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One of the most remarkable differences between the English and French grammar are the verb tenses. So before you start studying them you have to know that some tenses might be different in English and the other way round.
|In English||In French|
|Past anterior||Pass antérieur|
|Litterary past tense||Passé simple|
In general we have to make a big difference between the passé composé (present perfect) and the imperfect tense in French. Therefore pay close attention to the following rules:
|L'imparfait (Imperfect)||Le passé composé (Completed past)|
Il jouait au football tous les samedis.
(He played football every saturday.)
Il a joué au football hier.
(He played football yesterday.)
Elle parlait souvent au professeur.
(She often spoke to the teacher.)
Elle a parlé une fois au professeur.
(She spoke to the teacher once.)
When it comes to the plus-que parfait (past perfect) and the passé antérieur we also have to make several distinctions.
|Le plus-que-parfait||Le passé antérieur|
Hier j'ai vu Sandra qui avait été quinze jours sur la Côte d'Azur.
(Yesterday I saw Sandra who had spent fifteen days at the French Riviera.)
Je fus arrivé à la plage.
(I had arrived at the beach.)
Il était allé à l’école de management.
(He had gone to management school.)
Anne et Christiane se furent téléphoné.
(Anne and Christiane had spoken on the telephone.)
For further information concerning the past tenses in French check out our subchapters!
|1 Imperfect in French||Get an overview about the imparfait and passé simple in French and study this topic online.|
|2 le passé simple in French||Get an comprehensive overview about the litterary past tense in French|
|3 Completed Past in French (Passé composé)||Get an overview about the present perfect in French and study this topic online.|
|4 Pluperfect in French (Plus-que-parfait)||Get an overview about the pluperfect in French and study this topic online.|
|5 Le passé antérieur in French||Get an comprehensive overview about the past anterior in French and learn the topic online|
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