Spanish imperative mood

In English, one can say “Do it!” or “Don’t do it!” In Spanish, one can say so too. The imperative mood is used to give commands, orders, instructions etc. The imperative mood exists for these pronouns only: Tú, Usted, Nosotoros, Vosotros, and Ustedes. And it has different affirmative and negative forms.

Let’s conjugate an –AR verb in the Imperative mood.

Esperar – to wait for, to hope;

 AffirmativeNegative
(Tú)esperano esperes
(Usted)espereno espere
(Nosotros)esperemosno esperemos
(Vosotros)esperadno esperéis
(Ustedes)esperenno esperen

And one –ER verb. –IR and –ER verbs are conjugated the same in the imperative mood.

Comprender to understand

 AffirmativeNegative
(Tú)comprendeno comprendas
(Usted)comprendasno comprenda
(Nosotros)comprendamosno comprendamos
(Vosotros)comprendedno comprendáis
(Ustedes)comprendanno comprendan

Imperative mood can be used:

For reflexive verbs, one must add an appropriate reflexive pronoun.

Levantarse – to get up:

 AffirmativeNegative
(Tú)levantateno te levantes
(Usted)levantateno se levante
(Nosotros)levantémonosno nos levantemos
(Vosotros)levantaosno os levantéis
(Ustedes)levántenseno se levanten

Also, the indirect or direct pronouns are added after ending in the affirmative form, but not in the negative:

Comprendelo – find it (command Tú)

No lo comprendas – don’t understand it

Esperadme por favor – wait me please (command Vosotros)

No me esperad por favor – don’t wait me please

¡Despiertame temprano por la mañana! – Wake me up early in the morning!

¡No me despiertes temprano! – Don’t wake me up early!

Also, there are irregular verbs too. First of all, we have to consider SER and IR, because they are the most irregular two:

Ser – to be

 AffirmativeNegative
(Tú)no seas
(Usted)seano sea
(Nosotros)seamosno seamos
(Vosotros)sedno seáis
(Ustedes)seansean

Ir – to go

 AffirmativeNegative
(Tú)veno vayas
(Usted)vayano vaya
(Nosotros)vamos*, vayamosno vayamos
(Vosotros)idno vayáis
(Ustedes)vayanno vayan

*-VAMOS is equivalent of English “Let’s” or “Let’s go”.

Rules for other irregular verbs:

The affirmative form of VOSOTROS is always regular for all verbs.

Irregular affirmative commands TÚ of these verbs should just be memorized:

Decir – (Tú) di

Salir – (Tú) sal

Hacer –(Tú) haz

Poner – (Tú) pon

Tener – (Tú) ten

Venir – (Tú) ven

For verbs that have a change in stem in present tense, for example:

Encontrar – to find, Yo encuentro – I find, stem ENCUENTR-, the imperative form will have this change too, apart from Nosotros and Vosotros commands:

 AffirmativeNegative
(Tú)encuentrano encuentres
(Usted)encuentreno encuentre
(Nosotros)encontremosno encontremos
(Vosotros)encontradno encontréis
(Ustedes)encuentrenno encuentren

And for the verbs that end in –GO or –ZCO at conjugation with YO in present tense, for example:

Salir – to leave, Yo salgo – I leave, stem SALG-

Parecer – to look, Yo parezco – I look, stem PAREZC-

the affirmative commands USTED, NOSOTROS, USTEDES, and all negative commands will have this stem.

 AffirmativeNegative
(Tú)conoceconozcas
(Usted)conozcaconozca
(Nosotros)conozcamosconozcamos
(Vosotros)conocedconozcáis
(Ustedes)conozcanconozcan

Conjugate these regular verbs in imperative mood and build sentences with them:

Quedar – to stay/to remain

Llevar – to carry/to bring

Mirar – to watch/to look at

Recibir – to receive

Existir – to exist

Considerar – to consider

Entrar – to enter

Presentar – to present

Crear – to create

Levantarse – to get up

Permitir – to permit

Irse – to leave

And these irregular ones:

With stem changeWith –go/zco
Dormir – to sleep,
Jugar – to play,
Entender – to understand,
Pensar – to think,
Cerrar – to close
Parecer – to look like,
Aparecer – appear,
Oír – to hear,
Desaparecer – to disappear.

Examples:

¡No te vayas! – don’t leave!

¡Escúchame! – Listen me!

Llevenlo (ustedes) aquí por favor, tengo que comprobarlo – Bring it here please, I have to check it

Haz esta tarea en mí lugar – do this task instead of me

¡No parece una idiota! – don’t look like an idiot!

¡Vota por ese candidato en las elecciones! – vote for this candidate in the elections!

¡Vamos a bailar! – let’s dance!

¡Vayamos a la fiesta! – let’s go to the party?

Para comprenderlo, lee este libro – In order to understand it, read that book

¡Haz algo para mí! – do something for me!

Hablad con ellos, quizás dirán que nececitáis – speak with them, maybe they will say what you need

¡Calmate y disfruta! – Calm yourself and enjoy!

Build sentences with these words:

El sofá – sofa

la silla – chair

la bañera – bath

el padre – father

hombre – man

el tiempo – time

el banco – bank

la hija – daughter

el hijo – son

el primo – cousin

la mujer – woman/wife
la moneda – coin/currency
la cuenta – account

la tarjeta de crédito – credit card

Exercises

Conjugate verbs in imperative mood

  1. ¡_______________ a las ocho! (LEVANTARSE – to get up, command TÚ) – Get up at eight o’clock!
  2. ¡No _______________ la puerta por favor! (CERRAR – to close, command USTED) – Don’t close the door please!
  3. ¡No                          hoy! (IRSE – to leave, command USTEDES) – Don’t leave today!
  4. ¡_______________ con nosotros! (JUGAR – to play, command VOSOTROS) – Play with us!
  5. ¡_______________ a la fiesta! (IR – to go, command NOSOTROS) – Let’s go to the party!
  6. ¡No_______________ nada! (DECIR – to say, command TÚ) – Don’t say anything!
  7. ¿_______________ algunos amigos? (LLAMAR – to call, command NOSOTROS) – Let’s call some friends?
  8. Tengo una solicitud para ti, _______________ hoy por favor (AYUDAR – to help, command TÚ) – I have a request for you, help her please today
  9. ¡Niños,_______________ a la casa por el almuerzo! (CORRER – to run, command VOSOTROS) – Kids, run home for lunch!
  10. ¡_______________ el teléfono! (CARGAR – to charge, command USTED) – Charge the phone!
  11. ¡_______________ esto! (DAR – to give, command TÚ) – Give me this!
  12. ¡No ______________ ese movimiento! (SIGUIR – to follow, command VOSOTROS) – Don’t follow this movement!
  13. ¡_______________ por ella (HACER – to do, command TÚ) – Do it for her!
  14. ¡No __________________ tarde! (LEVANTARSE – to get up) – Don’t get up late!
  15. _______________________ su estatura Usted por favor (MEDIR* – to measure, *- stem MÍD-) – Measure your stature please

Answers

1: levántate, 2: cierre, 3: se vayan, 4: jugad, 5: vamos, 6: digas,

7: llamamos, 8: ayúdale, 9: corred, 10: carga, 11: dame, 12: siguéis, 13: hazlo, 14: te levantes, 15: míde

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