Introduction to the verb diriger
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The English translation of the French verb diriger is “to direct” or “to lead.” It is pronounced as “dee-ree-zhay.”
Diriger comes from the Latin word “dirigere,” meaning “to guide” or “to set straight.” It entered the French language in the 12th century and has been used in its current form since the 17th century.
In everyday French, diriger is most commonly used in the Conditionnel Passé (conditional perfect) tense, which expresses a hypothetical action that would have taken place in the past. It is formed by using the conditional form of the auxiliary verb “avoir” or “être” followed by the past participle of diriger.
Si j’avais dirigé l’entreprise, nous aurions eu plus de succès. (If I had directed the company, we would have been more successful.)
Elle aurait dirigé le spectacle si elle avait été choisie pour le rôle principal. (She would have directed the show if she had been chosen for the lead role.)
On aurait dirigé le trafic s’il n’y avait pas eu d’accident sur la route. (They would have directed the traffic if there hadn’t been an accident on the road.)
In these examples, the verb diriger is used to express a hypothetical action or situation in the past. It is often accompanied by the conditional tense to indicate a consequence or result of that action.
Table of the Conditionnel Passé (Conditional Past) Tense Conjugation of diriger
|Si j’avais plus de temps, je t’aurais dirigé.
|If I had more time, I would have led you.
|Tu aurais dirigé l’équipe.
|You would have directed the team.
|Il aurait dirigé l’entreprise.
|He would have managed the company.
|Elle aurait dirigé le projet.
|She would have led the project.
|On aurait dirigé ensemble.
|We would have led together.
|Nous aurions dirigé vers le sud.
|We would have headed south.
|Vous auriez dirigé cette réunion.
|You would have led this meeting.
|Ils auraient dirigé la négociation.
|They would have led the negotiation.
|Elles auraient dirigé la campagne.
|They (female) would have led the campaign.
Other Conjugations for Diriger.
Le Present (Present Tense) Conjugation of the French Verb diriger
Imparfait (Imperfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb diriger
Passé Simple (Simple Past) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb diriger
Passé Composé (Present Perfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb diriger
Futur Simple (Simple Future) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb diriger
Futur Proche (Near Future) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb diriger
Plus-que-parfait (Pluperfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb diriger
Passé Antérieur (Past Anterior) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb diriger
Futur Antérieur (Future Anterior) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb diriger
Subjonctif Présent (Subjunctive Present) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb diriger
Subjonctif Passé (Subjunctive Past) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb diriger
Subjonctif Imparfait (Subjunctive Imperfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb diriger
Subjonctif Plus-que-parfait (Subjunctive Pluperfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb diriger
Conditionnel Présent (Conditional Present) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb diriger
Conditionnel Passé (Conditional Past) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb diriger (this article)
L’impératif Présent (Imperative Present) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb diriger
L’infinitif Présent (Infinitive Present) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb diriger
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Diriger – 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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