Hey! Sign in to get help with your study questionsNew here? Join for free to post

French Tenses

Announcements Posted on
Why bother with a post grad? Are they even worth it? Have your say! 26-10-2016
    • Thread Starter

    can anyone help me with changing the present tense into the perfect tense?

    (Original post by Hannahcraig32)
    can anyone help me with changing the present tense into the perfect tense?
    Regular, irregular or reflexive verb?

    Pretty sure this is basic stuff, so it'll be in one of your text books, unless you're venturing into French from other pastures.

    Avoir: irregular
    j'ai eu
    tu as eu
    il/elle a eu
    nous avons eu
    vous avez eu
    ils/elles ont eu


    (Original post by Hannahcraig32)
    can anyone help me with changing the present tense into the perfect tense?
    The perfect tense, or passé composé as it is also known in French, has two parts: the so-called auxiliary verb (which will be either avoir or être, depending on your main verb) and the past participle. It's pretty much the same in English:

    He gives = present tense; He has given = perfect tense (where "has" is the present of the auxiliary verb "to have", and "given" is the past participle).

    So to change verb from the present to the perfect, you first need to establish if that verb takes avoir or être. Your être verbs are pretty limited (all reflexive verbs, plus a handful of others which I'll give below) so if in doubt, use avoir. Conjugate avoir in the present according to the given subject (je, tu, il, etc.) and then place the past participle of the main verb after it. You're done!

    Let's look at this example:

    Verb in the present tense - il donne
    Same verb in the perfect tense: il a donné

    List of common verbs that take être as their auxiliary verb: use the mnemonic "MRS VAN DE TRAMP" which gives you the first letters of the verbs in this list.


    Plus, as I said earlier, all reflexive verbs.

    So to form the perfect tense, you need to learn:
    - avoir and être in the present tense
    - the past participle of each verb you need to use - (there are quite a lot of irregular past participles, so this is important)
    - which verbs take être.

    Hello !
    I'm french !

    Conjugaison du verbe chanter au présent de l'indicatif (sing for the present tense)

    Je chante
    Tu chante
    il / elle / on chante
    nous chantons
    vous chantez
    ils / elles chantent

    Conjugaison du verbe chanter au passé composé (perfect tense)

    J'ai chanté
    Tu as chanté
    Il / elle / on a chanté
    Nous avons chanté
    Vous avez chanté
    Ils / elles ont chanté

    Les français utilisent beaucoup le passé composé, que ce soit à l'oral ou à l'écrit ! Ce temps exprime une action déjà accomplie qui n'a pas duré très longtemps.
    French often used the perfect tense (oral and written)

    Présent : Tu chantes avec ta mère = au moment où je parle, tu es en train de chanter avec elle (at the moment when I speak)

    Passé composé : Tu as chanté avec ta mère hier = elle et toi, vous avez chanté. C'est une anecdote, cela n'a probablement pas duré très longtemps. (a moment in the day)

    Imparfait : Tu chantais avec ta mère hier = cette activité a probablement duré toute la journée. (probably all the day)

    Pour retenir :

    Présent : Tu chantes maintenant.
    Passé composé : Tu as chanté tout à l'heure. Tu as chanté un instant.
    Imparfait : Tu chantais tout le temps.

    Sorry for my grammar mistakes in english, I begin to study it.
    • Thread Starter

    thank you guys for your help
Write a reply…


Submit reply


Thanks for posting! You just need to create an account in order to submit the post
  1. this can't be left blank
    that username has been taken, please choose another Forgotten your password?
  2. this can't be left blank
    this email is already registered. Forgotten your password?
  3. this can't be left blank

    6 characters or longer with both numbers and letters is safer

  4. this can't be left empty
    your full birthday is required
  1. Oops, you need to agree to our Ts&Cs to register
  2. Slide to join now Processing…

Updated: September 18, 2016
TSR Support Team
What were/are your predicted grades?

The Student Room, Get Revising and Marked by Teachers are trading names of The Student Room Group Ltd.

Register Number: 04666380 (England and Wales), VAT No. 806 8067 22 Registered Office: International House, Queens Road, Brighton, BN1 3XE

Reputation gems: You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.