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Questions tagged [passé-composé]

The tag has no usage guidance.

4
votes
1answer
53 views

What is the difference between “le repas était délicieux” and “le repas a été délicieux”?

I studied at French class that "passé composé" is used as simple past in French language while it means present perfect. When I visited French sites, they mostly use "passé simple". So my question is ...
0
votes
1answer
77 views

Passé simple et passé composé [duplicate]

Il le disait si gaiement que je ne pus m'empêcher de rire. (Romains) Soudain il sut qu'elle l'avait trompé. Using the perfect (passé composé) to replace the past historic (passé simple) may ...
3
votes
1answer
127 views

Does the French passé composé have an “emphasis on the result of an action”?

For what I mean by "emphasis on the result of an action," please consider this pair of questions: Have you been to Paris? Were you in Paris? The first one may be said to have an "emphasis" on ...
1
vote
2answers
64 views

Imparfait de narration : Emploi du verbe mourir à l'imparfait (il mourait)

Albert Camus est mort accidentellement en 1960. J'ai rencontré la variante : Albert Camus mourait accidentellement en 1960. dans le livre French Grammar in Context (p. 14). Les auteurs parlent de ...
1
vote
1answer
38 views

Valeurs du passé composé

L'homme a toujours voulu posséder. J'arrive ; j'ai fini dans cinq minutes ! Dans les phrases ci-dessus, quelles valeurs exprime le passé composé ? Je sais que le passé composé présente un fait ...
2
votes
2answers
80 views

Why are all verbs in conditional+past tense sentence structure imparfait?

Example sentence En Anglais- "While I was studying, you were watching TV" Correct translation-"Pendant que j’étudiais, tu regardais la télé" Obviously the first part aka the conditional of ...
3
votes
3answers
289 views

L'accord du participe passé dans les temps composés

I have some difficulties grokking this subject, after reading a lot here and other sites, I've tried to create a flow chart that summarizes all the different cases, so it can be used by French ...
1
vote
2answers
71 views

Conjugaison. Lorsque l’on utilise « on »

Il y a quelques mois que je suis étudiant en France et, parfois, pendant mes cours j’entend le professeur dire des choses comme « On avez trouvé ce résultat » ou « On avez vu que cette formule...» ...
2
votes
1answer
158 views

Quel temps du verbe pour parler du passé?

Je lisais un passage qui parlait des événements et des gens du passé, mais en ce qui concerne les verbes, il y avait quelques-uns conjugués au passé composé, quelques-uns au présent, quelques-uns a l'...
1
vote
2answers
163 views

Two meanings of the verb “apprendre”

In the past tense, "apprendre" goes like this : J'ai appris à lire for "I learned to read" But what if you want to use it in the other meaning? Want I mean is that, verbally, you can say J'ai ...
1
vote
2answers
231 views

Why do the french use the imperfect tense when saying “I was” and “it was”?

Is "I was" in french "J'étais" or "Je fus" because I thought "J'étais" would be "I used to be" because it is in the imperfect tense but I have never seen "Je fus" before?? Basically what I am trying ...
1
vote
2answers
158 views

“J'ai été accueilli” vs “Je fus accueilli”

It looks like there's no difference to these two in actual meaning? I'm guessing it's kind of equivalent to “I was” and “I have been” but seem to be more interchangeable in French?
-1
votes
1answer
89 views

Does the Past Participle in a sentence stay the same when avoir is used? [duplicate]

It says in a textbook on this website (personactivelearn) that when you are using the auxiliary of 'avoir' in a past tense sentence that the past participle doesn't change to agree with the subject.......
8
votes
2answers
1k views

Imparfait or Passé Composé: “j'étais absent” or “j'ai été absent”?

I am a beginner in French language and I still find it hard to wrap around my head between Imparfait and Passé Composé. I know that Imparfait is used to describe continuous actions in past as well as ...
1
vote
1answer
77 views

Tense in “Chaque jour + past”

Quand j'étais enfant, chaque jour ma mère ___ un conte. Should the passé composé m'a lu or the imparfait me lisait go there? I tend toward the imparfait because the sentence is about an action that ...
2
votes
1answer
675 views

Full list of verbs conjugated with “être” and “avoir”

I've found a partial list of verbs that are conjugated with être and avoir: Monter, Passer, Retourner, Sortir, Apparaître. Can someone add others and explain their differences? Your help is ...
1
vote
2answers
96 views

Tense in “There wasn't enough time”

"I couldn't finish the exam in time yesterday. There wasn't enough time." Je n'ai pas pu finir l'examen à temps hier. Il (n'y avait pas / n'y a pas eu) assez de temps. Is the imparfait or the ...
1
vote
1answer
34 views

Position of “trop” in composed tense

In composed tense, should trop go before or after the main verb? J'ai trop lu/parlé hier. or J'ai lu/parlé trop hier. With beaucoup, the adverb goes before the main verb.
1
vote
1answer
57 views

Accord with indefinite noun

"There was a story she wrote that I really like." Il y a une histoire qu'elle a écrit que j'aime beaucoup. Here, do we need to write "écrite"? I think we don't, since une histoire is indefinite, ...
0
votes
3answers
67 views

Tense in “avoir/vivre une vie difficile”

"He had/lived a difficult life." Should we use the imparfait or the passé composé in the translation? Il avait/vivait une vie difficile. Il a eu/vécu une vie difficile. On the one hand, a ...
1
vote
1answer
92 views

Why do we use the passé composé when saying “there have always been x”?

For instance, "There have always been racists" is "Il y a toujours eu des racistes" NOT "Il y avait toujours des racistes". Based on what we're taught in French textbooks/classes, the passé composé ...
1
vote
2answers
262 views

Passe Compose vs Imparfait - Inconsistency in Usage

The difference between le passé compose et l'imparfait is clearly explained to a French learner by differentiating between a 'once off' event vs. something habitual or over an extended period of time. ...
1
vote
1answer
439 views

What is the difference between “il fallait” and “il a fallu”?

Il fallait trouver un autre solution. Il a fallu trouver un autre solution. This question has been bugging me for a while. Should I use "il fallait" to mean... There was a situation in the ...
4
votes
2answers
705 views

Translation of “I was there”

-- A: Were you at the party yesterday evening? -- B: Yes, I was there! What should be the translation of "I was there"? -- A: Est-ce que tu as été à la fête hier soir? -- B: Oui, j'y ai ...
2
votes
2answers
105 views

Tense in “I had a cold (for three days) last week.”

"I had a cold last week." Should this be translated using the imparfait "J'avais un rhume la semaine dernière" or the passé composé "J'ai eu un rhume la semaine dernière"? I think it should be the ...
2
votes
3answers
261 views

Is using “I went” – “je suis allé” instead of “I left” – “je suis parti(e)” correct?

The French text book I have (Equipe Dynamique) uses "Je suis parti" in the Vocabulary section to say "I went with my parents/a friend" instead of "Je suis allé" and I am wondering why.
2
votes
2answers
124 views

Can the pronoun 'en' replace the verb 'voyager' to express quantity?

Here is the model answer style the textbook presents me with: Modèle: As-tu trop d'argent? (assez) Answer: Non, je n'en ai pas trop. J'en ai assez. How would one answer the following question ...
2
votes
1answer
91 views

Why the need to say “je l'ai été” instead of “je l'étais”?

Vous avez l'air d'être l'un d'eux, comme je l'ai été moi-même, autrefois. Vous avez l'air d'être l'un d'eux, comme je l'étais moi-même, autrefois. The phrase "I used to be one of them myself" ...
0
votes
3answers
212 views

Position de l'adverbe de temps avec le passé composé

Quelle est la variante correcte? Je pense que seul le premier exemple est correct, mais je ne suis pas certain. Je suis demain allé en Italie. Demain je suis allé en Italie. Je suis allé demain ...
0
votes
2answers
390 views

composition avec le passé composé [closed]

Bonjour, je suis débutant et j'ai écrit un composition pour exercer le passé composé, mais je ne sais pas si j'ai utilisé les préposition et les contraction corrects. J'ai ete reconnaisant si quelqu'...
8
votes
2answers
707 views

Utilisation du passé simple au quotidien

J'étudie la langue française par moi-même et j'utilise Internet pour mon apprentissage. Je crois que je suis de niveau A1. Depuis que j'ai commencé, j'ai appris le passé simple. J'ai lu qu'à l'oral, ...
1
vote
1answer
116 views

Passé composé ou imparfait dans le cas du verbe « savoir »

Imaginez quelques personnes qui ont découvert hier un magasin à côté de leur maison qui existe depuis longtemps. Est-ce qu'il faut exprimer cette pensée avec imparfait (ils ne savaient pas assez ...
1
vote
0answers
38 views

Quelle est la difference entre devoir en l'imparfait et devoir dans le passe composé ? [duplicate]

Quelle est la difference entre « devoir » en l'imparfait et « devoir » dans le passé composé ? Je sais que « devoir » dans le passé composé signifie « what had to have happened » ou « what had to be ...
6
votes
1answer
113 views

Why is “être” used in “Son estomac s'est mis à gronder.”

If I understand correctly, the sentence means "His stomach started to rumble/growl". I just don't understand which tense is it? If "se mettre a faire + infinitive" means to "begin doing something" (...
4
votes
1answer
108 views

“Alors qu'il s'était allongé” or “alors qu'il s'était allongeait”?

I saw the following sentence in the tale "three little pigs" (you have to start somewhere, right :); Alors que le petit cochon venait juste de finir de construire sa maison et qu'il s'était allongé ...
3
votes
1answer
72 views

Conjugaison de l'auxiliaire en passé composé

J'ai un doute: C'est Hier c'est moi qui a décidé ou Hier c'est moi qui ai décidé Pourriez vous me dire la bonne réponse et pourquoi?
6
votes
2answers
356 views

The perfect tense of reflexive verbs

Why do reflexive verbs form their perfect (passé composé) forms with "être". Does it have any historical reasons?
4
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2answers
634 views

« Je n'avais pas le temps » ou « Je n'ai pas eu le temps » ?

Quelle est la différence entre : Je n'avais pas le temps. et Je n'ai pas eu le temps. Dans quelles occasions utilisez-vous chaque phrase ?
2
votes
3answers
352 views

Why is “Personne n'arrivait” using passé composé and not imparfait?

I would like to extend further this question No one has arrived in English would translate to Personne n'est arrivé in French. In English we would use present perfect tense because it signifies ...
1
vote
5answers
1k views

How to say “we didn't have fun there” in French ?

Nous sommes allés à la piscine. I then want to say that we didn't have fun there because the water was too cold. Can I say: Nous n'allons pas eu nous amuser parce que l'eau était trop froide. ...
4
votes
2answers
472 views

Why is there an 'a' here?

I saw this on the web: Il m'a écrit une lettre. Why is there an 'a'? Shouldn't it be "me"?
2
votes
3answers
270 views

Il a été capturé / il est capturé

I was reading a French article and I came upon this structure a few times: il a été capturé But in school, we were only (that I can remember) taught this: il est capturé So what is the ...
1
vote
1answer
78 views

Passive voice in the past [duplicate]

For the passive voice in the past (E.g. It was eaten), I've always used the imparfait: Il était mangé However, I've seen people say: Il a été mangé. Which one should be used when? My initial ...
2
votes
2answers
238 views

How to decide if an action has been completed or not to use imparfait?

I get very confused between using passé composé and imparfait. I know that imperfect is used for repeated actions, descriptions, state of mind or habitude but when it comes to changing the tense I can'...
2
votes
2answers
173 views

Quel temps dois-je utiliser en traduisant : le passé composé ou l'imparfait ?

J'ai une phrase comme ci-dessous : When he was a child, they lived in a cottage in the jungle Quelle traduction est correcte ? Quand il était enfant, ils vivaient dans une petite maison dans la ...
7
votes
3answers
501 views

Why do some verbs take être as an auxiliary?

I have a good handle on which verbs take être as an auxiliary, but why does être exist as an auxiliary? Is there some linguistic or historical rationale for existence of two auxiliary verbs in French? ...
3
votes
4answers
122 views

Should we say “l'indépendance a été officielle” or “est devenue officielle”?

I am writing a sentence about Vietnamese independence, and I want to express that Vietnam was officially independent in 1954. Here is my sentence: L’indépendance de Viêt Nam a été officielle dans ...
0
votes
1answer
189 views

Formation du passé composé

I came about the following sentences: Ils sont rentrés en ville Ils ont retrouvé le travail I just want to ask the following: Can we use "rentrés" in sentence (2), and "retrouvé" in ...
-1
votes
1answer
204 views

Writing a sentence in past tense in French

I read the following sentence in French: Le Parlement a modifié la loi. Does the above sentence mean? The parlement changed the law In this case, cannot we write the above sentence as: Le ...
4
votes
1answer
655 views

Passé composé vs imparfait: when to use which? [duplicate]

I am currently learning the imparfait tense, and I am confused about how it is different from the passé composé? In which cases would I use the imparfait instead of passé composé, and vice versa?