Today we are going to practise how to express a hypothesis in French using si, to say for example, “if you come, I’ll make a cake”.
There are three possible formulas we can follow:
- si + present tense, followed by present tense
- si + present tense, followed by future tense
- si + present tense, followed by imperative (command form)
These formulas are used to express an action which will come true in the present or future as a result of something else happening. Let’s look at some examples:
- si tu viens, je fais un gâteau – if you are coming, I am making a cake
- si tu viens, on regardera un film – if you come, we will watch a film
- si tu viens, préviens-moi – if you’re coming, let me know
Of course, it is also possible to invert the structure:
- je fais un gâteau si tu viens
- dis-le-lui si tu l’aimes
- le professeur ne sera pas content si tu ne le fais pas
The important thing to remember is that in this context si needs to be followed by a verb in the present tense. Now that you have seen some examples, try to build your own example sentences to practise this construction. Allez!