Present Perfect and Pluperfect - Gordon State College
Present Perfect and Pluperfect Lets look at the present perfect in English first: I have read that book. I have lived here for five years. Perfect means complete. All perfect tenses are by definition, therefore, past tenses. So whats the difference between I have read that book. And simply I read that book? The difference in this case is how we view the action. If we say, I have (or Ive) read that book, we see it as complete but having influence on the present. We might want to discuss it. I read that book means that its over and done with.
The second sentence is a little easier to explain: I have lived here for five years. That means not only have I inhabited this place for the past five years but also that I continue to live here. Sometimes the present perfect means that the action is complete but still going on in the present, and sometimes it means that the action still has influence on the present. I ate five candy bars.Action completed. Ive eaten five candy bars. -- . . . And maybe Ill eat some more! -or . . . And thats why my stomach hurts. -- Action may continue. Influence on the present The past perfect is easier to explain, but we dont always use it when we should. The past
perfect (also called pluperfect) is the past of the past. Juan had already eaten when we arrived. Both actions (eaten and arrived) are in the past. But the eating happened before the arriving. So arrived is past, and had eaten is the past of thatthe past of the past. Past Participle All perfect tenses are made up of two parts: the helping verb and the past participle of the main verb: helping verb past participle
He has eaten. They have left. I have studied. helping verb past participle We have seen. You have finished. She has fallen. This is how you form the past participle in Spanish:
Drop the ar and add ado: hablar pensar llegar hablado pensado llegado nadar almorzar estar nadado almorzado
estado Drop the er or ir and add ido: comer leer asistir comido ledo asistido poder querer venir
podido querido venido Click here to go to a brief practice exercise. There are, of course, irregular past participles in Spanish as there are in English. call jump look eat bring brought
have called have jumped have looked have eated???? have bringed???? have eaten have You have to memorize the irregular past participles in Spanish just as you do in English. volver vuelto (NOT volvido) poner puesto (NOT ponido) abrir abierto
etc. cubrir cubierto escribir escrito vervisto morir muerto decir dicho hacer hecho romper roto Helping Verb Now you need a helping verb to go with your past participles. What we use is the present tense of the verb haber. he hablado has hablado
ha hablado hemos hablado habis hablado han hablado Use these verb forms with all your past participles: he comido, has querido, ha vuelto, hemos trabajado, etc. Click here to go to a brief practice exercise. Pluperfect (Past Perfect) (Pluscuamperfecto)
The past perfect (also called the pluperfect and, in Spanish, the pluscuamperfecto), remember, is the past of the past and translates with had in English. ALL perfect tenses get a helping verb and a past participle: present perfect past perfect future perfect conditional perfect he has eaten he had eaten he will have eaten he would have eaten
As you saw, the present perfect tense has a set of helping verbs that come from haber: he has ha hemos habis han The same is true of the past perfect. The helping verbs for the past perfect are the imperfect form of haber: haba hablado
habas hablado haba hablado habamos hablado habais hablado haban hablado Note that the endings on haber for the past perfect are the endings for the imperfect tense: haba habas haba habamos
habais haban The present perfect is the PRESENT tense of haber + the past participle. The past perfect tense is the IMPERFECT (PAST) tense of haber + the past participle. Guess what the future perfect tense is composed of. But thats another lesson. Click here to go to a brief practice exercise.
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