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

Introduction to the verb calamistrer

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The English translation of the French verb calamistrer is “to curl (one’s hair).” The infinitive form of calamistrer is pronounced “kah-lah-meest-reh.”

The word calamistrer comes from the Latin term calamistrare, which means “to curl with a heated iron.” It is most commonly used in everyday French in the Subjonctif Plus-que-parfait tense, which is used to talk about actions that could have happened in the past but did not.

  1. J’aurais aimé que tu aies calamistré tes cheveux avant la fête. (I would have liked that you had curled your hair before the party.)
  2. Il aurait fallu que je me sois calamistré les cheveux pour ce rendez-vous. (I should have curled my hair for this date.)
  3. Elle aurait préféré que son coiffeur ait calamistré ses cheveux pour son mariage. (She would have preferred that her hairdresser had curled her hair for her wedding.)

Table of the Subjonctif Plus-que-parfait (Subjunctive Pluperfect) Tense Conjugation of calamistrer

Pronoun Conjugation Example Usage English Translation
je eusse calamistré J’aurais aimé que je eusse calamistré. I wish I had styled.
tu eusses calamistré J’aurais aimé que tu eusses calamistré. I wish you had styled.
il eût calamistré J’aurais aimé qu’il eût calamistré. I wish he had styled.
elle eût calamistré J’aurais aimé qu’elle eût calamistré. I wish she had styled.
on eût calamistré J’aurais aimé qu’on eût calamistré. I wish one had styled.
nous eussions calamistré J’aurais aimé que nous eussions calamistré. I wish we had styled.
vous eussiez calamistré J’aurais aimé que vous eussiez calamistré. I wish you had styled.
ils eussent calamistré J’aurais aimé qu’ils eussent calamistré. I wish they had styled.
elles eussent calamistré J’aurais aimé qu’elles eussent calamistré. I wish they had styled.

Other Conjugations for Calamistrer.

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

    Imparfait (Imperfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb calamistrer
   

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

    L’infinitif Présent (Infinitive Present) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb calamistrer
    (this article)

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Calamistrer – About the French Subjonctif Plus-que-parfait (Subjunctive Pluperfect) Tense

The French Subjonctif Plus-que-parfait, also known as the Pluperfect Subjunctive, is a verb tense used to express actions or states that occurred before another action in the past, and it’s used in situations where the indicative mood is in the past subjunctive or conditional mood.
NOTE: To take a deep dive into all the French tenses then see my article on Mastering French Tense Conjugation.

Formation

To form the Subjonctif Plus-que-parfait, you start with the imperfect subjunctive form of the auxiliary verb “avoir” or “être,” followed by the past participle of the main verb. 
For “avoir” verbs: Take the imperfect subjunctive form of “avoir” (e.g., j’eusse, tu eusses, il/elle eût, nous eussions, vous eussiez, ils/elles eussent). Add the past participle of the main verb. 
For “être” verbs: Take the imperfect subjunctive form of “être” (e.g., je fusse, tu fusses, il/elle fût, nous fussions, vous fussiez, ils/elles fussent). Add the past participle of the main verb.

Common Everyday Usage Patterns

Hypothetical Situations

The Subjonctif Plus-que-parfait is often used to express hypothetical or unreal actions that occurred before another past action.
For example: J’aurais aimé que tu aies fini ton travail avant que je sois arrivé. (I would have liked for you to have finished your work before I arrived.) 

Reported Speech

In reported speech, you may use the Subjonctif Plus-que-parfait to convey what someone said or thought in the past. 
For example: Il m’a dit qu’il avait peur que je n’aie pas compris. (He told me that he was afraid that I hadn’t understood.) 

Doubt, Wishes, and Emotions

This tense can also be used to express doubt, wishes, and emotions about past actions. 
For example: Je doutais qu’il eût dit la vérité. (I doubted that he had told the truth.) 
J’aurais souhaité que tu fusses venu. (I would have wished for you to have come.)

Interactions with Other Tenses

Present Subjunctive

The Subjonctif Plus-que-parfait can be used to describe past actions when the main verb is in the present subjunctive. 
For example: “Il faut que j’aie fini mon travail avant que tu partes.” (I must have finished my work before you leave.) 

Imperfect Subjunctive

It’s common to use the Subjonctif Plus-que-parfait with the imperfect subjunctive in complex sentences. 
For example: “Il m’avait dit qu’il fût rentré avant la fin de la journée.” (He had told me that he had returned before the end of the day.) 

Conditional

When the main verb is in the conditional mood, the Subjonctif Plus-que-parfait can be used to express past unreal conditions. 
For example: “Si j’avais su, j’aurais voulu que tu aies réussi.” (If I had known, I would have wanted you to have succeeded.)

Summary

The Subjonctif Plus-que-parfait is a complex tense used to convey nuanced meanings in French. While its usage may seem intricate, it becomes more intuitive with practice and exposure to the language. It’s important to understand the context in which it’s used, as it often conveys subtleties of time, conditionality, and emotion in French sentences.

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