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French verbs that require or trigger the subjunctive

Here is a list of (hopefully) ALL the verbs that require the subjunctive after it.
Indicative = any other tense than the subjunctive
Subjunctive = a tense that suggests there is some doubt.
Remember that you do not need to use it when the subjects are the same and the second verb is in the present tense (although some verbs can use a past tense such as regretter). If I wanted to say "I want to do it" then "Je veux que je le fasse" is avoided and a more simpler sentence is used "je veux le faire".
Also with verbs that do not name anyone (impersonal verbs) such as il faut can be used in a similar way:
il a fallu que je le porte = I had to carry it
il a fallu le porter = I had to carry it
but if it was unclear who I meant and I used an indirect object (il m'a ...) then this would be literary.
Some verbs require à or de before another verb like regretter de + infinitive.
Je regrette de parler ... = I'm sorry that I speak ...
De is used after an adjective + infinitive:
Je suis désolé de parler ...
Some have something called a "perfect infinitive" afterwards. All this means is that you can say "have" afterwards and still avoid the subjunctive (or any clause starting with que):
Je regrette de vous avoir fait attendre = I'm sorry to have kept you waiting (here you avoid saying "je regrette que je vous aie ... ). This sentence may still look odd because vous can be a subject or an object of a sentence (vous me voyez = you are seeing me, je vous vois = I'm seeing you)
Check my table to see if a verb needs à or de.

I have listed everything in order but if you are looking for a reflexive verb (one that starts with s') then I have put it in as if the s' is not there (so 'se réjouir que' is with other words starting with r).
It is easy to miss out the 'que' when translating from English. When introducing a new subject to the sentence, you must put in 'que' e.g.
Je veux qu'il le fasse = I want him to do it (I and him are both subjects).
Note that in a relative clause (a second part of the sentence that identifies what you are talking about) that use ne... rien or ne... personne (nothing or nobody) or quelqu'un or quelque chose (someone or somebody) uses the subjunctive because you are not expressing a fact:
Je ne connais personne qui puisse parler anglais = I don't know anyone who can speak English (the doubt is that there may be someone that can)
Il n'y a rien que je puisse faire = There is nothing that I can do (the doubt is that there may be something I can do)
Y a-t-il quelqu'un qui puisse parler anglais? = Is there someone that can speak English?
J'aimerais inventer quelque chose qui charge cette pile = I'd like to invent something that will charge this battery.
In other words, if it is indefinite or negative, use the subjunctive.

Note that I use +ve = positive sentences, -ve = negative sentences and ? = a question as quick symbols or emphasis on certain verbs.
I have sometimes shown verbs in the present tense (like il est ...) but of course you can use past tenses too (il était possible que...).

Other uses trigger the subjunctive like with some conjunctions or set expressions like vaille que vaille = Somehow or other ...
Accepter que to accept that
Accorder que to grant, attribute, tune
Admettre que This uses the subjunctive in certain circumstances. Can you help me with this?
J'admets que vous avez raison = I admit that you are right (indicative)
Admettons qu'il vienne = Let's suppose that he's coming (subjunctive)
En admettant que ... + subjunctive= Assuming that ...
Adorer que To love that
Affirmer que
? or -ve
to affirm that
Aimer que To like that
or like / not like that fact that...
Aimer mieux que To prefer that
apprécier que to appreciate that
arriveil arrive on it's own can mean "he will be hear any minute".
'Il arrive que + subjunctive' means something like "it happens that ..." e.g.
il arrive qu'il soit en retard = he is sometimes late
Attendre que  To wait until
J'attends qu'il s'en aille = I'm waiting for him to leave
s'attendre à ce que to expect -  possibe indicative use – see croire
Avoir...
To be (literally – to have)
besoin queneed that
envie quewish that
honte que ashamed that
l’impression que
? or -ve
the impression that
peur que...(ne) afraid that (non-negative ne is literary)
C'est que
? or -ve
It's that / because
The subjunctive used in questions or negative sentences
ça m'ennuie queit annoys me that
but:
s'ennuyer de quelqu'un / quelque chose = to miss somebody / something - or use the verb manquer
s'ennuyer = to be bored
Cela ne vous ennuie pas si je fume? = Do you mind if I smoke?
Ça me plaît que I'm glad that (literally - it pleases me)
chercher ... qui to look for
This is just an example of a 'relative clause' with a negative or doubtful second part. I've included it here because it is quite common. When you have doubts that the person exists or you are using it in the negative, you use the subjunctive:
Je cherche quelqu'un qui puisse parler anglais = I'm looking for someone who can speak English
commander que to order that
comprendre que This uses the subjunctive in certain circumstances. Can you help me with this?
connaître (quelqu'un) ... qui
? or -ve
To know (someone) that
This takes the subjunctive for the same reasons that chercher does - an example of a relative clause with a negative or doubtful second part
conseiller queto advise that
convenirconvenir means 'to agree to'
Je conviens que c'est ... + indicative =  I agree that it's ...
but:
Il convient que + subjunctive = it's advisable that ... (remember you can use past tenses with any of these verbs so you may see 'il conviendrait')
Il convient que il parte tout de suite = It's advisable that he should leave right away
Craindre que...(ne) To be afraid that (non-negative ne is literary)
Croire que
? or -ve
To believe that
possible indicative use e.g.
je ne crois qu'il pleut (fairly sure)
je ne crois qu'il pleuve (less sure)
défendre que To forbid that
demander que to ask that (someone to do something)
déplorer que to deplore that
Désirer que To desire that
Détester que To detest / hate that
Dire que
? or -ve
To say / tell that
+ indicative tense = piece of information
+ subjunctive = command
Dites-lui que je pars = Tell him I'm leaving
I believe that if you use this negatively or in a question, you use the subjunctive too (am I right?)
donner l'ordre que to order that / to give the order that
Douter que
+ve only
To doubt that
This takes the subjunctive only with positive statements (the negative shows certainty e.g. 'I don't doubt you can do it' is like saying that 'I am certain you can do it')
écrire que This uses the subjunctive in certain circumstances. Can you help me with this?
empêcher...ne que to prevent that (someone from doing something)
non-negative ne is literary
espérer que
? or -ve
To hope that
ennuyersee "Ça m'ennuie que"
entendre que This uses the subjunctive in certain circumstances. Can you help me with this?
S'étonner que To be surprised
Être...
To be...
certain que-(? or -ve) certain that (possible indicative use – see croire)
The subjunctive used in questions or negative sentences
content que glad that
désolé que sorry that
convaincu que-(? or -ve)
enchanté que delighted that
étonné que astonished that
fâché que annoyed that
heureux / heureuse que happy that
persuadé que-(? or -ve)
ravi(e) que delighted that
sûr que-(? or -ve) sure that (possibe indicative use – see croire)
The subjunctive used in questions or negative sentences
surpris(e) que surprised that
triste que sad that
éviter...ne que to avoid (non-negative ne is literary)
Évitez qu'il ne parte - Prevent him from leaving.
exiger que to demand that
expliquer que This uses the subjunctive in certain circumstances. Can you help me with this?
Faire que Comment se fait-il que ..? = How is it that ..?
Faire quelque chose par crainte que To do something out of fear that
Il a fait cela par crainte qu'elle ne sache qu'il n'était pas au bureau mercredi = He did this out of fear of her knowing that he wasn’t in the office on Wednesday
garantir que
? or -ve
Il est... / Il n'est pas...
C'est... / Ce n'est pas...
It is... / It isn't...
This is often used in speech instead (with any adjective).Note that Il / elle est... describes a person and C'est describes a situation (as there is no noun):
Il est intelligent = He is intelligent
C'est étonnant = It's surprising
They are generally not interchangable. They have different meaning when you use them with adverbs etc.
à souhaiter que to be hoped that
bizarre que odd that
bon que good that
certain que-(? or -ve) certain that
The subjunctive used in questions or negative sentences
clair que-(? or -ve) clear that
subjunctive with negative statements and questions
Il n'est pas clair que il vienne = It's not clear that he's coming
convenable que proper/fitting that
dommage que pity that
douteux que-(+vr) doubtful that (subjunctive only in positive statements)
essentiel que essential that
étonnant que amazing that
étrange que strange that
évident que-(? or -ve) evident / obvious that
The subjunctive used in questions or negative sentences
exact que-(? or -ve) not correct that
The subjunctive used in questions or negative sentences
faux que false that
guère probable que hardly likely (I'm unsure of the use of n' here)
Il n’est guère probable qu’il ait dit cela = It is hardly likely that he said that
heureux que fortunate that
honteux que shameful that
important que important that
impossible que impossible that
improbable que improbable that
indispensable que indispensable that
inutile que useless that
invraisemblable que unlikely
juste que right / fair that
naturel que natural that
nécessaire necessary that
normal que normal that
peu probable que improbable that (or hardly probable)
probable que-(? or -ve) probable that
The subjunctive used in questions or negative sentences
possible que possible that
préférable que preferable that
question queI think it means there question that or talk that - also:
il a été question de = we / they spoke about
il est question de ... = there's talk of
rare que rare that
regrettable que regrettable that
souhaitable que desirable that
sûr que-(? or -ve) certain that
The subjunctive used in questions or negative sentences
surprenant que surprising that
(grand) temps que (high) time that
triste quesad that
urgent que urgent that
utile que useful that
vrai que-(? or -ve) true that
The subjunctive used in questions or negative sentences but in informal or everyday French, native speakers don't use the subjunctive, especially after est-ce que:
Est-il vrai qu'il soit en vacances demain? =
Est-ce qu’il est vrai qu’il sera en vacances demain? =

Is it true that he will be on holiday tomorrow?
Il faut que One must

Il faut + noun = somebody needs something
Il faut + infinitive = it is necessary to do
Il faut que + subjunctive = it is necessary to do / somebody must do

il faut partir = I / we etc. must leave
il me faut partir = I must leave (sounds formal, use the subjunctive in speech)
il faut que je parte = I must leave
Il me paraît... It seems...
curieux que curious that
incroyable que incredible that
surprenant que surprising that
Il paraît que
possibly ? or -ve
It seems that - I believe if you use this in the negative or a question, you use the subjunctive. Any more information?
but il me paraît que... doesn't usually take the subjunctive
Il se peut que It is possible / It may be that
Il semble que
possibly ? or -ve
It seems that + subjunctive
Il semble que le concert ait été annulé = It seems that the concert has been cancelled (or use Il paraît que le concert a été annulé - no subjunctive)

but 'il me semble' doesn't usually take the subjunctive (Il me semble que le concert a été annulé) although I believe if you use it this way in a negative sentence or a question, you do use it. I'm not entirely sure. Do you know?
il suffit queall that is necessary is to ...
il suffit que vous lui écriviez = all that you need to do is write to her
Il vaut mieux que It's better that
Il vaut mieux que vous restiez chez vous = It's better that you stay at home
imaginer que
? or -ve
interdire que forbid that
le fait que the fact that
This isn't a verb but I wanted to include it here because
Le fait est que ... = The fact is that ...
takes the indicative
mériter queto deserve
il mérite qu'on fasse ... = he deserves people to do ...
Mettons que Let's assume that
ne nier pas...ne que Not to deny that e.g. je ne nie pas que...
I'm not sure about this verb. I've seen a positive sentence using the subjunctive and a negative one in the indicative.
s'opposer que to oppose that
Ordonner que To order that
Penser que
? or -ve
To think that
(possible indicative use – see croire)
permettre que to allow / permit that
se plaindre que This uses the subjunctive in certain circumstances. Can you help me with this?
plairesee "Ça me plaît que" above
Préférer que To prefer that
prétendre queto claim that
I'm not quite sure if I'm 100% correct about the translation or if the subjunctive follows
prétendre promettre que
? or -ve
proposer que to propose that
que Starting a sentence with this triggers the subjunctive:
Qu'il dise la vérité ne fait aucun doute = That he is telling the truth is not in doubt
- also in "third person" commands e.g. tell him to ... etc.
Quelle chance que What luck that (not a verb but I wanted to include it here)
se rappler que
? or -ve
recommander que to recommend that
redouter...ne que to dread that (non-negative ne is literary)
refuser que to refuse that
Regretter que To be sorry that
Se réjouir que To rejoice / be delighted that
Savoir que
? or -ve
to know that
Souhaiter que To wish that
se souvenir que
? or -ve
to remember that
suffirethis means 'to be enough' but see 'il suffit' for a subjunctive use
suggérer que to suggest that
supporter queto bear / tolerate that
elle ne supporte pas qu'on la contredise = she cannot bear being contradicted
supposer que to suppose that (hypothesize)
Supposons que Let's assume that
téléphoner que This uses the subjunctive in certain circumstances. Can you help me with this?
Tenir à ce que To insist that
tolérer queto tolerate that
Trouver que
? or -ve
To think / find that
(possibe indicative use – see croire)
Valoir mieux que Il vaut mieux + infinitive = it's better to do
Il vaut mieux dire quelque chose = it's better to say something
Il vaudrait mieux dire quelque chose = I / we etc. better say something

Il vaut mieux que + subjunctive = it's better to do / that somebody does
Il vaudrait mieux que je ne vienne pas = It would be better if I didn't come
voir que
? or -ve
Vouloir que To wish / want
Je veux qu'il le fasse = I want him to do it
Vouloir dire que
? or -ve
to mean that


Verbs that don't take the subjunctive:
Espérer

These don't usually take the subjunctive:
il est probable que = it is probable that
il me semble
il me paraît = it seems to me

Other words that I haven't researched yet and put in the table:
il y a des chances
il y a peu de chances
peu importe
trouver bizarre
trouver normal / juste



[ENGLISH]Have you found an error or do you want to add more information to these pages?
You can contact me at the bottom of the home page.

[FRANÇAIS]Avez-vous trouvé une erreur?
Vous pouvez m'envoyer un message au bas de la page d'accueil

Home page / la page d'accueil