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Conjugate regular -ir verbs in Le Passé Simple

Look at these -ir verbs in le Passé Simple:

Cette nuit-là, je dormis paisiblement.
That night, I slept peacefully.

Quand tu partis pour la guerre, mon cœur se brisa.
When you left for war, my heart broke.

Le prince choisit Cendrillon parmi toutes les danseuses.
The prince chose Cinderella among all the dancers.

Nous sortîmes alors du placard.
We then came out of the closet. 

Vous réussîtes à vous libérer.
You managed to free yourselves.

Les enfants grandirent très vite.
The children grew up very fast.


To conjugate -ir verbs in le Passé Simple, here is what to do:

Stem of the verb (without -IR) + endings: -is, -is, -it, -îmes, -îtes, -irent


Note that the 'je/tu/il/elle/on' forms for regular -ir verbs like finir are exactly the same as the Présent conjugations. The context will give you the tense in those cases.

Learn more about these related French grammar topics

Examples and resources



Kwiziq community member

18 April 2018

1 reply

I thought réunir was conjugated as an ´ir’ Verb.

if it is conjugated as an ´ir’ verb The shouldn’t the third person plural in the present be réunirent and not réunissent? If it’s nor conjugated as ´ir’ then The explanation for it being irregular is not available. Does that make sens or have I missed something?


Kwiziq community member

18 April 2018


Hi Mary,

3rd person plural of réunir in passé simple is réunirent. Réunissent is present tense. I suspect you knew that already but without knowing the sentence in question I can't comment further.

By the way, here is a handy conjugation table:

-- Chris (not a native speaker).


Kwiziq community member

4 April 2018

1 reply

I have never studied passé simple. Where do I start on this.


Kwiziq community member

4 April 2018


Hello Anne,

The way I did it was to let kwiziq take the lead. Step by step you will first learn to recognize the verb forms of passé simple and later you will be prompted to reproduce them actively. Besides kwiziq I also read French books (e.g., "Le petit prince") which used passé simple.

The important point to remember is that for a French kid growing up in France, passé simple is as now to him as it is to you. And it is just one other verb form, so really no biggie.

-- Chris (not a native speaker).

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