Agreement of past participles

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Elles sont entrées dans le resto.

Sometimes, the past participle remains invariable (masculine and singular), sometimes it agrees with another word in the sentences. Look at the same verb MANGER in these 2 examples:

J’ai mangé les pommes AND Je les ai mangées

The past participle may or may not agree in gender (add an E if feminine) and number (add an S if plural).

  • Verbs that take AVOIR agree – or not – with the object
  • Verbs that take ÊTRE agree – or not – with the object pronoun that reflects the subject

Here is how it goes:

Verbs that take AVOIR (goes with the object)

1. Verbs that take AVOIR do not agree if the object is after the verb.

J’ai mangé les pommes. --> no agreement with object because les pommes is after the verb

Verbs that take ÊTRE (goes with the object pronoun)

2. Intransitive[2] verbs that take ÊTRE agree with the pronoun.

Elles se sont lavées. --> agreement with pronoun se=elles because se laver doesn’t have another object. The action is done to self


I get into a lot more detail here


Related: le passé composé 

3 comments to Agreement of past participles

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  • Herman Roeffen

    Bonjour Anne,

    Merci pour votre réponse de quelle est claire ! Oh la la Herman,it seems you start understanding the subject.

    By the way Anne,allow me to mention that ABOVE in your explanation text :Here it how goes!!! YOU FORGOT THE PREPOSITION IT.

    Ofcourse you want to be Perfect,that’s why this remark.

    Merci beaucoup, avec salutations de Venlo Pays-Bas ,ville frontière avec

    Yours. Herman

  • Herman Roeffen

    Sorry Anne,


    In my view. Your sentence must be. HERE IT IS HOW IT GOES!!!

    Indeed a sentence without a verb is no sentence! Or shall I say has no

    Backbone? Never mind Anne.Thank you very much for your fine work .

    Bye bye.




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