Chapter 5

Formal Commands

In Spanish,speakers use formal,(usted or ustedes), commands when addressing people to:

A table that displays three subject pronouns, three endings for the subject pronoun, and the proper replacements for those endings when using formal commands, both affirmative and negative.
Subject Pronoun -ar -er -ir
usted e a a
nosotros emos amos amos
ustedes en an an
  • ask them to do something, and to give advice. Do not forget to add please.
  • Formal commands, both affirmative and negative, have the same forms as the third person singular.

 

A table that displays singular examples of formal commands, and the appropriate verb ending replacement.
SINGULAR
Hablar
Por favor, (no) hable más despacio.
Please, (do not) speak slower.
Comer
Por favor, (no) coma la empanada.
Please, (do not) eat the turnover.
Escribir 
Por favor, (no) escriba en español.
Please, (do not) write in Spanish.
A table that displays plural examples of formal commands, and the appropriate verb ending replacement.
PLURAL
Hablar
Por favor, (no) hablen más despacio.
Please, (do not) speak slower.
Comer
Por favor, (no) coman la empanada.
Please, (do not) eat the turnover.
Escribir
Por favor, (no) escriban en español.
Please, (do not) write in Spanish.
  • To form negative formal commands, add no before the verb.
  • The placement of usted or ustedes, after the command, makes it nicer.
A table that displays formal commands with the placement of usted or ustedes after the command.
Escriba usted la carta. Escriban ustedes la carta.
Hable usted con la profesora. Hablen ustedes con la profesora.
Cierre usted el libro. Cierren ustedes el libro.

 

Verbs with irregular yo form conjugations, in the present tense, have the same irregular stems for the formal commands.
 
 

A table that displays verb infinitives with irregular yo form conjugations in the present tense, and their similar irregular stems for the formal command.
Infinitive yo form formal command
decir digo diga, digan
dormir duermo duerma, duerman
hacer hago haga, hagan
leer leo lea, lean
seguir sigo siga, sigan
tener tengo tenga, tengan

 

Some commonly used irregular commands are:

A table that displays irregular commands.
infinitive Usted/ustedes
dar dé/den
ir vaya/vayan
ser sea/sean

A nosotros command is when you suggest doing something with a group on which you are a part of, such as “let’s”.

A table that displays the subject pronoun Nosotros, and the proper ending to the command in which you are a part of the group being commanded, such as “let’s”.
Command -ar -er/-ir
Nosotros -emos -amos
Estudiemos juntos para el examen.

Let’s study together for the test.

Comamos pizza fría.

Let’s eat cold pizza.

Abramos la puerta lentamente.

Let’s open the door slowly.

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Spanish 002 by Ana Serrano is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.