The imperfect subjunctive
(or the past subjunctive,
el imperfecto de subjuntivo):
A.Forms of the imperfect subjunctive.
•Take the third person plural form of the preterit
(e.g., hablaron),
•then drop the -on from the end, which gives you
the stem (hablar-) for the imperfect subjunctive.
•The endings are the same for all verbs: -a, -as, a, -amos, -ais, -an.
hablar
hablara
habláramos
hablaras
hablarais
hablara
hablaran
comer
comiera
comiéramos
comieras
comierais
comiera
comieran
vivir
viviera
viviéramos
vivieras
vivierais
viviera
vivieran
A.ALL verbs form the imperfect subjunctive this way, even the most irregular
(but you must know and start with the third person plural of the preterit):
Infin.
Meaning
Preterit
Imperfect subjunctive
decir
to say
dijeron
dijera, dijeras, dijera, dijéramos, dijerais,
dijeran
estar
to be
estuvieron
estuviera, estuvieras, estuviera,
estuviéramos, etc.
hacer
to make,
do
hicieron
hiciera, hicieras, hiciera, hiciéramos,
hicierais, etc.
ir
to go
fueron
fuera, fueras, fuera, fuéramos, fuerais,
fueran
ser
to be
fueron
fuera, fueras, fuera, fuéramos, fuerais,
fueran
tener
to have
tuvieron
tuviera, tuvieras, tuviera, tuviéramos,
tuvierais, etc.
Uses of the imperfect subjunctive. The imperfect subjunctive is used
in the same type of situations in which the present subjunctive is used,
except that the governing verb is typically in a past tense (e.g., the
preterit, imperfect, past perfect, conditional, conditional perfect,
or one of the past subjunctives):
1. Noun clauses. Remember that the subjunctive is used after verbs
of influence, emotion, doubt, and denial.
Contrast the use of the present tense governing verb
plus present subjunctive situation
and that of a past tense governing verb
and the imperfect subjunctive.
Quiero
I want him to do it.
Me
alegro de que él lo
haga. (present
Dudo
subj.)
I'm glad he's doing
it.
Niego
I deny he's doing it.
Es impor
tante
It's important for
him to do it.
I doubt he's doing
it.
Quería
I wanted him to do
it.
Me alegraba
de
I was glad he did it.
Dudaba
Negué
Era
importante
que lo hiciera.
I doubted he'd do it.
(imperf. subj.)
I denied he did it
(was doing it).
It was important for
him to do it.
2. Adverbial
clauses (time, purpose, etc.). Remember that the
subjunctive is used when the action in the adverbial clause is
viewed as anticipated or hypothetical.
Again, contrast the present time and past time situations:
cuando
when they come.
vengan.
We'll do it
(present)
Lo haremos
después que
after they come.
mientras
while they come.
cuando
Lo haríamos
(or: Íbamos a
hacerlo)
despues
que
mientras
when they came.
vinieran
We were going to
(imperfe
do it
ct)
after they came.
while they were
coming.
so they will
come.
para que
Lo
hacemos
sin que
vengan.
(present)
We do
it
con tal
que
provided they
come.
para que
Lo
hicimos
sin que
con tal
que
without them
coming.
so they'd come.
vinieran.
(impefect)
We did
it
without them
coming.
provided they'd
come.
3. Adjectival clauses. Remember that the subjunctive is used
when there is a negated or indefinite antecedent.
Again, contrast the present time and past time situations:
No hay nada aquí que
me guste.
There's nothing here I
like.
No había nada aquí que
me gustara.
There was nothing there
I liked.
Buscamos una criada
que hable español.
We're looking for a maid
who speaks Spanish.
Buscábamos una criada
que hablara español.
We were looking for a
maid who spoke
Spanish.
Descargar

The imperfect subjunctive