Kwiziq community member
12 July 2016
L'année dernière, j'ai été vraiment malade vs L'année dernière, j'étais vraiment malade
Similar question to Clif... Is the second option acceptable, and if so, is there any difference in meaning/emphasis? I was taught that j'ai été vraiment malade was used more to express "I have been really ill" in a sentence such as "Sorry I haven't been to see your recently, but I've been really ill" ...... is that correct?
Also, is it grammatically correct (and common usage) to say: j'ai été mangé (I have been eating)
Thanks in advance
This question relates to:French lesson "Conjugate être (+ avoir) in Le Passé Composé (conversational past)"
Kwiziq language super star
Bonjour Adrian !
Very interesting question indeed!
The past of être is always a bit tricky because the nuances between L'Imparfait and Le Passé Composé are not as easy to sense with this ''state-of-being'' verb. Both cases would be translated in English by ''Last year, I was really sick.''
1. L'année dernière, j'ai été vraiment malade.
-> In this first case, you're talking about the fact of having been sick as a punctual event that happened at a definite point in the past. You can also as you pointed out translate it with the Present Perfect "I have been sick" when linking it to a later consequence.
2. L'année dernière, j'étais vraiment malade.
-> In this second case, you're evoking that sickness as something that lasted in the past, in its temporality as a process (e.g. it would be a bit like saying ''I was being sick'').
I hope that's helpful!À bientôt !
13 July 2016
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