BLACK FRIDAY CYBER MONDAY SAVE 25% ON ANY PACKAGE »

a été réveillé vs était réveillé

GregoryC1Kwiziq community member

a été réveillé vs était réveillé

In filling in the blank for Bob __ par la reveil tous les jours (Bob was awaken by the alarm every day), I typed "a été réveillé par" instead of "était réveillé". Could you help me understand why the imparfait was incorrect? Thanks!

Greg

Asked 2 years ago
CécileKwiziq team memberCorrect answer

Hi Gregory,

The tense you used in 'a été réveillé ' is the perfect tense ( passé composé).

The imparfait 'était réveillé' is correct as the action is repetitive.

e.g.

J'ai été réveillé par les éboueurs dans la nuit = I was woken up/awaken by the rubbish collectors last night (One action in the past done and dusted.)

compared with - 

John était réveillé par les éboueurs toutes les nuits = John was woken up/awaken  by the dustmen every night  (Repetitive action which happened every night.)

Hope this helps!

ChrisC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

Hi Gregory,

Actually, the imperfect is correct and you answered in the passé composé.

Bob a été réveillé... -- a été is passé composé of être
Bob était révaillé... -- était is imperfect of être

You need the imperfect in this sentence because the action is repeated over a longer period (...was awaken every day...)

-- Chris (not a native speaker).

JohnC1Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

Hi Chris, 

As the verb 'to wake up' is se réveiller why is it not 'Bob s'était réveillé ....

John

AdoraB1Kwiziq community member

Hi John, 

Because se reveiller is a reflexive verb meaning that I carried the action out on myself. In other words, I am both the subject and the object. However, in Bob's example, Bob, the subject, is woken up by "the alarm", the object. So it is no longer a reflexive verb. I hope this helps.

MaryC1Kwiziq community member

“a été réveillé” is actually correct because the time frame has been specified. This overrules the “repetitive action” rule. 

Mary

a été réveillé vs était réveillé

In filling in the blank for Bob __ par la reveil tous les jours (Bob was awaken by the alarm every day), I typed "a été réveillé par" instead of "était réveillé". Could you help me understand why the imparfait was incorrect? Thanks!

Greg

Sign in to submit your answer

Don't have an account yet? Join today

Ask a question

Find your French level for FREE

Test your French to the CEFR standard

Find your French level
Thinking...