Italian Essentials: Congiuntivo Trapassato (Pluperfect)

We're at the end of subjunctive week. We've already figured out exactly what the subjunctive mood is, and how it is used. And we've looked at using the subjunctive in Italian with il congiuntivo presente, il congiuntivo imperfetto, and il congiuntivo passato. Today, we're going to finish off with il congiuntivo trapassato.

Il congiuntivo trapassato

Similar to yesterday's past perfect subjunctive, the congiuntivo trapassato, or pluperfect, is formed by applying the subjunctive to the passato prossimo. The only difference from yesterday is that today, the verb avere or essere will have been conjugated according to the congiuntivo imperfetto, or imperfective subjunctive:

 avereessere
ioavessifossi
tuavessifossi
lui/leiavessefosse
noiavessimofossimo
voiavestefoste
loroavesserofossero

So, pretty simple. Once again, just apply what you've just learned about il congiuntivo imperfetto to what you already know about il passato prossimo.

Examples

capire
Speravo che avessero capito.
raccontare
Vorrebbero che io raccontassi una storia.
potare
Non era giusto che lei non avvese potuto completare il corso.
sapere
Se avessi saputo che lei non era qui avrei aspettato.

And that's it! You now know everything you need to know to start using the subjunctive mood in Italian. Of course it's still going to take some practice...


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