Introduction to the verb cavaler
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The English translation of the French verb cavaler is “to gallop” or “to ride fast”. The infinitive form of the verb is pronounced as “kah-vah-lay”.
The word cavaler comes from the Latin word caballus, meaning “horse”. It is most often used in everyday French in the Conditionnel Passé tense, which expresses a hypothetical or future action that would have taken place in the past.
Three simple examples of the usage of cavaler in the Conditionnel Passé tense are:
- Si j’avais eu un cheval, j’aurais cavaler dans la prairie toute la journée. (If I had had a horse, I would have galloped in the meadow all day.)
- Tu aurais dû me laisser cavaler librement au lieu de me retenir. (You should have let me gallop freely instead of holding me back.)
- Elle serait partie cavaler sur la plage si elle avait eu le temps. (She would have gone for a fast ride on the beach if she had had time.)
Table of the Conditionnel Passé (Conditional Past) Tense Conjugation of cavaler
||Si j’avais su, je t’aurais cavaleé.
||I would have galloped.
||Tu aurais cavaleé plus tôt.
||You would have galloped earlier.
||Il aurait cavaleé plus vite.
||He would have galloped faster.
||Elle aurait cavaleé jusqu’au bout.
||She would have galloped all the way.
||On aurait cavaleé dans les champs.
||One would have galloped in the fields.
||Nous aurions cavaleé à cheval.
||We would have galloped on horseback.
||Vous auriez cavaleé avec nous.
||You would have galloped with us.
||Ils auraient cavaleé comme des fous.
||They would have galloped like crazy.
||Elles auraient cavaleé à travers la forêt.
||They (female) would have galloped through the forest.
Other Conjugations for Cavaler.
Le Present (Present Tense) Conjugation of the French Verb cavaler
Imparfait (Imperfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cavaler
Passé Simple (Simple Past) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cavaler
Passé Composé (Present Perfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cavaler
Futur Simple (Simple Future) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cavaler
Futur Proche (Near Future) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cavaler
Plus-que-parfait (Pluperfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cavaler
Passé Antérieur (Past Anterior) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cavaler
Futur Antérieur (Future Anterior) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cavaler
Subjonctif Présent (Subjunctive Present) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cavaler
Subjonctif Passé (Subjunctive Past) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cavaler
Subjonctif Imparfait (Subjunctive Imperfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cavaler
Subjonctif Plus-que-parfait (Subjunctive Pluperfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cavaler
Conditionnel Présent (Conditional Present) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cavaler
Conditionnel Passé (Conditional Past) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cavaler (this article)
L’impératif Présent (Imperative Present) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cavaler
L’infinitif Présent (Infinitive Present) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cavaler
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Cavaler – About the French Conditionnel Passé (Conditional Past) Tense
The French “Conditionnel Passé” is a compound tense used to express hypothetical or unreal actions in the past. It is formed by combining the conditional of the auxiliary verb “avoir” or “être” and the past participle of the main verb.
Start with the conditional of the auxiliary verb: For most verbs, use “aurais” (for “avoir”) or “serais” (for “être”) as the conditional form.
With “avoir”: j’aurais, tu aurais, il/elle/on aurait, nous aurions, vous auriez, ils/elles auraient.
With “être”: je serais, tu serais, il/elle/on serait, nous serions, vous seriez, ils/elles seraient.
Add the past participle of the main verb to this conditional form.
For example, if you want to say “I would have done,” you would use “j’aurais fait.” If you want to say “She would have gone,” you would use “elle serait allée.”
Common Everyday Usage Patterns
Expressing Unreal Past Scenarios
The Conditionnel Passé is often used to talk about actions that did not happen in the past, but you are speculating about what would have occurred if they had. It’s a way to discuss hypothetical situations in the past.
Si j’avais su, je t’aurais aidé. (If I had known, I would have helped you.)
Il serait venu s’il avait eu le temps. (He would have come if he had had the time.)
Polite Requests or Suggestions
It can be used to make polite requests or suggestions in the past.
Pourriez-vous m’aider, s’il vous plaît ? (Could you have helped me, please?)
Expressing Doubt or Uncertainty
It can convey doubt or uncertainty regarding past events.
Il aurait peut-être oublié notre rendez-vous. (He might have forgotten our appointment.)
Interactions with Other Tenses
You can use the Conditionnel Passé in combination with the conditional present to describe past actions that were hypothetical at the time they were spoken about. J’aurais aimé que tu m’appelles hier. (I would have liked you to call me yesterday.)
Indicative Past Tenses
You might use the Conditionnel Passé alongside indicative past tenses like the passé composé to contrast hypothetical and real past events. Il est venu hier, mais s’il avait pu, il serait venu la semaine dernière. (He came yesterday, but if he could have, he would have come last week.)
In some cases, you can use the Conditionnel Passé in combination with the conditional future to discuss unreal past events that could have consequences in the future. Si j’avais réussi mon examen, j’aurais un meilleur travail. (If I had passed my exam, I would have a better job.)
In summary, the Conditionnel Passé is used to express hypothetical or unreal actions in the past. It is often used in conjunction with other tenses to convey various nuances in French, allowing speakers to discuss imaginary past scenarios, make polite requests, or express doubt about past events.
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