Preterite Perfect

Pretérito anterior

The Spanish preterite perfect or past anterior is used to indicate an action in the past that occurred just before another action in the past.

The preterite perfect is very rare in spoken Spanish – it is found almost exclusively in formal writing such as literature. It can only be used after expressions like apenas, cuando, después de que, and tan pronto como, that mean "when" or "as soon as." Its non-literary equivalents are the preterite and pluperfect.

Cuando hubo salido, empecé a llorar.   When he had left, I began to cry.
Después de que hubimos comido, fuimos a la tienda.   After we ate, we went to the store.
Apenas hube terminado cuando él llegó.   I had hardly / just finished when he arrived.

Preterite Perfect Conjugations

The preterite perfect is a compound verb formed with the preterite of the auxiliary verb haber + the past participle of the main verb.

HABLAR
yo hube hablado   nosotros hubimos hablado
hubiste hablado   vosotros hubisteis hablado
él
ella
Ud.
hubo hablado   ellos
ellas
Uds.
hubieron hablado
  
SALIR
yo hube salido   nosotros hubimos salido
hubiste salido   vosotros hubisteis salido
él
ella
Ud.
hubo salido   ellos
ellas
Uds.
hubieron salido

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