Past participle in French
Past participle (French participe passé) is a verbal form which is used for several roles, such as adjective and as part of compound tenses. The French past participle usually ends by -é, -i, -s, -u, -us, while the equivalents in English are -ed, -en.
When to use the past participle in French?
Past participle in French verbs is used as an adjective
- La porte ouverte (The open door)
- L'étudiant occupé (The busy student)
Past participle is used for build the compound tenses
(such as Compound Past, Pluperfect, Past conditional etc)
- J'ai ouvert la porte (I opened the door)
- Il a parlé à ses amis (He spoke with his friends)
How to form past participle in French?
In order to form the past participle, we add to the stem of the verb the ending, depending on the group of verb:
|1 group (parler = to speak)||2 group (finir = to finish)|
|Masculine singular||- é (parlé = spoken)||- i (fini = finished)|
|Masculine plural||- és (parlés)||- is (finis)|
|Feminine singular||- ée (parlée)||- ie (finie)|
|Feminine plural||- ées (parlées)||- ies (finies)|
The 3rd group of French verbs has three different models of the past participle formation:
|3rd group of verbs||
|Masculine singular||- s (appris)||- (fait, suivi, vu, cuit)||- us (dissous)|
|Masculine plural||- s (appris)||- s (faits, suivis, vus, cuits)||- us (dissous)|
|Feminine singular||- se (apprise)||- e (faite, suivie ,vue ,cuite)||- ute (dissoute)|
|Feminine plural||- ses (apprises)||- es (faites, suivies, vues, cuites)||- utes (dissoutes)|
Agreement of the past participle
We agree the past participle in gender and number when:
- it is used as an adjective: la fenêtre fermée
- it is a part of a compound tense and the main verb is conjugated with the auxiliary verb "être": je suis allée à la maison
- it is used as a passive form of the verb: il est blessé
- it is made of the pronominal verb: elle s'est appelée
We do not agree the past participle when:
- it is the part of a compound tense and the verb is conjugated with the auxiliary verb "avoir": ils ont ouvert la porte
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