Grammar – Past Participles

Past Participles

See also Spanish Grammar

In Spanish, the past participle of a verb can be used as an adjective or can be used with auxiliary verbs to form the passive voice and perfect tenses.

To form the past participle, drop the verb ending and add -ado for -ar verbs or -ido for -er and -ir verbs. For example:

trabajar (to work) – trabajado (worked)
aprender (to learn) – aprendido (learned)
decidir (to decide) – decidido (decided)

If the verb stem ends in a vowel, you will need to add an accent. For example:

caer – caído

Some verbs have irregular past participles:

abrir (to open) – abierto (open)
cubrir (to cover) – cubierto (covered)
decir (to say) – dicho (said)
describir (to describe) – descrito (described)
escribir (to write) – escrito (written)
freír (to fry) – frito (fried)
hacer (to do) – hecho (done)
morir (to die) – muerto (dead)
poner (to put) – puesto (put)
resolver (to resolve) – resuelto (resolved)
romper (to break) – roto (broken)
ver (to see) – visto (seen)
volver (to return) – vuelto (returned)

Compound verbs formed with these irregular verbs are also irregular. For example, the past participle of descomponer is descompuesto.

When used as an adjective, the past participle agrees in gender and number with the noun. For example:

La puerta está abierta.
The door is open.

Sus ojos están cerrados.
Her eyes are closed.

Below are examples of how past participles are used with the passive voice and perfect tenses.

El libro fue escrito por Stephen King. (passive voice)
The book was written by Stephen King.

Ha comido dos manzanas. (present perfect)
I have eaten two apples.

Habían llegado tarde. (past perfect)
They had arrived late.

¿Habrás hablado con ella? (future perfect)
Will you have spoken with her?

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Author: Cacho

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