Nonfinite – à mode impersonnel


Let's Define It!

What's a *nonfinite* verbs?

A nonfinite verb (un verbe à mode impersonnel) is one that does not provide any information about (a) tense, (b) person and (c) number.

A verb will be considered nonfinite because it is basically is stripped of the common attributes of a conjugated verb (mentioned above).

nonfinite verb takes its traits from a nonfinite mood. There are 3 types of nonfinite moods:

  1. infinitive mood
  2. participle mood (past participles agreeing with a direct object can reveal a gender and number)
  3. gerund mood


Let's Pronounce It!

What does it sound like in French?


Let's Have an Example or Two!

Can a little reinforcement do the trick?

Here are some examples of nonfinite verbs that do not indicate the tense, number and person -- they will be underlined below for your convenience

  • Il refuse de quitter les lieux. / He refuses to leave the premises. (infinitive)
  • Nous mangeons en écoutant de la musique. We are eating while listening to music. 
  • Son secret a été devoilé . His secret has been revealed.


Let's Take a Quiz!

What did you learn?