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    (Original post by Richy Rich$$)
    Oooh, great site! I'm almost 100% sure I won't be doing the imperfect or pluperfect subjunctives or the past historic at school, but I need to know them before I atempt to read the books I bought, so that site should come in handy

    (Original post by Richy Rich$$)
    Technically you are not supposed to know nay extra to do AEA french, but in practice you do. For example the literary will be written in the past historic and generally it requires a greater vocabulary and a very solid grammar knowledge

    Older literature is written uses the past historic tense. It has the same meaning as the past tense, but its quite a literary style. So instead of était and avait, you would normally see "fut" and "eut". Similar instead of pluperfect tense you might see the past anterior, which is just the past historic plus the past participle.
    So for example if you wanted to write - he went to bed as soon as they had left- in literary form, you would say, il se coucha des qu'ils furent partis.

    You might also see the use of the imperfect subjunctive, so "fusse" and "eusse". If you get stuck use this site-

    Thanks for clearing that up - and for the website, which is I can tell I'll be using a lot in the coming year.

    1) Preparation for a cambridge interview will differ somewhat from that for an oxford interview. As has already been said, oxford interviews focus almost exclusively on literature. You won't get oral lessons in your first year at ox, there is much less emphasis on actual language work.

    2) for the interview, reading books in the original is helpful. If you really struggle though, read translations, you will often find that, if they ask you about what you've read, that they just want your thoughts on the works. therefore if you've read the translations in more depth it will be easier to form opinions and ideas about the books/plays etc.

    3) language work. read newspapers/journals, pref in the foreign languages. even online newspapers will help. cultural/political/topical issues will be of great interest. I got asked about the headscarf issue in my interview, how i felt German society should treat this issue (given the number of Muslims living there) make sure you know something about the countries/cultures you will be studying.

    4) economics. It is a VERY useful subject to have in general, it has no direct relevance to the MML course at Cambridge, but if you can apply things you've learned during your alevel course to the societies of your chosen foreign langs, then they will be impressed. I did the same with Art alevel and Italian.

    5) Ab-initio languages. If you haven't already got gcse, it doesn't matter. Try and learn some of the language before you get to interview, at least some simple present tense conversational stuff. Learn a little about the culture and society where the language is spoken. perhaps look into some of the authors who are native speakers, even one book/play/painting will be something to start from. For Italian, my interview consisted of a lot of rattling about the similarities of Italian culture and Indian culture, religion etc blah blah.
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