Showing posts from December, 2017

The present participle and the gerund

Le participe présentYou have used the participe passé (past participle) many times with the compound tenses. Another participle is the participe présent (present participle). It is formed by dropping the -ons ending from the present tense nous form and adding-ant.
chanter  - to singnous chantons  - we singchantant  - singingpartir -  to leavenous partons  - we leavepartant  - leavingchoisir  - to choosenous choisissons -  we choosechoisissant -  choosingboire  - to drink

The passé simple

The passé simple (simple past, historical past) is a verb tense used mainly in written French, for literary and historical material. It may also be heard during a formal speech. It is the equivalent of the passé composé, used to recount a specific action in the past. When relating events, quality newspapers use the passé simple forrefinement. Scandal sheets will often use it to convey a sense of drama. When reading French literature of all periods, you will need to recognize the passé simple to get a full appreciation of the text.
Formation of the passé simpleThe passé simple of regular -er verbs is formed by adding the endings -ai, -as, -a, -âmes, -âtes, -èrent to the infinitive stem.répéter  - to repeatje répétai  - I repeatedtu repeats