In the previous lesson we looked at affirmative tú commands - for when you are addressing people we are familiar with friends, family, colleagues. These informal commands are los mandatos informales and we use and vosotros to make them.  Remember that vosotros is used in Spain to address a group of friends or family members.  Ustedes is used in Spain when addressing a group in a formal situation.  In Latin America, ustedes is used for both formal and informal situations when addressing a group of people.

To form the negative tú command follow these steps:

1- Start with the present "yo" conjugation of a verb . 
2. Drop the "o"
3. Add the appropriate ending

  • For a verb ending in "-ar" add an "es"
  • For a verb ending in "-er" or "-ir" add an "as"

hablar = to speak
Yo hablo
Drop "o"
Add "es"
beber = to drink
Yo bebo
Drop the "o"
Add "as"
salir = to leave/ to exit/ to go out
Yo salgo
Drop the "o"
Add "as"

No hables tan rápido. Do not speak so fast.
No bebas refrescos. Do not drink pop.
No salgas por la noche.  Do not go out at night.

Negative Irregular Tú commands:

There are five (5) irregular tú negative commands forms which do not follow the pattern. Can you think of any you have seen?
ir vayas
saber* sepas

Here are some examples of Commands using Negative Irregular verbs. (Aquí hay unos ejemplos de mandatos con los verbos irregulares):

No vayas a la escuela sin tus libros. Do not go to school without your books
No seas terco. Do not be stubborn.
No estés de mal humor. Do not be upset.

*Saber is not often used in the imperative negative.

OJO:  Note that the reflexive pronouns go after "no" and before the conjugated verb when using a command with reflexive verbs.
Do you remember the Reflexive Verbs you learned in Unit 2 Section 3 (2.3)?

Here are some of the verbs you learned:

lavarse = to wash oneself
bañarse = to bathe oneself
secarse = to dry oneself
quitarse = to take something off of oneself
The reflexive pronoun that goes with "tú" is "te"
The negative tú command for lavarse would be:
     No te laves.

You should also watch the videos below. To enlarge, click on the full-screen option.