looks like past tense instead of present tense

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Robin

Kwiziq community member

7 January 2019

2 replies

looks like past tense instead of present tense

In this example, the English translation seems like the present tense ... "is sitting".  But "assis" is the past participle for the verb s'asseoir / to sit.  How would this be described gramatically, or why not use l'imparfait or present tense? 

Also is this grammatical usage of a past participle "seated", unique to the verb s'asseoir?    Thank you.

Here is the example from above: 

Mon frère est assis dans la rangée devant moi.My brother is sitting in the row before me.

This question relates to:
French lesson "After / before versus in front of / behind (prepositions of time and place)"

Chris

Kwiziq community member

7 January 2019

7/01/19

Hi Robin, in French "to be sitting" is expressed as "to be seated". And seated is also a past participle.

Je suis assis. -- I am seated. (I am sitting.)

Grammatically, this is passive voice. And in passive voice, the past participle is used much like a normal adjective. So, yes, any verb can be used like that:

Elle était aimée. -- She was loved.

Robin

Kwiziq community member

7 January 2019

7/01/19

Merci!

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