Portuguese Pluperfect

Pluperfect of regular verbs in Portuguese. Ela nunca tinha feito uma Caipirinha antes.

Portuguese Pluperfect

How are you guys? Ready for another Dica? Let’s talk about the Portuguese Pluperfect regular verbs. We use the Portuguese Pluperfect when we want to talk about something that happened in the past, before another past.

We have two forms of Portuguese Pluperfect verbs: the simple form and the compound form. The compound form expresses a repetition of an action or its continuity until the moment of speech.The formation of the Portuguese Pluperfect of regular verbs is as follows, in the compound form:

Formation of the Portuguese Pluperfect of regular verbs 

Pluperfect of regular verbs in Portuguese. A formação do pretérito mais-que-perfeito composto é feita pelo uso de: Ter (pretérito imperfeito) + Particípio do Verbo Principal. Exemplo: Eu tinha morado.

As you can see, we will need the verb ter (to have) and a main verb in the past participle. There’s a very simple rule to create the participle. Let’s see:

Past participle of regular verbs in Portuguese

Pluperfect of regular verbs in Portuguese. Particípio dos verbos regulares terminados em -AR é feito utilizando -ADO ao final do verbo. O particípio dos verbos regulares terminados em -ER ou -IR é feito utilizando -IDO ao final do verbo.Now we have everything we need. So let’s see some examples using the Portuguese Pluperfect of regular verbs in the compound form.

Examples with the Portuguese Pluperfect of regular verbs

Vocês já tinham falado com ela sobre a festa? Eu falei com ela há pouco.
You had already spoken to her about the party? I spoke to her not long ago.

Nós já tínhamos vendido o carro quando a Julia decidiu comprá-lo.
We had already sold the car when Julia decided to buy it.

Quando o João chegou, eu já tinha saído.
When João arrived, I had already left.

Ele já tinha comprado um computador quando a loja entrou em promoção.
He had already bought a computer when the store went on sale.

Marta estava decepcionada pois nunca tinha perdido um jogo antes.
Marta was disappointed because she had never lost a game before.

No momento em que cheguei na estação, o trem tinha partido.
The moment I arrived at the station, the train had already left.

Eu já tinha terminado de ler quando acabou a luz.
I had already finished reading when the lights went out.

Você já tinha chegado quando eu te liguei?
Had you already arrived when I called you?

Ela ainda não tinha lido o livro que eu falei.
She had not read the book I told her.

Eles nunca tinham ouvido uma música tão bela. Por isso, estavam emocionados.
They had never listened to such a beautiful song. That’s why they were so moved.

Elas nunca tinham pensado no assunto. Por isso estavam tão indecisas.
They had never thought about the subject. That’s why they were so indecisive.

Formation of the Portuguese Pluperfect’s simple form of regular verbs

Before you leave, let’s see the simple form of the Portuguese Pluperfect tense. The main difference between the simple and the compound forms of the Portuguese Pluperfect tense is that the simple form is more formal than the compound form. Nowadays, it’s possible to notice that the majority of the native speakers of portuguese prefer using the compound form of the Portuguese Pluperfect.

The simple form of the Portuguese Pluperfect was more used in earlier times. For example, when Machado de Assis wrote his stories, circa 1870.

Structure of the pluperfect tense simple form. The formation of the simple form of the pluperfect tense is: eu falara, você falara, ele/ela falara, nós faláramos, vocÊs falaram, eles/elas falaram, eu dissera, você dissera, ele/ela dissera, nós disséramos, vocês disseram, eles/elas disseram, eu rira, você rira, ele/ela rira, nós ríramos, vocês riram, eles/elas riram.

Examples with the Portuguese Pluperfect’s simple form

Ele já estudara a matéria quando o amigo chegou.
He already had studied the subject when the friend arrived. 

Ela chegara às 11:00, pois dormiu tarde.
She had arrived at 11:00 because she slept late.

Quando o João chegou, eu já saíra.
When João arrived, I had already left.

As meninas já comeram quando eu cheguei.
The girls had already eaten when I arrived.

Você já dormira quando ele te ligou?
Had you already slept when he called you?

Vocês já falaram sobre a RioLIVE!? Eu convidei eles ontem.
Had you already spoken about RioLIVE!? I invited them yesterday.

Naquela tarde, eles ouviram um barulho estranho.
That evening, they had heard a strange noise.

Quando o noivo apareceu, a noiva já chegara na igreja.
When the groom appeared, the bride had already arrived at the church.

O marido mentiu para a polícia, mas a esposa dissera a verdade.
The husband lied to the police, but the wife had said the truth.

André comprou um apartamento com o dinheiro do carro que vendera.
André bought an apartment with the money from the car that he had sold.

Let’s practice!

Complete the sentences with the compound form of the Portuguese Pluperfect Tense:

  1. Quando Marcos chegou, Roberto já _____ ____ (partir).
  2. Comprei a passagem com o dinheiro que _____ ____ (guardar).
  3. Eu cheguei atrasado porque _____ ____ tarde ontem (dormir).
  4. Meu dinheiro já _____ ____ (acabar) quando o preço caiu.
  5. No momento que cheguei no ponto, o ônibus já _____ ____ (sair).

Now, complete the following sentences with the simple form of the Portuguese Pluperfect:

  1. Ele _____ (dizer) que o livro era bom.
  2. Quando percebi, a porta já _____ (fechar).
  3. No momento em que Anna saiu, Débora _____ (chegar).
  4. Em toda minha vida, eu nunca _____ (ouvir) nada tão belo.
  5. Você ainda não _____ (escrever) a redação que mandei?

All good? Now you already know how to use and understand the Portuguese Pluperfect.
Some questions for you guys. Have you already studied Portuguese before? Have you already visited Rio de Janeiro in the past? Have you already cleared doubts in Portuguese on our Twitter?
We hope that all your answers have been YES!

We will see you on our next Dica, guys.
Hugs from Rio & Learn!

Ler esta Dica em Português             Leer esta Dica en Español
Click in the links below to see more related Dicas
Perfeito and Imperfeito (Past)
Verbs in -Er in the simple past
Past Perfect and Imperfect in Portuguese
Pretérito Imperfeito in Portuguese
Pretérito Imperfeito with irregular verbs
Simultaneous past in Portuguese


compound form: 

  1. tinha partido
  2. tinha guardado
  3. tinha dormido
  4. tinha acabado
  5. tinha saído   

simple form:

  1. dissera
  2. fechara
  3. chegara
  4. ouvira
  5. escrevera

This post is also available in: English Português (Portuguese) Español (Spanish)

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