In previous posts we have learnt about the “Pretérito Perfecto”, the “Imperfecto” and the “Indefinido”. In this post we are going to learn how to form and use the “Pluscuamperfecto”, the last of the past tenses in Spanish. In a next post we will learn how to use all the four in combination.
The Pluscuamperfecto is a compound tense, which means that is formed with the auxiliary verb, “haber” in the imperfect tense and followed the participe of the verb.
We use this tense to talk about a past and finished action previous to another finished action or moment also in the past. Note: It is equivalent to the Past Perfect in English.
– La película ya había terminado cuando llegamos a casa.
– The movie had already finished when we arrived home.
– Habíamos estudiado mucho para el examen, pero suspendimos.
– We had studied a lot for the exam but we failed.
As you can see, in both examples, the sentences talked about two past situations, and there are two actions in each sentence: the one in pluscuamperfecto (past perfect) is previous in time to the one in the indefinido (past simple).
Finally, you can download a printable version of this lesson in the link below. You will also find a second link to a pdf with some exercises to practice and reinforce the knowledge. Remember that you can get a personalized correction for free by sending your answers to firstname.lastname@example.org and I will get back to you with the corrections as soon as my busy teaching schedule allow me.
- Theory explanation [pdf]: http://mariaortegagarcia.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/12/Pluscuamperfecto_teoría.pdf
- Practical exercises [pdf]: http://mariaortegagarcia.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/12/Pluscuamperfecto_ejercicios.pdf
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