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Si tu avais été plus petit, tu aurais pu être jockey.

Jennifer

Kwiziq community member

19 May 2017

4 replies

Si tu avais été plus petit, tu aurais pu être jockey.

why is it not si tu aurais été plus petit in this example , as it seems more conditional than past?

This relates to:
Conjugate être, avoir, faire, prendre (+ avoir) in Le Plus-que-parfait (pluperfect tense) -

Aurélie

Kwiziq language super star

19 May 2017

19/05/17

Bonjour Jennifer !

When you express an hypothesis with an "if" clause, the verb following "if" is in the Simple Past, not Conditional:
"If I *bought* a house, I would be happy."
You don't say "If I *would buy* a house..."

It's the same in French, where we use L'Imparfait after "si":
"Si j'*achetais* une maison, je serais heureux."

See the related lesson:
https://progress.lawlessfrench.com/revision/grammar/l-imparfait-usage-in-hypothetical-clauses-introduced-by-si-if-followed-by-le-conditionnel-present

I hope that's helpful!
À bientôt !

Jennifer

Kwiziq community member

19 May 2017

19/05/17

Very helpful, thank you

Chris

Kwiziq community member

22 May 2017

22/05/17

The case at hand deals with the past and therefore it uses the plusqueparfai in the main clause and the conditionel passé in the si-clause: If I HAD BEEN smaller I COULD HAVE BEEN a jockey.

With the imperfect in the main clause and the conditionel présent in the si-clause it translates as: If I WERE smaller I WOULD BE a jockey.

This is actually completely parallel to English.

-- Chris.

Jennifer

Kwiziq community member

22 May 2017

22/05/17

Thank you

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