Sunday, July 27, 2014

I tend to confuse FUI and FUE. Any suggestions?

Part I: writing fui and fue 

I have not written any entries on this blog for a while. A long while--sorry. This doesn't mean that I have not received questions from students, former students, and friends. One of the most common questions is the title of this post. Fui and Fue are very similar and confusing for English speakers. Let me know if the following explanation helps you remember how to write these words.


Fui and fue, or fue and fui, are different and similar. They’re both forms of the verbs "ser" (to be) and "ir" (to go) in the simple past tense. This is the complete conjugation: 

singular: yo fui, tú fuiste, usted fue, él fue, ella fue
plural: nosotros fuimos, vosotros fuisteis, ustedes fueron, ellos fueron, ellas fueron 

One of the problems is that “i” and “e” may have the same sound in English, but the sound is different in Spanish. Remember, 

 fui = sounds like foo-ee

…with emphasis on “ee;” in fact, in the past, the word “fui” had a written accent over the “i:” fuí. 

fue = sounds like foo-eh …with emphasis on “eh.” 

Think that the “i” on “fui” is the same as “I” (yo) and the “e” on “fue” is the “e” of “él” and “ella.” 

Yo fui
I was / I went

 usted fue,  él fue, ella fue
you (formal) were/went, he were/went, she were/went

 Perhaps the best way to remember the difference between fui and fue is that "I" (yo" goes with "i" (fui), and other people go with "e" (fue), or that all the singular, Spanish pronouns that have an "e" somewhere, goo "fue." This is not a rule, but it may help you to write "fue" and "fui" correctly.


  1. Let me know if the following explanation helps you remember how to write these words.Joe Mitchell

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  3. The association I used is fui sounded like free, as in I left and I am free. Fue sounded like fuh way, as in they went on their way

  4. I love the way you write and share your niche! Very interesting and different! Keep it coming!
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  5. Great blog, but I think something went wrong here:

    "you (formal) were/went, he WERE/went, she WERE/went"

  6. The beginner class is composed of students who have the slightest idea about the Spanish language. Spanish transcription services

  7. Denis is being coy. To be clear, the translation should be:

    usted fue, él fue, ella fue
    you (formal) were/went, he was/went, she was/went

    But I understand this blog is about Spanish, not English. I appreciate your help with Spanish. Thank you, and I hope you continue adding posts.


  8. this is very useful informative posting !
    thank you for your sharing this good informations !