Since In French — How To Use “Depuis” In French

Depuis” (pronounced dəpɥi) in French means “since”. This page will cover how to use “depuis” with several example sentences. The word “il y a” is relate to “depuis” and means “ago.

Guide to have to use depuis in French

How to use depuis

1. On going or continuing events

The word “depuis” is used with the present tense when describing an events that’s been going on for a specified amount of time and continue in the present moment.

When followed by a period of time, depuis indicates the duration of an action and means “has been occurring”. When followed by an event or specified date, depuis indicates since or “has occurred since”.

Suggested Audio Course For All Levels

We have known Camille from Frenchtoday.com for a long time and strongly suggest her audio courses for all levels. She does a great job teaching the "trouble" areas such as pronunciation and verb conjugations. Click here to learn more!

Examples expressing time duration

  • J’apprends le français depuis deux ans. I have been learning French for two years.
  • Il habite au Canada depuis six mois. He has been living in Canada for six months.
  • Je fais régime depuis trois mois. I have been dieting for three months.

Examples expressing event specified date

  • Je suis heureux depuis mon arrivé. I have been happy since I arrived.
  • Elle travaille dans la même société depuis novembre. She has worked in the same company since November.
  • Tu joues au tennis depuis ton cinqième anniversaire. You have played tennis since your third birthday.
  • J’habite dans le même endroit depuis janvier, 2010. I have lived in the same place since January, 2010.
Depuis usage example

Events which haven’t occurred since a specified time

If an event has not occurred since (or for) a certain amount of time, “depuis” used with the passé composé, a commonly used French past tense. What follows “depuis” can be both a duration of time or specific year or date. Here are some examples:

  • Je n’ai pas fumé depuis neuf ans. I haven’t smoked for nine years.
  • Je n’ai pas fumé depuis 2013. I haven’ smoked since 2013.

Related lessons:

Sign Up For A FREE Trial French Lesson On Skype And Get Instant Access To My French Pronunciation Crash Course.

Get the French Pronunciation Crash Course!