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French grammar - A few irregular imparfait conjugations

A few irregular imparfait conjugations

There are a couple of expectations to the general rule for forming l'imparfait:

For verbs that end in -cer - for example lancer - the present tense for nous is lançons. The imparfait is therefore based on the lanç- root as per normal except nous lancions and vous lanciez which loose the circumflex.

For verbs that end in -ger - for example manger - the present tense for nous is mangeons. The imparfait is therefore based on the mange- root as per normal except nous mangions and vous mangiez which loose the e.

The verb falloir which is only used impersonally in the expression il faut ('it is necessary') is fallait in the imparfait.

The verb pleuvoir ('to rain') which only used impersonally in the expression il pleut ('it rains' or 'it is raining') is pleuvait in the imparfait.

Examples:
La route était bloquée et nous avancions donc très lentement.
The road was blocked and we so were moving very slowly.

-cer verb so for nous & vous use irregular root avanc- without the circumflex nous avancions

avancer means 'to advance'

donc means 'so'

Les chars avançaient rapidement à travers la campagne.
The tanks were advancing rapidly through the countryside.

-cer verb but not nous or vous so use regular root avanç- ils avançaient

char (m) means 'tank (military)'

à travers means 'through' or 'across'

Elle menaçait de le dénoncer à la police.
She threatened to report him to the police.

-cer verb but not nous or vous so use regular root menaç- elle menaçait

menacer (verb) means 'to threaten'

dénoncer (verb) means 'to denounce' or 'to report to a authority'

Pourquoi menaciez-vous de le virer ?
Why were you threatening to fire him?

-cer verb so for nous & vous use irregular root menac- without the circumflex vous menaciez

Nous mangions du pain et du beurre à chaque repas.
We ate bread and butter with every meal.

-ger verb so for nous & vous use irregular root mang- without the e nous mangions

Je mangeais du pop-corn et regardais un film.
I was eating popcorn and watching a movie.

-ger verb but not nous or vous so use regular root mange- je mangeais

Il fallait faire un détour.
It was necessary to take a detour.

détour (m) means 'detour'

Il nous fallait améliorer la qualité du travail.
We needed to improve the quality of work.

améliorer (verb) means 'to improve'

Il me fallait porter un parapluie partout.
I had to carry an umbrella everywhere.
Il pleut maintenant.
It is raining now.

Present tense use of pleuvoir - il pleut

Il pleuvait hier matin.
It was raining in the morning yesterday.

Imparfait use of pleuvoir - il pleuvait

Il pleuvait des cordes pendant le match.
It was raining heavily during the game.

pleuvoir des cordes (verb) means 'to rain heavily' or 'to rain cats and dogs'

corde (f) means 'rope' or 'string'

Je savais qu'il pleuvait, alors j'ai mis un imperméable.
I knew that it was raining so I put on a raincoat.

imperméable (m) means 'raincoat' or (adj) 'waterproof'