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

Introduction to the verb expédier

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The English translation of the French verb expédier is “to dispatch” or “to send.” It is pronounced as “eks-pe-dyay” in its infinitive form.

Expédier comes from the Latin word “expedire,” meaning “to set free” or “to hasten.” It is most commonly used in everyday French to refer to the action of sending or dispatching something or someone, usually in a prompt or efficient manner.

In the Subjonctif Plus-que-parfait tense, expédier is used to express a past action that was completed before another past action. This tense is formed by combining the subjunctive form of the auxiliary verb “avoir” with the past participle of expédier.

Three examples of expédier in the Subjonctif Plus-que-parfait tense are:

  1. J’avais expédié le colis avant qu’il ne parte en vacances. (I had sent the parcel before he left for vacation.)

  2. Elle était ravie que nous ayons expédié les invitations à temps. (She was delighted that we had sent the invitations on time.)

  3. Nous regrettons que vous n’ayez pas expédié la commande plus tôt. (We regret that you had not sent the order earlier.)

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

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

Other Conjugations for Expédier.

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

    Imparfait (Imperfect) Tense Conjugation of the French Verb expédier
   

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Expédier – 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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