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French grammar - Passé composé - agreement of the past participle

Passé composé - agreement of the past participle

For sentences that take avoir in the passé composé the past participle should agree in gender and number if a direct object comes before the avoir + past participle pair.

This direct object can take three possible forms: ,

A direct object pronoun (me, te, le, la, nous, vous, les).

The subordinate clauses with relative pronoun que.

A noun placed before the verb (usually in questions and exclamations).

This rule doesn't apply to indirect (dative) object pronouns.

For agreement, past participles change in the same way that regular adjectives change:

Masculine singular - unchanged

Feminine singular - add -e

Masculine plural - add -s

Feminine plural - add -es

Exceptions: There is no direct object agreement with the causative or passive.

The example comments explain all this in detail.

Examples:
Il a vu ce film et elle l'a vu aussi.
He saw this movie and she saw it too.

The direct object pronoun l' comes before a vu so vu should agree with the The direct object pronoun l' before a vu so vu should agree with the subject le film

masculine vu for agreement.

Il a vu la montagne et elle l'a vue aussi.
He saw the mountain and she saw it too.

The direct object pronoun l' comes before a vu so vu should agree with the subject la montagne

la montagne (f) so feminine vue for agreement.

Il a vu les oiseaux et elle les a vus aussi.
He saw the birds and she saw them too.

The direct object pronoun les comes before a vu so vu should agree with the subject les oiseaux

les oiseaux (m.pl) so masculine plural vus for agreement.

Il a vu ses sœurs et elle les a vues aussi.
He saw his sisters and she saw them too.

The direct object pronoun les comes before a vu so vu should agree with the subject ses sœurs

ses sœurs (f.pl so feminine plural vues for agreement.

Avez-vous regardé la nouvelle pièce de Molière ? - Oui, je l'ai regardée.
Have you seen Molière's new play? - Yes, I saw at it.

The direct object la pièce of the verb as regardé is placed after the verb, therefore there's no agreement. But the pronoun l' is before the verb ai regardee so agreemnt required.

Je suis un homme et il m'a emmené au foot.
I am a man and he took me to football.

Direct object m' before the passé composé verb so agreement required

emmener (verb) means 'to take (someone somewhere)' or 'to transport'

Je suis une femme et il m'a emmenée au parc.
I am a woman and he took me to the park.

Direct object m' before the passé composé verb so agreement required.

Nous sommes des hommes et il nous a emmenés au pub.
We are men and he took us to the pub.

Direct object nous before the passé composé verb so agreement required.

Nous sommes des femmes et il nous a emmenées dans les magasins.
We are women and he took us to the shops.

Direct object nous before the passé composé verb so agreement required.

Et la télé ? - Il l'a regardée.
And the TV? - He watched it.

Agreement required: la télé (f) so regardé regardée

Et les bonbons ? - Elle les a mangés.
And the sweets? - She ate them.

Agreement required: les bonbons (m.pl) so mangé mangés

Et les pompiers, tu les as vus ?
And the firefighters, have you seen them?

Agreement required: les pompiers (m.pl) so vu vus

Ces statues... Tu les as faites ?
These statues... Did you make them?

Agreement required: ces statues (f.pl) so fait faites

A-t-il vu Marie ? Il l'a vue.
Has he seen Mary. He saw her.

vu vue (feminine singular)

Elle a acheté des livres. Elle les a achetés.
She bought books. She bought them.

acheté achetés (masculine plural)

Tu as perdu les clés. Tu les as perdues.
You have lost the keys. You lost them.

perdu perdues (feminine plural)

Voici les livres qu'il m'a donnés.
Here are the books he gave me.

The relative pronoun que (which repeats les livres (m.pl) in the subordinate clause) is before the verb a donné so there should be agreement.

Les fleurs que j'ai senties.
The flowers that I smelled.

The relative pronoun que (which repeats les fleurs (f.pl) in the subordinate clause) is before the verb ai senti so there should be agreement.

J'aime les fraises que Maman a cueillies.
I like the strawberries Mom picked.

The relative pronoun que (which repeats les fraises (f.pl) in the subordinate clause) is before the verb a cueilli so there should be agreement.

J'ai rencontré les actrices que j'ai appréciées.
I met the actresses that I liked.

apprécié appréciées (feminine plural)

apprécier (verb) means 'to appreciate' or 'to admire'

Les photos que tu as prises sont toutes floues.
The pictures you took are all blurry.

pris prises (feminine plural)

flou (m) means 'blurry' or 'blurred'

As-tu lu les livres que j'ai achetés ?
Have you read the books I bought?

acheté achetés (maculine plural)

Voilà la voiture qu'Amine a vendue.
This is the car that Amine sold.

vendu vendue (feminine singular)

Est-ce que Jean a trouvé ses livres ? Oui, enfin il les a trouvés.
Has Jean found his books? Yes, finally he found them.

trouvé trouvés (masculine plural)

As-tu lavé les chaises ? Lesquelles ? Celles que tu as laissées dans le jardin.
Did you wash the chairs? Which ones? The ones you left in the garden.

laissé laissées (feminine plural)

Quelle revue Muriel a-t-elle achetée ?
What magazine did Muriel buy?

Noun la revue before the verb a acheté in this question so agreement required

revue (f) means 'magazine'

Elle a emmené les enfants à l'école.
She took the children to school.

Noun les enfants after the verb a emmené so no agreement required

Il les a fait travailler.
He made them work.

Causative verbs like faire travailler (to make work) do not require past participle agreement

L'histoire que j'ai entendu lire.
The story that I heard read.

The entendre lire is a passive contruction so not agreement