French Language French Grammar: How to use falloir

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How to use « falloir » in French


Definitions[edit | edit source]

impersonal form[edit | edit source]

A sentence is in the impersonal form if:

  1. The subject is the word "il".
  2. The subject represents nothing and no one.

The indirect object complement[edit | edit source]

The indirect object complement (French: le complément d'objet indirect, COI) indirectly completes the verb most often through a preposition. The verb used with an COI is an indirect transitive verb.

To find the COI of the verb, it is most enough to ask questions:

  • à qui ? à quoi ?
to whom? to what?
  • de qui ? de quoi ?
of who? of what?

Falloir[edit | edit source]

Rule[edit | edit source]

The French verb “falloir” only exists in its impersonal form.

The verb "falloir" can be followed by:

  • a noun,
  • an infinitive,
  • a clause (with the verb in the subjunctive)

and it can be preceded by a pronoun acting as an indirect object.

Examples[edit | edit source]

Look at the following examples:

French Translation
Il faut rester We must stay
Il faut du monde It takes people
Il nous faut réfléchir We have to think
Il faut que nous marchions We have to walk
Il aura fallu trois semaines pour que vous vous décidiez It took three weeks for you to make up your mind
Il nous faudra revenir dans 2 semaines  We must come back in 2 weeks
Il faudrait être certain que les cambrioleurs soient sortis de la maison We should be sure that the burglars are out of the house

Videos[edit | edit source]

verb FALLOIR (to be necessary/to need)[edit | edit source]

French verbs conjugated by Learn French With Alexa

Falloir versus Devoir[edit | edit source]

2 French verbs with a similar meaning but different constructions: falloir vs devoir in French.

Other Chapters[edit | edit source]

Other Chapters[edit source]

Table of Contents

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