French Language Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for students, teachers, and linguists wanting to discuss the finer points of the French language. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

When do we use this formula: si + imparfait ?

What are the applications of it ?

Si on sortait ensemble ce soir ?

What's about the question form?

share|improve this question
up vote 5 down vote accepted

Je vois deux utilisations au « si + imparfait »:

  • Pour exprimer un souhait ou un regret, proposer une idée:

    Si on sortait ensemble ce soir ?
    What about going out together tonight?
    What if we went out together tonight?

    Si seulement j'avais écouté ma mère !
    If only I had listen to my mom!

    Dans ce cas, le if n'est pas tout le temps utilisé pour la traduction anglaise.

  • Pour exprimer une condition:

    Si je pouvais, je viendrais t'aider à finir tes devoirs.
    If I could, I would help you finish your homework.

share|improve this answer

Dans ce cas l'emploi de si + imparfait dans une phrase se terminant par un point d'interrogation indique une suggestion/une propostion.

This sentence :
si + imparfait + question mark at the end of the sentence
implies a suggestion or a propostion.

It is the equivalent of :
What about (how about) going out tonight?

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.