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PECULIAR USE OF AVOIR*.
The peculiar use of AVOIR, in speaking of age, cold, heat, warmth, hunger, thirst, has already been noticed at p. 134-1 and 324 but, as this use embraces a great number of phrases constantly occurring in every day's conversation, it appears useful to introduce an exercise here for the especial purpose of illustrating it. Ex.
Are you not hungry?-I am very thirsty.-That child is cold.-Put on a great coat, or you will be cold.-Her hands and feet are very warm.-Does your head ache?— How warm you are!-Do you know what is her age? She will be twelve next Monday.-I thought you were twenty. No, I shall not be twenty before the twentieth of March.— 46-10
I could not eat, I was not hungry.-Are your feet warm? -He complains that his back is cold.-How long has he se plaindre de
had (a bad) leg.-She has bad eyes.-Will he not be cold
if he travels outside.-My head is cold, there must be y falloir que a draught in this room.-I was only nineteen when I visited courant d'air
aller Rome. What was his age when he was appointed to the
command of the army of Italy? Bonaparte was about six
The peculiarities of être are referred to the Supplement at page 124, but they will be found at page 326 of the Grammar.
and twenty then.-How long have you had this headache?
My head has been aching (for these two days).-Will you voilà deux jours que 2
allow me to ask for a glass of table beer? I am very thirsty. petite bière?
Nothing could quench the thirst I felt.-Here, put on these
poor man must be very hungry, after eight hours hard work.
d'un travail dur.
—Let her drink water if she is thirsty, beer is not good
OF FRENCH AUXILIARY VERBS.
Grammarians have all been agreed to admit only two auxiliary verbs, étre and avoir (to be and to have), which are used, in the conjugation of verbs, to form those tenses serving to express, in a more defined and precise way, the time at which an action has taken place. But, independently of these two verbs, (étre and avoir,) there are four, which, from their frequent connexion with other verbs, also deserve the name of auxiliaries. These verbs are venir,
aller, devoir, and pouvoir. The difference is, however, that étre and avoir are always joined to a participle past; whereas these are joined with an infinitive. The way in which they are used in French is also so peculiar, that, for that alone, they deserve special notice, although some remarks have already been introduced on some of them at pp. 154. 198.
VENIR DE, to have just.
It is used, in that sense, in the present tense, and in the imperfect. Ex.
Je viens de rentrer ;
Nous venons de le voir;
I have just returned home. we have just seen him.
Son père venait de mourir lors-
her father had not long died
You have just heard him, what have you to say?— Have
I not just now told you that he is gone to town?—No wine,
thank brother. I had not long since entered the army, when war
you; I have just drank a few glasses with your en boire quelques
broke out between France and England.-We had just éclater
gone out, when you called.-You
are too late, she is
My daughters had not long begun music, and
partir. were making some progress, when the death of their father, and the loss of our fortune, compelled me to interrupt their
studies. What is the time? The clock has just struck heure?
three. trois heures.
Is used in the present and the imperfect; in both cases to express that an action is or was going to take place. Ex.
Attendez, je vais vous montrer mes fleurs;
Je vais vous l'expliquer; un peu de patience, s'il vous plaît ;
wait a little, I will show you my flowers.
I am going to, or will*, explain it to you; have a little patience, if you please.
In English, these two forms may indifferently be used, but not so in French; je montrerai, j'expliquerai, may not be used in reference to an action which is going to take place immediately.
Nous allions nous mettre à table, quand elle est arrivée;
J'allais me tromper de porte, mais un de vos voisins m'indiqua votre maison.
we were going to sit down, (we were about to sit down,) when she came in.
I was on the point of knocking at the wrong door, but one of your neighbours showed me your house.
Take care, she will get in a passion.-They say she is se fácher.
about marrying a foreign officer.-Give it me, and I will
sign instantly. The play will begin presently, we have no à l'instant,
time to lose. He got out of his depth, and was near being
drowned, when we
wish to see him,
se jetter à la nage
after him.-If you
make haste, for he will go out directly.— se dépécher,
The news of the peace
were going to give orders
to engage the combat.-She de commencer
was on the point of telling him all our secrets, but I stopped
her in time. The service is about to begin, let us go in..
to retire for the night; but they nevertheless received us se retirer
kindly, and sat up with us until we had finished
Is used in the present, the imperfect, the preterite, the conditional, and the conditional compound. The sense in which it is used is not the same in each of these tenses.
The Present,-je dois,
Implies probability or supposition that a thing is, or obligation, that it should be, and is also a sort of future. Ex. you must be hungry, (I sup
Vous devez avoir bon appétit, après une promenade aussi longue;
Elle doit étre bien heureuse de se retrouver auprès de sa famille ;
Je dois diner chez lui aujourd'hui; Vous ne devez pas me répondre ainsi :
pose you are hungry), after so long a walk. she must be so happy, I should think she is happy, to be again united to her family. I am to dine with him to-day. you are not to answer me in this way.
Come, sit down and rest yourself, for I
must be tired.-Must I write to my father
leave? We are all of us to go and spend a week in the
country? Are we to submit to such treatment.- How much
that man must regret his imprudence, and his extravagance!
It appears to me that young people are not to judge the sembler
motives of their elders.
ceux qui sont d'un áge avancé.
The Imperfect,-je devais,
Implies that a thing was expected, but did not happen. Ex.
Nous devions faire le voyage ensemble, mais des circonstances imprévues nous en ont empéchés ;
we were to have gone together, but unexpected circumstances prevented us.