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The imperfect tense or simply imperfekt is a grammatical tense that we use to talk about:
1. Habits or repeated action in the past
Zvaše je često. - He used to call her very often.
2. An action that took place simultaneously with another action
Orwell priopćavaše o španjolskom građanskom ratu iz prve ruke. - Orwell talked about the Spanish Civil War from the first hand.
The imperfect tense sounds archaic and tends to be used only in litterature. In daily conversations we always use perfect tense!
Here are some time markers that will help you to use it properly.
The imperfect tense in Croatian is formed by adding corresponding endings to the verb's present base form. There are three groups of endings -ah, -jah, -ijah.
For ex. "biti"; bi (verb's base form in present) + jah (ending) = bijah (1st person imperfect)
It's necessary to learn endings by heart!
|Person||1st group in -ah / pisati (to write)||2nd group in -jah / čuti (to hear)||3rd group in -ijah / pecati (to fish)|
|On / Ona||pisaše||čujaše||pecijaše|
In imperfect auxiliary verbs biti and htjeti have the endings of the 3rd group. In negation they are preceded by the word "ne", for ex. Ne bijah.
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