Introduction to the verb cancaner
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The English translation of the French verb cancaner is “to squawk” or “to gossip.” The infinitive form is pronounced as “kahn-ka-nay.”
The word cancaner comes from the French noun “cancan,” meaning gossip or chatter. It is most often used in everyday French in the Passé Composé tense, which is the equivalent of the English present perfect tense.
Three simple examples of its usage in the Passé Composé tense are:
J’ai entendu les voisins cancaner toute la journée. (I have heard the neighbors gossiping all day.)
Elle a cancané sur sa collègue toute la soirée. (She gossiped about her colleague all evening.)
Nous avons beaucoup cancané lors de notre dernier voyage. (We gossiped a lot during our last trip.)
Table of the Passé Composé (Present Perfect) Tense Conjugation of cancaner
|J’ai cancanné devant mon miroir.
|I gossiped in front of my mirror.
|Tu as cancanné toute la soirée.
|You gossiped all evening.
|Il a cancanné avec ses amis.
|He gossiped with his friends.
|Elle a cancanné sur sa voisine.
|She gossiped about her neighbor.
|On a cancanné sur les célébrités.
|We gossiped about celebrities.
|Nous avons cancanné au café.
|We gossiped in the cafe.
|Vous avez cancanné au travail.
|You gossiped at work.
|Ils ont cancanné sur leur patron.
|They gossiped about their boss.
|Elles ont cancanné toute la nuit.
|They gossiped all night.
Other Conjugations for Cancaner.
Le Present (Present Tense) Conjugation of the French Verb cancaner
Imparfait (Imperfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cancaner
Passé Simple (Simple Past) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cancaner
Passé Composé (Present Perfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cancaner (this article)
Futur Simple (Simple Future) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cancaner
Futur Proche (Near Future) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cancaner
Plus-que-parfait (Pluperfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cancaner
Passé Antérieur (Past Anterior) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cancaner
Futur Antérieur (Future Anterior) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cancaner
Subjonctif Présent (Subjunctive Present) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cancaner
Subjonctif Passé (Subjunctive Past) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cancaner
Subjonctif Imparfait (Subjunctive Imperfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cancaner
Subjonctif Plus-que-parfait (Subjunctive Pluperfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cancaner
Conditionnel Présent (Conditional Present) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cancaner
Conditionnel Passé (Conditional Past) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cancaner
L’impératif Présent (Imperative Present) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cancaner
L’infinitif Présent (Infinitive Present) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb cancaner
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Cancaner – About the French Passé Composé (Present Perfect) Tense
The French Passé Composé is a compound tense used to express actions or events that have been completed in the past. It is one of the most common past tenses in the French language and is typically used in everyday conversation to describe actions that occurred at a specific point in the past. The Passé Composé is constructed using an auxiliary verb (either “être” or “avoir”) and a past participle.
Formation of the Passé Composé
Set the auxiliary verb with either
“être” – used with a select group of verbs (mostly intransitive verbs of motion, reflexive verbs, and some others) or
“avoir” – used with most other verbs.
Conjugate the auxiliary verb
If using “être,” you must conjugate it in the present tense according to the subject of the sentence.
Je suis, Tu es, Il est, Nous sommes, Vous êtes, Ils sont
If using “avoir,” conjugate it according to the subject as well:
J’ai, Tu as, Elle a, Nous avons, Vous avez, Ils ont.
Add the past participle
For regular -er verbs, remove the -er ending and add -é (e.g., “parler” becomes “parlé”).
For regular -ir verbs, remove the -ir ending and add -i (e.g., “finir” becomes “fini”).
For regular -re verbs, remove the -re ending and add -u (e.g., “vendre” becomes “vendu”).
For irregular verbs, you’ll need to learn the past participles individually, as they don’t follow a regular pattern.
Common everyday usage patterns
Narrating Past Events
The Passé Composé is used to talk about specific actions or events that took place in the past. For example: “Hier, j’ai mangé une pizza” (Yesterday, I ate a pizza).
When describing a series of actions in the past, the Passé Composé is used. For example: “D’abord, je me suis réveillé, puis je suis allé travailler” (First, I woke up, then I went to work).
Describing Completed Actions
It’s used to emphasize that an action has been completed, often with a specific time reference. For example: “Elle a terminé son travail à 18 heures” (She finished her work at 6 p.m.).
Interactions with other tenses
The Passé Composé is often used in conjunction with the imperfect tense when telling a story or describing past events. The Passé Composé is used for specific actions that occurred, while the imperfect is used for background information or ongoing actions.
For example: “Il pleuvait quand j’ai sorti mon parapluie” (It was raining when I took out my umbrella).
Conditional and Future Tenses
The Passé Composé is used as a reference point in complex sentences to establish the sequence of events in relation to future or conditional actions.
For example: “Quand il est arrivé, je lui ai donné ton message” (When he arrived, I gave him your message).
The French Passé Composé is an essential tense for talking about completed actions in the past in everyday conversation. It’s important to master the choice of auxiliary verb and the past participle conjugation for various verbs to use it effectively.
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