Subjonctif Passé (Subjunctive Past) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb acquitter

Introduction to the verb acquitter

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The English translation of the French verb acquitter is “to acquit.” It is pronounced “ah-kee-tay” in its infinitive form.

The word acquitter comes from the Latin word “ad” (to) and “quietare” (to quiet). In everyday French, it is most often used in the Subjonctif Passé tense, which is used to express actions that were expected to be completed in the past but may or may not have been fulfilled.

Here are 3 simple examples of its usage in this tense, with the respective English translations:

  1. Je doute qu’il se soit acquitté de ses dettes. (I doubt that he has acquitted himself of his debts.)

  2. Il est possible qu’elle ne se soit pas acquittée de sa tâche à temps. (It is possible that she did not acquit herself of her task on time.)

  3. Nous espérons que vous vous soyez acquittés de vos responsabilités. (We hope that you have acquitted yourselves of your responsibilities.)

Table of the Subjonctif Passé (Subjunctive Past) Tense Conjugation of acquitter

Pronoun Conjugation Example Usage English Translation
je aie acquitté Je ne crois pas que j’aye acquitté. I don’t think I paid.
tu aies acquitté Il faut que tu aies acquitté. You must have paid.
il ait acquitté Il est possible qu’il ait acquitté. It’s possible he paid.
elle ait acquitté Elle craint qu’elle ait acquitté. She fears she paid.
on ait acquitté On veut qu’on ait acquitté. We want it to have been paid.
nous ayons acquitté Il est important que nous ayons acquitté. It’s important that we paid.
vous ayez acquitté Je suis content que vous ayez acquitté. I’m glad you paid.
ils aient acquitté Ils doutent qu’ils aient acquitté. They doubt they paid.
elles aient acquitté Elles préfèrent qu’elles aient acquitté. They prefer they paid.

Other Conjugations for Acquitter.

   
    Le Present (Present Tense) Conjugation of the French Verb acquitter
   

    Imparfait (Imperfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb acquitter
   

    Passé Simple (Simple Past) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb acquitter
   

    Passé Composé (Present Perfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb acquitter
   

    Futur Simple (Simple Future) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb acquitter
   

    Futur Proche (Near Future) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb acquitter
   

    Plus-que-parfait (Pluperfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb acquitter
   

    Passé Antérieur (Past Anterior) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb acquitter

    Futur Antérieur (Future Anterior) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb acquitter

    Subjonctif Présent (Subjunctive Present) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb acquitter

    Subjonctif Passé (Subjunctive Past) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb acquitter     (this article)

    Subjonctif Imparfait (Subjunctive Imperfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb acquitter

    Subjonctif Plus-que-parfait (Subjunctive Pluperfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb acquitter
   

    Conditionnel Présent (Conditional Present) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb acquitter
   

    Conditionnel Passé (Conditional Past) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb acquitter

    L’impératif Présent (Imperative Present) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb acquitter

    L’infinitif Présent (Infinitive Present) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb acquitter

    Struggling with French verbs or the language in general? Why not use our free French Grammar Checker – no registration required!
   

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Acquitter – About the French Subjonctif Passé (Subjunctive Past) Tense

The French Subjonctif Passé is a verb tense used to express actions or states that are uncertain, hypothetical, or dependent on some condition in the past. It’s often used in conjunction with the main verb in the present or future tense to convey various nuances of doubt, desire, necessity, or emotion.

NOTE: To take a deep dive into all the French tenses then see my article on Mastering French Tense Conjugation.

Formation of the Subjonctif Passé

To form the Subjonctif Passé, you generally need to start with the third person plural (ils/elles) form of the passé composé (a compound past tense). Then, drop the subject and replace it with the appropriate Subjonctif endings. The endings are the same for regular -er, -ir, and -re verbs:

   – For -er verbs: -e, -es, -e, -ions, -iez, -ent
   – For -ir verbs: -isse, -isses, -ît, -issions, -issiez, -issent
   – For -re verbs: -e, -es, -e, -ions, -iez, -ent

For example, if you have the verb “parler” (to speak) in the third person plural passé composé, which is “ils ont parlé” (they spoke), the Subjonctif Passé form would be “qu’ils aient parlé” (that they spoke).

Everyday Usage Patterns

The Subjonctif Passé is commonly used in various situations:

– Expressing doubt or uncertainty: It’s used when you’re not certain about the completion of an action in the past. For example, “Je doute qu’il ait mangé” (I doubt that he ate).

– Desires and preferences: When you want or wish for something to have happened in the past. For instance, “Je préfère que tu aies réussi” (I prefer that you have succeeded).

– Expressing emotions: To convey emotions or feelings related to past actions or events. For example, “Il est content que nous ayons gagné” (He is happy that we won).

– Hypothetical situations: When discussing hypothetical or unreal past situations. For example, “Si j’avais su, j’aurais souhaité qu’ils aient été là” (If I had known, I would have wished they had been there).

Interactions with Other Tenses

The Subjonctif Passé often interacts with other tenses to convey specific meanings:

Present tense

It’s commonly used after expressions of doubt, desire, necessity, or emotion in the present. For example, “Il faut que tu aies fini” (You must have finished).

Future tense

It’s used in the future for hypothetical or unreal actions in the past when the main clause is in the future. For example, “Je douterai qu’ils aient terminé demain” (I will doubt that they have finished tomorrow).

Conditional

When the main clause is in the conditional, the Subjonctif Passé can be used to express unreal or hypothetical actions in the past. For instance, “Il voudrait que nous ayons réussi” (He would like us to have succeeded).

Summary

The Subjonctif Passé is a versatile tense used in French to convey uncertainty, doubt, desire, or hypothetical situations related to past actions. It is used in various everyday contexts and interacts with other tenses to express specific nuances in the language.

I hope you enjoyed this article on the verb acquitter. Still in a learning mood? Check out another TOTALLY random French verb conjugation!

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