with the avoir construction of the past, (he has reached, they have brought etc.) i feel like most of the time the past participle is just in the standard form whereas in this case it has to have an e added to match the the subject of the sentence 'Elle' Or does the avoir construction always have to match the past participle in number and gender. Or is that what's happening here? I guess the 'atteinte' could be matching the direct object 'me' if the speaker here was female. What about this sentence here: 'Elle a coupé la pomme avec un couteau.' Both the subject and the object there are feminine yet the 'coupe' is not.
This is the rule:
With the auxiliary "avoir", the past participle remains invariable: elle a atteint (passé composé), nous avions atteint (plus-que-parfait), ils auront atteint (futur antérieur).
Exception: when the direct object is placed in front of the verb, the past participle agrees with that object in gender and number: elle l'a atteinte (fem sing), nous les avions atteints (masc plur), ils les auront atteintes (fem plur).
The difficulty here is that "l'" and "les" can be masculine or feminine. So, a bunch of other examples, with a relative clause:
- la pomme qu'elle a mangée (fem sing)
- le vin qu'ils ont bu (masc sing)
- les pommes qu'ils ont mangées (fem plur)
- les légumes que nous avons mangés (masc plur)
I was translating English transcriptions of Michel Thomas's French Advanced course, and I thought about this latter rule: The past participle must agree with the D.O, when the D.O. precedes the verb.
Thomas said that pronouns always precede the verb, in the past tense. Must then the past participle always agree with me/te/le/la/nous/vous/les, in the past tense?
If my assumption is correct, then I suppose this translation is correct as well: "Pourquoi ne les avez-vous pas vendus?"
Two questions: 1. What's the difference between this word "reach" and the word "wait"? Just from hearing the pronunciation, they seem quite similar 2. What context does this sentence suit? Like, she reached me physically? Or, get in touch with me (by emails/phone calls)? I think I am having difficulty in making sense of this sentence.
Thank you, Duo fellows. <3
"to reach" = atteindre
"to wait" = attendre
In compound past: elle m'a atteinte (reached) vs elle m'a attendue (waited). To clearly hear the difference, please enter these words in forvo.com or even Google Translate.
"atteindre" can mean "reach" in the physical or figurative sense
- the show reaches its target = l'émission atteint son audience;
- to reach one's goal = atteindre son but;
- to reach a high level = atteindre un haut niveau.
You can use forvo to listen to the difference between the nasal sounds "in" and "an":
However, grammatically speaking "attend" is impossible in this sentence:
- She has reached me = Elle m'a atteinte
- She has waited for me = Elle m'a attendue