Introduction to the verb compliquer
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The English translation of the French verb compliquer is “to complicate.”
The infinitive form of compliquer is pronounced as “kohm-plee-kay.”
Compliquer originates from the Latin word “complicare,” meaning “to fold together” or “to intertwine.” It entered the French language in the 15th century and has since evolved to mean “to make something difficult or complex.”
In everyday French, the Conditionnel Passé tense is typically used to express a hypothetical or unreal action in the past. It is formed by using the auxiliary verb “avoir” or “être” in the Conditionnel Présent tense, followed by the past participle of the main verb.
Here are 3 simple examples of compliquer in the Conditionnel Passé tense, with their corresponding English translations:
- Si j’avais suivi tes conseils, je n’aurais pas compliqué les choses. (If I had followed your advice, I wouldn’t have complicated things.)
- Il aurait pu venir en vacances avec nous, mais il a choisi de compliquer les choses en restant à la maison. (He could have come on vacation with us, but he chose to complicate things by staying at home.)
- Elles se seraient disputées si je n’avais pas compliqué la situation en intervenant. (They would have argued if I hadn’t complicated the situation by intervening.)
Table of the Conditionnel Passé (Conditional Past) Tense Conjugation of compliquer
||Si j’avais écouté, j’aurais compliqué les choses.
||If I had listened, I would have complicated things.
||Tu aurais compliqué la situation.
||You would have complicated the situation.
||Il aurait compliqué les règles.
||He would have complicated the rules.
||Elle aurait compliqué sa vie.
||She would have complicated her life.
||On aurait compliqué les choses.
||One would have complicated things.
||Nous aurions compliqué notre voyage.
||We would have complicated our trip.
||Vous auriez compliqué les choses.
||You would have complicated things.
||Ils auraient compliqué les négociations.
||They would have complicated the negotiations.
||Elles auraient compliqué les choses.
||They (female) would have complicated things.
Other Conjugations for Compliquer.
Le Present (Present Tense) Conjugation of the French Verb compliquer
Imparfait (Imperfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb compliquer
Passé Simple (Simple Past) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb compliquer
Passé Composé (Present Perfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb compliquer
Futur Simple (Simple Future) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb compliquer
Futur Proche (Near Future) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb compliquer
Plus-que-parfait (Pluperfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb compliquer
Passé Antérieur (Past Anterior) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb compliquer
Futur Antérieur (Future Anterior) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb compliquer
Subjonctif Présent (Subjunctive Present) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb compliquer
Subjonctif Passé (Subjunctive Past) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb compliquer
Subjonctif Imparfait (Subjunctive Imperfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb compliquer
Subjonctif Plus-que-parfait (Subjunctive Pluperfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb compliquer
Conditionnel Présent (Conditional Present) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb compliquer
Conditionnel Passé (Conditional Past) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb compliquer (this article)
L’impératif Présent (Imperative Present) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb compliquer
L’infinitif Présent (Infinitive Present) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb compliquer
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Compliquer – 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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