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Parler Conjugation: How To Conjugate “To Speak” In French

Parler Conjugation: How To Conjugate “To Speak” In French

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Parler (to speak, to talk) is almost always the first verb that students learn. It’s classified as a regular ER verb. This means that its endings are the exact same as all other “regular” verbs that end in -er in the infinitive form. On this post you’ll learn the conjugations for parler in nine major verb tenses with an example sentence for each form.

The conjugation of parler in the present tense is: je parle (I speak), tu parles (you speak), il/elle/on parle (he/she speaks), nous parlons (we speak), vous parlez (you speak, formal and plural) and ils/elles parlent (they speak).

Parler conjugation in French

Example sentences with parler

Before we look at the conjugations, here are some example sentences using parler

Je parle français.

I speak French.

Marie parle à son fils.

Marie speaks to her son.

Jacques parle avec son patron.

Jacques is speaking with his boss.

Marc et Sylvie parlent de leur nouvelle maison.

Marc and Sylvie are talking about their new home.

Parler conjugation in French

Before we go any further, let’s take a look at the verb conjugation charts of parler. Further down the page we’ve presented conjugation tables with example sentences.

Parler conjugation chart

Parler conjugation tables with example sentences

In the following section we’ll look at conjugation of parler in six major French verb tenses. This page on our site provides a useful explanation of six verb tenses that are necessary to speak fluently.

Present tense

In the present tense, je parle translates to both “I speak” and “I am speaking”.

Je parleI speakJe parle français.I speak French.
Tu parlesYou speak (familiar singular)Tu parles bien. You speak well.
Il/elle parleHe/she speaksElle parle espagnol.She speaks Spanish.
Nous parlonsWe speakNous parlons de Pierre. We're talking about Pierre.
Vous parlezYou speak (formal, plural)Vous parlez trop fort.You're speaking too loudly.
Ils/elles parlentThey speakIls parlent ensemble.They're speaking together.

The following YouTube video by Alexa does a great job teaching the pronunciation of parler when conjugated in the present tense.

Passé composé

The second tense we’ll look at is the passé composé, a commonly used French past tense. This page on our site covers the passé composé in detail.

J'ai parléI spokeJ'ai parlé à Pierre. I spoke to Pierre.
Tu as parléYou spoke (informal singular)Tu as parlé au téléphone.You spoke on the phone.
Il/elle a parléHe/she spokeIl a parlé à sa mère. He spoke to his mother.
Nous avons parléWe spokeNous avons parlé hier. We spoke yesterday.
Vous avez parléYou spoke (formal, plural)Vous avez parlé au patron.You spoke to the boss.
Ils/elles ont parléThey spokeIls ont parlé aux enfants.They spoke to the kids.

Passé simplé

The passé simplé is a past tense that appears mainly in literature. It is grammatically equivalent to the passé composé.

Je parlai
I spokeJe parlai au téléphone avec ton père.I spoke on the phone with your father.
Tu parlasYou spoke (informal, singular)Tu parlas beaucoup mais tu ne rien dis.You spoke a lot but didn't say anything.
Il, elle parlaHe, she spokeElle para à son fils cinq fois. She spoke to her son five times.
Nous parlâmesWe spokeNous parlâmes ensemble au restaurant.We spoke together at the restaurant.
Vous parlâtesYou spoke (formal, singular)Vous parlâtes avec toute la famille.You spoke with the entire family.
Ils, elles parlèrentThey spokeIls ne parlèrent pas du sujet.They didn't speak about the subject.

Imperfect tense

The imperfect tense, or imparfait is another commonly used French past these. Je parlais can translate to “I was speaking”, “I used to speak” and “I spoke”. This page on our site covers the imperfect tense in detail.

Je parlaisI used to speak Je parlais à Martin quand tu es arrivé. I was speaking to Martin when you arrived.
Tu parlaisYou used to speakTu parlais allemand quand tu étais un enfant.You used to speak German when you were a child.
Il/elle parlaitHe/she used to speakElle parlait français pendant son enfance.She used to speak French during her childhood.
Nous parlionsWe used to speakNous parlions de vous quand vous avez téléphoné.We were talking about you when you called.
Vous parliezYou used to speakVous parliez couramment avant.You used to speak fluently.
Ils/elles parlaientThey used to speakAvant ils se parlaient tout le temps.They used to speak to each other all the time.

Future tense

The following table is of parler conjugated in the futur simple tense. This page on our site covers the two main French future tenses.

Je parleraiI will speakUn jour, je parlerai couramment.I will speak fluently some day.
Tu parlerasYou will speak (singular informal)Un jour, tu parleras le japonais.Someday you will speak Japanese.
Il/elle parlera He/she will speakIl parlera avec sa femme. He will speak with his wife.
Nous parleronsWe will speakNous parlerons au patron. We will speak to the boss.
Vous parlerezYou will speak (formal, plural)Vous parlerez du projet.You will speak about the project.
Ils/elles parlerontThey will speakIls parleront après le cours.They will speak after the class.

Futur proche

The futur proche, or the near future tense, equates to “going to” in English. It is formed by combining the present tense of aller (to go) with the infinitive. Je vais parler translates to “I am going to speak”.

Je vais parlerI am going to speakJe vais paler à ton frère.I'm going to speak to your brother.
Tu vas parlerYou are going to speak (familiar, singular)Tu vas parler de ton voyage.You're going to talk about your trip.
Il, elle va parlerHe, she is going to speakElle va parler à ses enfants.She's going to speak to her kids.
Nous allons parlerWe are going to speakNous allons parler du nouveau projet. We're going to talk about the new project.
Vous allez parler You are going to speak (formal, plural)Vous allez parler très couramment un jour.You are going to speak very fluently some day.
Ils, elles vont parlerThey are going to speakIls vont parler des nouvelles solutions.They're going to talk about the new solutions.

Conditional tense

The conditional tense is the “would tense”. Hence, je parlerais means “I would speak”. This page on our site covers the conditional tense in detail.

Je parleraisI would speakJe parlerais à Jean si j'avais le temps.I would speak to Jean if I had the time.
Tu parleraisYou would speak (singular, informal)Tu parlerais le français si tu étudiais un peu.You would speak French if you studied a bit.
Il/elle parleraitHe/she would speakIl parlerait le chinois s'il habitait en Chine.He would speak Chinese if he lived in China.
Nous parlerionsWe would speakNous parlerions ensemble mais ce n'est pas possible.We would speak together but it's no possible.
Vous parleriezYou would speak (formal, plural)Vous parleriez l'espsgnol si vous habitez au Mexique.You would speak Spanish if you lived in Mexico.
Ils/elles parleraientThey would speakIls se parleraient plus souvent mais ils n'ont pas le temps.They would speak to each other more often but they don't have the time.

Subjunctive mood

The following table shows the conjugations for parler in the subjunctive mood, which is a tense that’s often used for expressing wishes, emotions and doubts.

que je parlethat I speakIl faut que je parle français en France. I have to speak French in France.
que tu parlesthat you speak (singular, informal)Je veux que tu parles plus fort.I want to to speak louder.
qu'il/elle parlethat he/she speaksJe doute qu'elle parle le chinois. I doubt she speaks Chinese.
que nous parlionsthat we speakIl faut que nous parlions demain.We need to speak tomorrow.
que vous parliezthat you speak (plural, formal)Je suis heureux que vous parliez ensemble.I am happy you are speaking together.
qu'ils/elles parlentthat they speakJe suis ravi qu'ils parlent le japonais.I'm delighted they speak Japanese.

Imperative mood

The imperative mood is used for giving commands. Parle! translates to “speak!”.

Parle!Speak! (informal, singular)Parle plus fort!Speak louder!
Parlons!Let's speak!Parlons français! Let's speak French!
Parlez! Speak! (formal, plural)Parlez moins fort!Speak softer!

Suggested resource:

One of the most daunting areas that all beginners face is figuring out the right approach to learning French verb conjugations. I have been working with Camille from since 2016 and strongly suggest looking at her post entitled The Secret To Mastering French Verb Conjugation.

Discover more conjugation charts with example sentences:

Parler conjugation in the present tense.

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David Issokson

David Issokson is a lifelong language enthusiast. His head is swimming with words and sounds as he speaks over six languages. Of all the languages he speaks, he's the most passionate about French! David has helped hundreds of students to improve their French in his private online lessons. When procrastinating working on his site,, David enjoys his time skiing and hiking in Teton Valley, Idaho.

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