Introduction to the verb contre-passer
Get the Conditionnel Passé (Conditional Past) tense conjugation of contre-passer. Includes a FREE downloadable reference sheet (no email required). Alternatively if you have a lot of text to check then use our free French Grammar Checker – no registration required!
The English translation of the French verb contre-passer is “to counterbalance” or “to offset.” It is pronounced as “kohn-truh-pa-say” in its infinitive form.
The language origin of contre-passer can be traced back to the Latin word “contra,” meaning “against,” and the French word “passer,” meaning “to pass.” It is a compound verb, formed by combining “contre” and “passer.”
In everyday French, contre-passer is most often used in the Conditionnel Passé tense, which is the conditional past tense. This tense is used to talk about events that would have happened or actions that would have been taken if certain conditions had been met in the past.
Here are three examples of contre-passer being used in the Conditionnel Passé tense:
- Si j’avais su, j’aurais contre-passé mes dépenses en achetant ce billet d’avion. (If I had known, I would have offset my expenses by buying this plane ticket.)
- Il aurait contre-passé son manque de sommeil en prenant une tasse de café avant la réunion. (He would have countered his lack of sleep by having a cup of coffee before the meeting.)
- Nous aurions contre-passé notre faim en mangeant des fruits secs en route. (We would have offset our hunger by eating dried fruits on the way.)
In these examples, contre-passer is used to express the idea of counterbalancing or offsetting something, such as expenses, lack of sleep, or hunger. The Conditionnel Passé tense indicates that these actions did not actually happen in the past, but they could have happened if certain conditions were met.
Table of the Conditionnel Passé (Conditional Past) Tense Conjugation of contre-passer
||Si j’avais l’argent, je l’aurais contre-passé.
||If I had the money, I would have passed it on.
||Tu m’aurais contre-passé ton livre.
||You would have passed me your book.
||Il aurait contre-passé la frontière.
||He would have crossed the border.
||Elle aurait contre-passé sa journée à travailler.
||She would have spent her day working.
||On aurait contre-passé le temps à faire la fête.
||One would have spent time partying.
||Nous aurions contre-passé le parcours.
||We would have passed the course.
||Vous auriez contre-passé l’information.
||You would have passed on the information.
||Ils auraient contre-passé la frontière en secret.
||They would have crossed the border in secret.
||Elles auraient contre-passé leur journée à explorer la ville.
||They (female) would have spent their day exploring the city.
Other Conjugations for Contre-Passer.
Le Present (Present Tense) Conjugation of the French Verb contre-passer
Imparfait (Imperfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb contre-passer
Passé Simple (Simple Past) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb contre-passer
Passé Composé (Present Perfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb contre-passer
Futur Simple (Simple Future) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb contre-passer
Futur Proche (Near Future) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb contre-passer
Plus-que-parfait (Pluperfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb contre-passer
Passé Antérieur (Past Anterior) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb contre-passer
Futur Antérieur (Future Anterior) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb contre-passer
Subjonctif Présent (Subjunctive Present) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb contre-passer
Subjonctif Passé (Subjunctive Past) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb contre-passer
Subjonctif Imparfait (Subjunctive Imperfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb contre-passer
Subjonctif Plus-que-parfait (Subjunctive Pluperfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb contre-passer
Conditionnel Présent (Conditional Present) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb contre-passer
Conditionnel Passé (Conditional Past) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb contre-passer (this article)
L’impératif Présent (Imperative Present) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb contre-passer
L’infinitif Présent (Infinitive Present) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb contre-passer
Struggling with French verbs or the language in general? Why not use our free French Grammar Checker – no registration required!
Get a FREE Download Study Sheet of this Conjugation 🔥
Simply right click the image below, click “save image” and get your free reference for the contre-passer Conditionnel Passé tense conjugation!
Contre-Passer – 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.
I hope you enjoyed this article on the verb contre-passer. Still in a learning mood? Check out another TOTALLY random French verb conjugation!