I thought devaient être meant should have been...shouldn't it be les gens doivent avez été?

AnnC1

I thought devaient être meant should have been...shouldn't it be les gens doivent avez été?

Asked 2 months ago
CécileKwiziq language super starCorrect answer

Hi Ann,

It is the old perennial problem of whether to use the imperfect or the perfect tense.

With the additional difficulty of ‘devoir’

Devaient être = imparfait 

Or 

Ont dû être  passé  composé

Here the imperfect is better.

Devraient ( with an -r) être is should have been. 

Hope this helps!

AnnC1

Could you explain why that tense is better here?

CécileKwiziq language super star

The imperfait here describe how things used to be , were at that time in the past ...

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