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Using Venir de to Express Having 'Just Did Something'

Je viens d'apprendre un peu français aujourd'hui!

Using Venir de to Express Having 'Just Did Something'

Published by The LingoNomad

Featured article photo: Moulin Rouge in Paris, France by Martjin Adegeest (CC0 Licensed)

Before going through the FrenchPod101 lesson (Level 2, Lesson 21), I had no idea that we could actually use venir de to express the idea of someone having just done something.

From what I knew, I could simply use juste 'just' to say something like, J'ai juste mangé 'I just ate', which also works, for sure, but using venir de is another way of expressing a similar idea.

Step 1: Conjugate venir

When using venir, you'd want to use the correct conjugations. Let's review the present simple conjugations for venir:

  • Je viens
  • Tu viens
  • Il/Elle/On vient
  • Nous venons
  • Vous venez
  • Ils/Elles viennent

Step 2: Add de

Remember to add de! Otherwise, you would just be saying someone is 'coming to do something' instead of having 'just did something'. For example:

  • Je viens étudier dans la bibliothèque.
    come to study in the library.
  • Je viens d'étudier dans la bibliothèque.
    I just studied in the library.

So if you want to convey the meaning of having just done something, remember to add de after the conjugation of venir.

Step 3: Add a verb à l'infinitif

Now, the easy part is to just stick a verb à l'infinitif after de. The great thing is you don't have to conjugate it at all! For example:

  • Elle vient de dire...
    'She just said...'
  • Nous venons d'apprendre...
    'We just learned...'

Note how dire 'to say' and 'apprendre' 'to learn' are not conjugated.

That's it! 

Of course, you should embellish your sentences coherently, but you should now have the basic idea on how to express someone having just done something using venir de.

  • Elle vient de dire qu'elle ne comprenait pas la question.
    'She just said that she did not understand the question.'
  • Nous venons d'apprendre qu'il n'ya pas des examens aujourd'hui.
    'We just learned that there will be no exams today.'

Want More Practice in French?

Check out FrenchPod101, a website where you can learn French guided by native speakers through audio lessons. You can start learning anywhere from Beginner, Upper Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced levels to practice on listening, vocabulary lists, and grammar pointers to fast track your goal in becoming a pro in French!

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