Spanish Conditional Tense

The Spanish Conditional Tense is usually formed by taking the infinitive form of the verb (e.g. hablar (to talk/to speak), comer (to eat), vivir (to live), etc.) and adding the appropriate endings as follows:

  • Yo (= I) ía
  • Tú (= You (speaking to 1 friend) ías
  • Él/Ella/Usted (= He/She/You (speaking to one stranger)) ía
  • Nosotros/Nosotras (= We) íamos
  • Vosotros/Vosotras (= You (speaking to 2(+) friends)) íais
  • Ellos/Ellas/Ustedes (= They/You (speaking to 2(+) strangers)) ían

Therefore hablar’, ‘comer’ and ‘vivir’ are therefore known as the verb stems for forming the future tense.

So by way of example….

  • Hablar = To talk
  • Hablaría = I would talk
  • Hablarías = You would talk (speaking to 1 friend)
  • Hablaría = He/She would talk + You would talk (speaking to 1 stranger)
  • Hablaríamos = We would talk
  • Hablaríais = You would talk (speaking to 2(+) friends)
  • Hablarían = They would talk + You would talk (speaking to 2(+) strangers)
  • Comer = To eat
  • Comería = I would eat
  • Comerías = You would eat (speaking to 1 friend)
  • Comería = He/She would eat + You would eat (speaking to 1 stranger)
  • Comeríamos = We would eat
  • Comeríais = You would eat (speaking to 2(+) friends)
  • Comerían = They would eat + You would eat (speaking to 2(+) strangers)
  • Vivir = To live
  • Viviría = I would live
  • Vivirías = You would live (speaking to 1 friend)
  • Viviría = He/She would live + You would live (speaking to 1 stranger)
  • Viviríamos = We would live
  • Viviríais = You would live (speaking to 2(+) friends)
  • Vivirían = They would live + You would live (speaking to 2(+) strangers)

Irregular stems for the Spanish Conditional tense

As discussed the future tense stem is usually the infinitive itself. Unfortunately there are a number of irregular stems for forming the Conditional Tense as follows:

  • Verb – Conditional Stem
  • (To say/To tell: Decir) – Dir
  • (To do/To make: Hacer) – Har
  • (To put: Poner) – Pondr
  • (To want: Querer) – Querr
  • (To be able: Poder) – Podr
  • (To know: Saber) – Sabr
  • (To go out: Salir) – Saldr
  • (To have: Tener) – Tendr
  • (To come: Venir) Vendr

For the above verbs instead of using the infinitive, you use the irregular stem with the normal future endings, for example:

  • Diría = I would say (Not Deciría)
  • Tendríamos = We would have (NOT Teneríamos)

Note: The Conditional and Future Stems, regular and irregular, are identical. It is just the endings that differ between the Conditional and Future Tenses. See my Spanish Future Tense page.


I hope that the above has helped you to understand how to say the Spanish Conditional Tense.

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