The imperfect tense (El tiempo imperfecto)      Antes, siempre     Sí, pero con las     hacía mis compras     rebajas que ...
The conjugation of -ar verbsJust as with other tenses, we always start withthe stem of the verb.                          ...
The conjugation of -er verbs           comer    comía         comíamos    comías        comíais    comía         comían   ...
The conjugation of -ir verbs                   escribir          escrib ía          escribíamos          escrib ías       ...
There are only three irregular verbs!                 ser            Notice the                                  written  ...
There are only three irregular verbs!                 ir           Notice the                                written      ...
There are only three irregular verbs!                 ver         veía          veíamos         veías         veíais      ...
The use of the imperfect The imperfect is always used to express age and time of day in the past:Yo tenía quince años cuan...
The use of the imperfectWhile the preterit tense is used to describeactions viewed as completed, the imperfect isused to ....
The use of the imperfectExpressing the habitual (used to, would)  One of the classic uses of the imperfect is to  describe...
The use of the imperfectExpressing the habitual (used to, would)Cuando yo era niño, yo . . .  When I was a child, I . . . ...
The use of the imperfectExpressing the habitual (used to, would)Of course, the imperfect is not limited to discussingchild...
The use of the imperfectWhile the preterit tense is used to describeactions viewed as completed, the imperfect isused to ....
The use of the imperfect  Expressing the ongoing (was . . . ing)The imperfect expresses something that washappening at a g...
The use of the imperfect Expressing the ongoing (was . . . ing)Frequently the ongoing action is interrupted by anotherabru...
The use of the imperfect Expressing the ongoing (was . . . ing)Frequently the ongoing action is interrupted by anotherabru...
The use of the imperfectWhile the preterit tense is used to describeactions viewed as completed, the imperfect isused to ....
The use of the imperfectExpressing mental, physical and emotional states  Alicia estaba contenta durante el concierto.    ...
The use of the imperfectWhile the preterit tense is used to describeactions viewed as completed, the imperfect isused to ....
The use of the imperfect     Describing scenarios and situationsEra un día triste. Hacía muy mal tiempo y llovía.Yo leía e...
The use of the imperfectWhile the preterit tense is used to describeactions viewed as completed, the imperfect isused to ....
The use of the imperfect     Expressing indirect statementsCarlos dijo que Juan venía a mi casa a las ocho. Carlos said th...
Overview of the use of the imperfect 1. Age and time of day in the past     Yo tenía treinta años cuando me    casé. thirt...
Overview of the use of the imperfect 3. Ongoing action   Carlos leía el periódico mientras su hijo cortaba   el césped.   ...
Overview of the use of the imperfect 5. Mental, physical, and emotional states   Juan pensaba que necesitaba más dinero de...
FIN
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12 the imperfect tense of regular and irregular verbs

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The imperfect tense in Spanish

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12 the imperfect tense of regular and irregular verbs

  1. 1. The imperfect tense (El tiempo imperfecto) Antes, siempre Sí, pero con las hacía mis compras rebajas que en las mejores ofrecen en este boutiques. almacén . . . ¡qué ganga!
  2. 2. The conjugation of -ar verbsJust as with other tenses, we always start withthe stem of the verb. Notice the hablar written accent mark! hablaba hablábamos hablabas hablabais only on the nosotros form hablaba hablaban hablaba hablabanThere are no irregular -ar verbs in the imperfect!
  3. 3. The conjugation of -er verbs comer comía comíamos comías comíais comía comían comía comían All forms have a written accent over the í.
  4. 4. The conjugation of -ir verbs escribir escrib ía escribíamos escrib ías escribíais escrib ía escribían escribía escribían All forms have a written accent over the í.Notice that the conjugation of -ir verbs is identical tothat of -er verbs.
  5. 5. There are only three irregular verbs! ser Notice the written accent mark! era éramos eras erais only on the nosotros form era eran era eran
  6. 6. There are only three irregular verbs! ir Notice the written accent mark! iba íbamos ibas ibais only on the nosotros form iba iban iba iban
  7. 7. There are only three irregular verbs! ver veía veíamos veías veíais veía veían veía veían All forms have a written accent over the í.
  8. 8. The use of the imperfect The imperfect is always used to express age and time of day in the past:Yo tenía quince años cuando aprendí a manejar. I was fifteen years old when I learned to drive.Eran las diez cuando el tren llegó a la estación. It was ten o’clock when the train arrived at the station.
  9. 9. The use of the imperfectWhile the preterit tense is used to describeactions viewed as completed, the imperfect isused to . . .• Express that which happened habitually• Express ongoing actions and states in the past, without reference to their beginning or ending• Express mental, physical, and emotional states in the past• Describe scenarios and situations in the past• Express indirect statements
  10. 10. The use of the imperfectExpressing the habitual (used to, would) One of the classic uses of the imperfect is to describe our childhood habits and activities:Cuando yo era niño, yo . . . When I was a child, I . . . . . . siempre estudiaba solo en mi cuarto. . . . always studied (used to study) alone in my room. . . . jugaba con mis amiguitos todos los días. . . . would play with my friends every day.
  11. 11. The use of the imperfectExpressing the habitual (used to, would)Cuando yo era niño, yo . . . When I was a child, I . . . . . . comía cereal cada mañana. . . . used to eat cereal every morning. . . . leía libros de cuentos todo el tiempo. . . . read storybooks all the time. . . . iba todos los veranos a Disneylandia con mis padres. . . . would go to Disneyland every summer with my parents.
  12. 12. The use of the imperfectExpressing the habitual (used to, would)Of course, the imperfect is not limited to discussingchildhood activities. Any habitual activities areexpressed in the imperfect. Pedro comía en ese restaurante todos los sábados. Pedro used to eat at that restaurant every Saturday. Ana iba de compras todo el tiempo. Ana used to go shopping all the time.
  13. 13. The use of the imperfectWhile the preterit tense is used to describeactions viewed as completed, the imperfect isused to . . .•Express that which happened habitually• Express ongoing actions and states in the past, without reference to their beginning or ending• Express mental, physical, and emotional states in the past• Describe scenarios and situations in the past• Express indirect statements
  14. 14. The use of the imperfect Expressing the ongoing (was . . . ing)The imperfect expresses something that washappening at a given time, without reference to itsbeginning or ending: Roberto estudiaba en su cuarto. Roberto was studying in his room. Elena lavaba los platos en la cocina. Elena was washing the dishes in the kitchen.Ayer a eso de las cuatro yo leía el periódico mientrasmi esposa miraba la tele. Yesterday around four o’clock I was reading the newspaper while my wife was watching TV.
  15. 15. The use of the imperfect Expressing the ongoing (was . . . ing)Frequently the ongoing action is interrupted by anotherabrupt or completed action that is expressed, of course,in the preterit: Roberto estudiaba en su cuarto cuando el teléfono sonó. Roberto was studying in his room when the phone rang. Elena lavaba los platos en la cocina cuando alguien tocó a la puerta. Elena was washing the dishes in the kitchen when someone knocked at the door.
  16. 16. The use of the imperfect Expressing the ongoing (was . . . ing)Frequently the ongoing action is interrupted by anotherabrupt or completed action that is expressed, of course,in the preterit:Conversábamos con el dependiente cuando Lourdesentró en la joyería. We were talking with the clerk when Lourdes entered the jewelry store.Las chicas salían de la tienda cuando Jorge las vio. The girls were leaving the store when Jorge saw them.
  17. 17. The use of the imperfectWhile the preterit tense is used to describeactions viewed as completed, the imperfect isused to . . .• Express that which happened habitually• Express ongoing actions and states in the past, without reference to their beginning or ending• Express mental, physical, and emotional states in the past• Describe scenarios and situations in the past• Express indirect statements
  18. 18. The use of the imperfectExpressing mental, physical and emotional states Alicia estaba contenta durante el concierto. Alicia was happy during the concert. Nos sentíamos mal después de comer allí. We felt sick after eating there. De niño yo siempre creía en Santa Claus. As a child I always believed in Santa Claus. Los estudiantes no querían estudiar aunque sabían que era necesario. The students didn’t want to study even though they knew that it was necessary.
  19. 19. The use of the imperfectWhile the preterit tense is used to describeactions viewed as completed, the imperfect isused to . . .• Express that which happened habitually• Express ongoing actions and states in the past, without reference to their beginning or ending• Express mental, physical, and emotional states in the past• Describe scenarios and situations in the past• Express indirect statements
  20. 20. The use of the imperfect Describing scenarios and situationsEra un día triste. Hacía muy mal tiempo y llovía.Yo leía en mi cuarto y esperaba una llamadatelefónica. Anita practicaba el piano en la sala ylos niños jugaban a la pata coja en el garaje.It was a sad day. The weather was very bad and it wasraining. I was reading in my room and waiting for atelephone call. Anita was practicing the piano in theliving room and the children were playing hopscotch inthe garage.
  21. 21. The use of the imperfectWhile the preterit tense is used to describeactions viewed as completed, the imperfect isused to . . .• Express that which happened habitually• Express ongoing actions and states in the past, without reference to their beginning or ending• Express mental, physical, and emotional states in the past• Describe scenarios and situations in the past• Express indirect statements
  22. 22. The use of the imperfect Expressing indirect statementsCarlos dijo que Juan venía a mi casa a las ocho. Carlos said that Juan was coming to my house at eight o’clock.Los agentes afirmaron que los espías hablabanmuy bien el inglés. The agents affirmed that the spies spoke English very well.El volante policíaco dice que el delincuente erabajo y cojeaba un poco. The police flyer states that the criminal was short and limped somewhat.
  23. 23. Overview of the use of the imperfect 1. Age and time of day in the past Yo tenía treinta años cuando me casé. thirty years old when I got married. I was Eran las tres cuando Hugo llegó. It was three o’clock when Hugo arrived. 2. Habitual action De niño, yo siempre comía cereal. As a child, I always used to eat cereal. Íbamos al parque con frecuencia. We would go to the park frequently. Hablábamos español en nuestra casa. We spoke Spanish in our house.
  24. 24. Overview of the use of the imperfect 3. Ongoing action Carlos leía el periódico mientras su hijo cortaba el césped. Carlos was reading the newspaper while his son was mowing the lawn. 4. Description—setting the scene Era un día muy lúgubre. El cielo estaba nublado y llovía a cántaros. It was a very gloomy day. The sky was cloudy and it was raining cats and dogs.
  25. 25. Overview of the use of the imperfect 5. Mental, physical, and emotional states Juan pensaba que necesitaba más dinero del que tenía para el viaje. Juan thought that he needed more money than he had for the trip. 6. Indirect statements Pancho dijo que su hermano vendía su coche. Pancho said that his brother was selling his car.
  26. 26. FIN

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