FR: (ne pas) croire que + mode

Discussion in 'French and English Grammar / Grammaire française et anglaise' started by Horatio00, Jun 3, 2007.

  1. Horatio00 Junior Member

    England, English
    Bonjour!

    I wasnt't sure if I am correct in using the subjunctive in this sentance:

    ' Je ne crois pas qu’Isaie réagisse dans une manière juste envers son frère Marcellin au fin du roman.'

    merci beaucoup!

    Moderator note: Multiple threads merged to create this one. See also FR: (ne pas) penser que + mode.
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2014
  2. tilt

    tilt Senior Member

    Nord-Isère, France
    French French
    Subjunctive is required, yes, and your sentence is almost perfect.

    Je ne crois pas qu’Isaie réagisse d'une manière juste envers son frère Marcellin à la fin du roman.
     
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2012
  3. I Am Herenow Senior Member

    English
    For example, would you say "Je ne crois pas qu'il y a (des personnes plus hautes que moi)" or "Je ne crois pas qu'il y ait (des personnes plus hautes que moi)"?

    Merci beaucoup! :)
     
  4. Cat' Senior Member

    Français
    tu dois utiliser "qu'il y ait" car "que" est une conjonction de subordination et est donc suivie du subjonctif
     
  5. omahieu Senior Member

    Belgium
    Belgium and French
    Pas exactement. On dit "je crois qu'il y a...", mais "je ne crois pas qu'il y ait..." Il y a pas mal de verbes comme ça avec lesquels on n'emploie le subjonctif que pour la forme négative.
     
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2012
  6. Tabac Senior Member

    Pacific Northwest (USA)
    U. S. - English
    There is more doubt inherent in "je ne crois pas" than in "je crois", and doubt is one of the conditions of using the subjunctive.
     
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2013
  7. DearPrudence

    DearPrudence Dépêche Mod

    IdF
    French (lower Normandy)
  8. omahieu Senior Member

    Belgium
    Belgium and French
    That's the idea. Yet there are some oddities, like 'je ne doute pas qu'ils puissent venir' in which there is less doubt than in 'je crois qu'ils peuvent venir.'

    I'm afraid there is no hard and fast rule.
     
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2013
  9. lilish Junior Member

    tehran
    iran farsi
    Le prof croit que nous aimons la classe. (aimer)

    why in this exercise the answer is not subjunctif?, does not presence of "que" make it subjunctif?
     
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2014
  10. jann

    jann co-mod'

    English - USA
    No, the mere presence of que is not enough to require the subjunctive. :)

    You must also have two different subjects (le prof, nous) --> this is a criteria you meet.

    And most importantly, your principal clause must contain an idea that requires the subjunctive in the subordinate clause (such as doubt, influence, uncertainty, etc see here or here). --> this is a criteria you fail, because croire doesn't require the subjunctive in the positive --> No subjunctive.

    Le prof croit que + indicative
    (because belief is not doubt)

    but

    Le prof ne croit pas que
    + subjunctive
    (because not believing is doubting, and doubt requires the subjunctive)
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2012
  11. agueda Senior Member

    Korean
    Bonjour,
    I learned that after "croire que" comes a verb in the subjunctive tense.
    In the sentence below, I put the verb (red-highlighted) in a subjunctive/imperfect form because the whole sentence was in imperfect. ("croyaient que...")
    But my teacher marked that the tense of " encombrât " is wrong...
    Could someone please explain to me why it's wrong?
    Thanks...

    "Ils croyaient que la religion encombrât le progrès de l’esprit humain."
    ("They believed that the religion encumbers the progress of human mind.")
     
  12. Benoît abroad

    Benoît abroad Senior Member

    East of Belgium
    Français, France
    Good evenig Agueda,

    You used a subjonctive....but a past one (congratulation for the circumflex!).

    Anyway, I personnally wouldn't use the subjonctive but simply the imperfect tense:

    "Ils croyaient que la religion encombrait le progrès..."

    Encombrer is a first group verb. Try a verb of the second or third group:

    "Ils croyaient que la religion remplissait le progrès..." (and not "remplisse" in subjonctive).
     
  13. lilish Junior Member

    tehran
    iran farsi
    Est-ce que tu crois qu'il soit un étudiant modèle?

    How is it possible to know when to use subjunctif with "croire"?
     
  14. le chat noir

    le chat noir Senior Member

    Paris, France
    French (by birth!), some English, a bit of Russian and traces of German
    Ouch, that's a though one. Even native speakers can hesitate in some cases.

    I would say subjunctive is used only when there is the possibility of a doubt about the assertion. For instance you can say "après qu'il ait dormi" if you assume the person should have slept (but cannot be sure of it) or "après qu'il a dormi" if you are giving a factual account, or talking about something that can only happen after someone has slept.

    The example you take is really on the edge. It might be said, but still sounds strange, because it looks like the locutor is questionning what his interlocutor says, or dismissing his opinion in advance: "I ask you whether you are sure of something, but I (since I use the subjunctive) doubt it". That example is something more likely to be said during an argument than a casual conversation.
     
  15. ntquartex New Member

    Turkish
    If it's used in negative / interrogatif(question) form you must use subjonctif.
    But if it is positive you must use indicative for the verbs : croire,penser,etre sur que,etre possible que...
     
  16. capricorne79 Junior Member

    Skopje, Macedonia
    macedonian
    What happens when croire is used with le futur proche?
    Je crois qu'il pleut,
    Je crois qu'il va pleuvoir , mais
    Je ne crois pas qu'il aille pleuvoir?
     
  17. marget Senior Member

    If using the subjunctive, I think you should say Je ne crois pas qu'il pleuve. Aller + infinitive is not used to express the near future in the subjunctive mood.
     
  18. Flore!

    Flore! Senior Member

    France
    French
    So you have to say: Je ne crois pas qu'il va pleuvoir.
     
  19. capricorne79 Junior Member

    Skopje, Macedonia
    macedonian
    Thank you for the answers!
    What about le passé composé?
    Je crois qu'il a plu
    Je ne crois pas qu'il ait plu?
    Merci d'avance!
     
  20. quinoa Senior Member

    french
    A l'interrogatif on peut trouver l'indicatif ou le subjonctif :

    Croyez-vous qu'il vienne?
    Croyez-vous qu'il viendra?
     
  21. itka Senior Member

    France
    français
    Je crois qu'il pleuvra
    Je ne crois pas qu'il pleuve

    J'aurais cru qu'il pleuvrait
    Je n'aurais pas cru qu'il pleuve
     
  22. quinoa Senior Member

    french
    Il est possible de dire : Je n'aurais pa cru qu'il pleuvrait.
    Et même Je n'aurais pas cru qu'il aurait plu.
     
  23. rowen New Member

    American English
    Can you say; Je ne crois pas que je fasse rien. or Would it be preferable to say:
    Je ne crois pas que je ferais rien. to say I don't believe I would do anything.
     
  24. lefrancophile Senior Member

    English - Canadian
    "Je ne ferais rien, je dirais" OR "je ne ferais rien, je crois" is what I would say in French for this situation.
     
  25. itka Senior Member

    France
    français
    Je crois que je ne ferai rien.
    (= je ne crois pas que je ferai quelque chose)

    "rien" is the second part of the negation.
     
  26. Swordskid Senior Member

    Spain Spanish
    I would like to know what tense to use after this structure:

    "Je ne croyais pas que ce soit / que c'était nécessaire."

    Thanks in advance.
     
  27. quinoa Senior Member

    french
    A la forme négative et interrogative, "croire que" peut être suivi de l'indicatif, du subjonctif ou du conditionnel.
    Je ne crois pas que nous réussirons.
    Je ne crois pas que nous réussissions. (le subjonctif renforce la nuance de doute)
    Je ne crois pas qu'il pourrait faire mieux.
    Avec votre exemple:
    - au présent :
    Je ne crois que c'est nécessaire. / que ce sera nécessaire.
    Je ne crois pas que ce soit nécessaire.
    Pas de possibilité avec le conditionnel ici.
    - au passé :
    Je ne croyais pas que c'était nécessaire.
    Je ne croyais pas que ce serait nécessaire.
    Je croyais pas que ce soit nécessaire (pour les puristes "que ce fût nécessaire")
     
  28. LaChuna New Member

    Germany
    German
    So in conclusion, it is best to not use the subjunctif after verbs like croire que if the verb is not in present?!
     
  29. quinoa Senior Member

    french
    Croire que, in the affirmative form, can be followed by indicative or conditional.
    Je crois que nous réussirons.
    Je crois qu'il pourrait mieux faire.
    Je croyais que vous viendriez.

    In the negative and interrogative ones, read again previous message.
     
  30. rockcracker Senior Member

    Chinese
    How about "Je ne crois pas que je .....".
    Is it the same as "Je ne crois pas qu'il ...." using subjunctive mood?
     
  31. Maître Capello

    Maître Capello Mod et ratures

    Suisse romande
    French – Switzerland
    Yes, the subject of the subordinate clause plays no role in the choice of the mood.

    Je ne crois pas que je puisse…
    Je ne crois pas qu'il puisse…
     
  32. jann

    jann co-mod'

    English - USA
    But if the subject is the same in both clauses, wouldn't you be more likely to use an infinitive construction here?

    Je ne crois pas que je puisse --> je ne crois pas pouvoir
     
  33. tilt

    tilt Senior Member

    Nord-Isère, France
    French French
    Yes, definitely. :)
     
  34. rockcracker Senior Member

    Chinese
    Do you really prefer " ne pas pouvoir" to " ne pas que "?
    I am quite influenced by the English way "I don't think I can ...." et donc "je ne crois pas pouvoir" me parait un peu bizarre!
     
  35. Maître Capello

    Maître Capello Mod et ratures

    Suisse romande
    French – Switzerland
    Actually, Je ne crois pas que je puisse and Je ne crois pas pouvoir are both fine, but I prefer the former. :rolleyes::p (Note: I'm only talking about ne pas croire specifically. With some other verbs you have no choice but use an infinitive clause.) Besides, the infinitive lacks the subtleties the future and present subjunctive convey.

    Present action/event:
    Je ne crois pas que je peux t'aider. (present) ← natural, but the indicative makes it sound a bit blunt
    Je ne crois pas que je puisse t'aider. (present subj.) ← most natural way to put it, the subjunctive making it sound as a polite, sorrowful statement
    Je ne crois pas pouvoir t'aider. (infinitive) ← least natural phrasing, more or less equivalent to the first in meaning, although not as blunt since the infinitive is always neutral (no implied emotion)

    Future action/event:
    Je ne crois pas que je pourrai venir demain. (future) ← most natural way to put it, relatively high likelihood of not going
    Je ne crois pas que je peux venir demain. (present) ← same as above, but colloquial
    Je ne crois pas que je puisse venir demain. (present subj.) ← also natural, but with a higher degree of uncertainty
    Je ne crois pas pouvoir venir demain. (infinitive) ← least natural phrasing, equivalent to the first in meaning
     
  36. rumpus New Member

    london
    english -london
    So you CAN say je ne crois pas qu'il est intelligent if you are really convinced he isn't and wish to imply you have no doubt in you mind??????
     
  37. dangph

    dangph Senior Member

    English - Australia
    Suppose someone asked you, "Was he walking or running?" and you wanted to respond, "I don't think he was running."

    My attempt at the response in French is, Je ne crois pas qu'il courait. However, as I understand it, ne pas croire que requires the subjunctive. I could use the imparfait du subjonctif here, but I'm told that it is a little-used, literary form, so now I am not sure what to do. Do I just leave it in the plain imparfait​?
     
  38. rzl62 Junior Member

    English - American
    I'm not certain, but I think since the imperfect subjunctive is literary, the present subjunctive is used instead colloquially. So:

    Je ne crois pas qu'il coure.

    See page 82 of Christopher Kendris's French Grammar as an example of a source saying the present subjunctive is typically used in place of the imperfect subjunctive. But I would get confirmation from a native speaker on that.
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2013
  39. Oddmania

    Oddmania Senior Member

    France
    French
    Hi,

    This is a tricky issue for foreign speakers, but yes, basically keep the Imparfait :thumbsup: The subjunctive is used about either Present or near-future events.

    Il a une jambe cassée, je ne crois pas qu'il puisse courir (Présent, or possibly Future).
    Il est malade, je ne crois pas qu'il vienne à ma fête ce soir (near-Future).

    Here, you're talking about a past event, and you're answering a question at that, so you're all the more likely to use the same tense as in the question (the Imparfait). Hope it makes sense!
     
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2013
  40. jr364574 Senior Member

    English - American
    Hi everyone,

    […]

    Additionally, I was wondering why a French person used the subjunctive in this sentence yesterday: "J'ai fait ça pour que tu crois que je dorme" Why wouldn't it be just the indicative since it's croire in a positive sense? I asked if I could have said "dors" and the person said no. Thanks! :)
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2015
  41. Oddmania

    Oddmania Senior Member

    France
    French
    Hi,

    […]

    I wouldn't use the subjunctive after ...pour que tu croies que... either. You may hear it (and as it turns out, you did), but the standard way to put it is with the indicative mood.

    J'ai fait ça pour que tu croies qu'il fait beau / que je suis parti / que je dors.
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2015
  42. tilt

    tilt Senior Member

    Nord-Isère, France
    French French
    Hello, jr364574.

    […]

    As for J'ai fait ça pour que tu crois que je dorme, it does sound odd to me, I wouldn't say it.
    Are you sure the person didn't say:
    J'ai fait ça pour que tu croies (subjunctive!) que je dormais (indicative imperfect)?
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2015
  43. le chat noir

    le chat noir Senior Member

    Paris, France
    French (by birth!), some English, a bit of Russian and traces of German
    Basically the subjunctive is used when the action discussed is not guaranteed to happen.
    Though some verbs like "espérer" imply an unknow outcome, some others may require indicative or subjunctive depending on the meaning intended.

    In your example, it is not know whether the person will believe you're sleeping, so subjunctive should be used.
    Besides, "dormir" should use the indicative (you wanted the person to believe for a fact that you were sleeping ).

    "J'ai fait ça pour que tu croies que je dormais"
     

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