The interrogative form in French

La forme interrogative en Français

In French there are three ways of asking questions. You can do an inversion of the subject and the
verb, use the est-ce que form, or simply use the affi rmative form with an upward intonation. Let’s
start with the inversion:
Comprenez-vous la question?
Do you understand the question?
Parlez-vous espagnol?
Do you speak Spanish?

If the third-person singular of a verb ends with a vowel, a -t- is inserted to facilitate the
Parle-t-elle russe?
Does she speak Russian?
Voyage-t-il souvent en Europe?
Does he oft en travel to Europe?

A more colloquial way of asking a question is to use the est-ce que form in front of the
subject _ verb.
Est-ce que vous habitez à New York?
Do you live in New York?
Est-ce que tu sors ce soir?
Are you going out tonight?

Est-ce que becomes est-ce qu’ before a vowel.
Est-ce que vous courez dans le parc?
Do you run in the park?
Est-ce qu’ils vendent des timbres?
Do they sell stamps?

A third way of asking a question, colloquially, is keeping the order subject _ verb and speaking
with an upward intonation.
Tu fi nis à cinq heures?
You’re finishing at five o’clock?

Vous investissez en Asie?
You’re investing in Asia?