August 3, 2020

Emmener ou Amener 

In the French language, there are a number of words which not only resemble each other in their structure, but also in their meaning. Among these words we can find the verbs amener and emmener, which can be a real headache even for advanced learners!

So if you'd like to know the difference between verbs emmener and amener and when to use one or the other, read on. Without further ado, let's immediately dive into the heart of the matter.

Emmener VS Amener

According to the Larousse dictionary, here is the definition of these two verbs:

Amener :

Bring someone with you: Bring your friend home.

Provoking someone's coming: Tell me what brings you.

The verb to bring therefore means to lead someone or something (animated) to a destination.

Emmener :

Take someone with you from one place to another; drive, transport: The bus will take you to La Concorde.

To bring someone with you to do something, to go and do something with someone: I'll take you to a restaurant for dinner.

Taking therefore means taking someone or something (animated) with you, to a place where you intend to stay.

Note :

The verbs  amener and emmener are both used with animate beings (a person or an animal) or with objects that cannot be carried.

How to conjugate them in the present indicative?

Emmener

Amener

J’emmène

Tu emmènes

Il / Elle / On emmène

Nous emmenons

Vous emmenez

Ils / Elles emmènent

J’amène

Tu amènes

Il / Elle / On amène

Nous amenons

Vous amenez

Ils / Elles amènent

How to distinguish them?

One of the main differences between emmener and amener is that with emmener, the focus is on the change of location and on whether or not there is presence after arriving at the destination (s).

If we use the verb emmener, it means that the person will remain present after arriving at the scene.

Examples of use:

Amener

  • J’amène mes enfants à l’école. (Je les dépose à l’école et je m’en vais)
  • J’amène Marie chez son père. (Je dépose Marie chez son père et je pars)
  • Il m’amène au restaurant. (Il me dépose au restaurant et ne reste pas avec moi)

Emmener

  • J’emmène mes enfants chez ma mère. (Je prends mes enfants avec moi et ils restent avec moi chez ma mère)
  • J’emmène Christine à Lyon pour les vacances. (Christine vient à Lyon aves moi pour les vacances)
  • Il m’emmène au restaurant. (Il vient me chercher et on mange ensemble au restaurant)

What about the objects?

Since the verbs emmener and amener are only used for living things, what about objects?

Well, when you want to talk about objects, you will use the verbs apporter or emporter.

Apporter: Take an object with you somewhere.

Emporter: Take an object with you when leaving a place, to go elsewhere.

Here, the emphasis is therefore on starting from a specific place, a starting point.

Examples of use:

Apporter

  • J’apporte le dessert pour ce soir.

Emporter

  • Il a emporté mon téléphone en partant de la maison.

You are now very familiar with the choice and use of emmener vs. amener , but also apporter vs. emporter. It's your turn !

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About the author 

Jaimi Saunders

J’aimi has worked in the education industry for over 20 years, gaining experience in teaching, mentoring, and coaching. As a seasoned educator he is passionate about advancing teaching excellence and student motivation. In addition to working in the education industry, he is also involved in continuing his personal education and improvement. Outside of the office, J’aimi enjoys, antique vehicles, motorcycles, and travelling to new destinations.

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