Using imperfect or passe compose??

PippaB2Kwiziq community member

Using imperfect or passe compose??

When I was young... I use etais but to say he was promoted you don't say il etait promu but il a ete promu and I don't understand why you use this and not the imperfect. Please explain! I can't add accents on this so forgive me they are missing

Asked 1 month ago
CécileKwiziq team memberCorrect answer

Hi Pippa, 

When to use the passé composé or imparfait is extremely difficult for non-French natives and this question has been asked before.

Take a look at the answers to a similar question in the hope that it may clarify matters for you -

https://kwiziq.learnfrenchwithalexa.com/questions/view/l-imparfait-vs-le-passe-compose

 

Hope it helps!

JimC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

Hi Pippa,

It can be confusing to differentiate between when to use l'imparfait v passé composé.

"Quand j'était jeune." This is to reminisce a previous past progressive situation - not complete, but continuous historically.

"Il a été promu." This is a completed action  --  the person has been elevated to a more senior status.

Hope this helps.

Bonne continuation

Jim

ChrisC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

French imperfect is a lot like continuous form in English. Ask yourself: would you say,

When he was young, he was being promoted. -- Quand il était jeune, il était promu.
When he was young, he was promoted. -- Quand il était jeune, il a été promu.

 

Using imperfect or passe compose??

When I was young... I use etais but to say he was promoted you don't say il etait promu but il a ete promu and I don't understand why you use this and not the imperfect. Please explain! I can't add accents on this so forgive me they are missing

Sign in to submit your answer

Don't have an account yet? Join today

Ask a question

Find your French level for FREE

Test your French to the CEFR standard

Find your French level
Clever stuff happening!