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Course Introduction

1. Nouns & Articles

2. Ser & Estar

3. Nouns & Adjectives

4. Regular Verbs

5. Ser/Estar (Past Tense)

6. Core Irregular Verbs (Present & Past)

7. Imperfect

8. Adverbs

9. Prepositions

10. Stem-changing Verbs - Part 1

11. Stem-changing Verbs - Part 2

12. Imperfect vs. Preterite

13. Syntax: Objects Overview

14. Past Participles & Present Perfect

15. Irregular and Go-verbs (Present)

16. Verbs with Irregular Yo-forms (Past)

17. Direct Object Pronouns

18. Indirect Object Pronouns, Direct & Indirect Object Pronouns Together

19. Reflexive Verbs

20. Verbs like Gustar

21. Present & Past Progressive

22. Past Perfect & Infinitive Constructions

23. Future Simple

24. Conditional

25. The Imperative

Episode #22

Past Perfect + Infinitive Constructions

I. Intro

Remember our lesson on the present perfect? If you’re a little fuzzy, it might be a good idea to brush up on it before starting this lesson. If you have a basic grasp on the present perfect, the past perfect is a breeze.

Let’s quickly review the basics.

The present perfect tense is a compound verb tense that uses two verbs in its construction – haber + a main verb in the past participle (the -ado/-ido form). It expresses the idea that something “has happened” very recently (namely today), or at an undetermined time before the moment of speaking. This is contrasted by the preterite tense, where the time that the event occurred is known by the speaker. In the present perfect, the present tense of the verb haber is used:

Haber

he hemos
has
ha han

He estado muy ocupado esta semana.
I have been very busy this week.

¿Nunca has visto esta película? No me lo creo.
You’ve never seen this movie? I don’t believe it.

II. Past perfect

As you’ve seen above, the present perfect refers to an event that occurred at any time before the moment of speaking. The past perfect functions similarly, except that is has no relation to the present moment – we’re talking about 2 things that happened in the past. The point of reference is at a moment in the past. That is, that you “had done something” or “something had happened” before another moment in the past. Sounds a little tricky, but really it’s not. We do the exact same thing in English.

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