A little question in french. passe composse or imparfait :-)

Discussion in 'General Off-Topic Chat' started by mustafag32g, Apr 1, 2016.

  1. mustafag32g
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    mustafag32g GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    Hey guys

    I generally know the rule for when to use passe composse or imparfait, but sometimems I get confused, for instance:

    He prefered his freedom: Il préférait sa liberté.
    I cannot see how this is an ended action in the past ? So is it correct with imparfait :-)?

    "James, I was wrong!"
    James, je m'étais trompé. I am not sure with this one :((

    And just a little detail, I want to say: they are unable to teach and inform. Can I say: Ils sont incapables d'instruire et d'informer. Can I remove de in "informer" or must I right de ? Because in english version you dont say "to teach and to inform" :-)

    THANK YOU !
     
  2. Omegadrien

    Omegadrien GBAtemp Advanced Maniac

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    The translation for "James, I was wrong!" is "James, j'avais tort" or "je m'étais trompé" or "je me suis trompé" or "j'ai eu tort" in french (yes, it depends of the context X_X)
    Yep, you have to keep the "de" of "d'infomer".

    "He prefered his freedom: Il préférait sa liberté." -> yep, it's ok.
     
    Last edited by Omegadrien, Apr 1, 2016
  3. Seita

    Seita GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    "Il préférait sa liberté" This sentence is grammatically correct. You can also use Passé composé but the usage of tenses varies and depends upon the context in which you use them. Think of it like past simple for passé composé and past perfect for imparfait. I am not a native speaker of French but I can tell you that
    "James, je m'étais trompé" is not very correct for conversation unless you are talking about something really old and not so recent.

    Edit: Look at this good article for more reference: http://www.frenchtoday.com/blog/passe-compose-versus-imparfait.
    The picture of the dog says a lot.
    You're welcome :)
     
    Last edited by Seita, Apr 1, 2016
  4. mustafag32g
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    mustafag32g GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    Thank you so much for clarifying! Both of you :D!
     
  5. Omegadrien

    Omegadrien GBAtemp Advanced Maniac

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    Seita likes this.