssent
(tu) reviens
(nous) revenons
(vous) revenez
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Team, ThoughtCo. "Conjugating the Simple French Tenses of 'Revenir' (to Come Back)." ThoughtCo, Dec. 6, 2021, Team, ThoughtCo. (2021, December 6). Conjugating the Simple French Tenses of 'Revenir' (to Come Back). Retrieved from Team, ThoughtCo. "Conjugating the Simple French Tenses of 'Revenir' (to Come Back)." ThoughtCo. (accessed June 8, 2023).