Si” is a small French indigenous of countless meanings.

You are watching: What does si mean in french

French civilization use that a lot, for completely unrelated sentences. It can be easy to feeling confused!How have the right to you use the word “Si” in French? and also what walk it really mean?What rules does the follow, and also in i m sorry sentences deserve to it chop up?Let’s dive in v these explanations and examples!

Learning goals: This is what you’ll be able to do ~ watching this lesson

Beginner: usage “Si” come say “Yes”Intermediate: usage “Si” come say “If”Advanced: use “Si” to say “So much”

Bonjour i’m Géraldine, your French teacher.Welcome come Comme une Française.I’m below to help you get much better at speaking + understanding everyday French — anytime, anywhere.


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1) “Si” = If


In many sentences, Si way “If.”

We usage it in sentence made of 2 parts. Those two parts most frequently are:

A part that starts with Si + le présent + a part with le présent Si je gagne, j’achète une voiture. (= If ns win, I’ll buy a car.)A component that starts through Si + le présent + a part with le futur→ Si tu viens, tu seras tout seul. (= If you come, you’ll be every alone.)A component that starts v Si + l’imparfait + a component with le conditionnel→ Si j’étais riche, j’achèterais une nouvelle voiture. (= If i were rich, I’d to buy a new car.)

(Or “Si + le passé composé” + a part with passé composé or présent or futur.)

You can uncover the entirety conjugation the le conditionnel présent here.

We use le conditionnel in a sentence with “Si”, or ~ above its very own for politeness (to soften an affirmation) – similar to in English!

For example:Si j’étais là, je serais heureux.= If ns were there, I’d it is in happy.

Je voudrais une baguette, s’il vous plaît.= I’d prefer a “baguette”, please.

→ You can learn an ext tenses and also conjugations, v step-by-step quizzes to test you yourself and assist you learn, with my special regimen “Test her Conjugation”.


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Le conditionnel is NOT just used ~ Si, but in the other component of the sentence as well. As the French college kids’ mnemonic goes: “Les “Si” n’aiment pas les “-rais.”” (= “Si” doesn’t prefer “-rais”, the endings for the conditional)

It’s additionally a cute wrong by a boy character in the renowned French movie la Guerre des Boutons : “Si j’aurais su, j’aurais pas venu.” This catchphrase must be “Si j’avais su, je ne serais pas venu.” (= If I’d known, ns wouldn’t have come), but the kid is young and also innocent for this reason he messes increase French grammar.

Check the end my recommendations for more old French comedies here!

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You have the right to use Si (= “If”) in many everyday expressions or transforms of phrases that you’ll uncover in English together well. For example:

Même si (= even if)Je viendrai même si je suis malade. (= i’ll come even if i’m sick.)Si seulement (= If only)Si seulement je pouvais ! (= If only I could!)Comme si (= together if)Comme si c’était une surprise ! (= as if it were a surprise!)

We additionally use “Si” in the contracted form (when it comes prior to the collection i) in the expression s’il car plaît / s’il vous plaît (= please) !

Discover an ext ways come say give thanks to you in FrenchLearn an ext common, polite French greetings


In French, we use Oui to say “yes,” most of the time. For example:“Tu as faim ?” “Oui !” (= “Are you hungry?” “Yes i am!”)

We don’t include a verb ~ “Oui” … which have the right to be confusing after a an adverse question.

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For example, take it the question: “Tu n’as pas faim ?” (= Aren’t you hungry?)

If girlfriend answer “Oui”, carry out you mean “Yes, i’m hungry,” or “You’re right, I’m not hungry” ? If you usage “Non”, does it average “No, I’m no hungry” or “No, you wrong, I’m no hungry” ? It’s not a huge problem, but it have the right to make for blurry conversations.

French language resolves that ambiguity by using one more word to average “yes” ~ a an unfavorable question: Si !

For example:

“Tu n’as pas faim ?” “Si !” (= “Aren’t friend hungry?” “, Yes, ns am hungry.”)

It’s additionally used to refuse a an adverse affirmation!

“Tu n’es pas allé à l’école aujourd’hui.” “Si !”(= “You didn’t go to institution today.” “Yes, ns did!”)

→ can you think the other instances of inquiries where you deserve to answer “Si !” in French? create them in the comment below!