How to use the Past Historic in French – Walk Talk and Learn French Episode 5

The Past Historic (in French passé simple) is a special tense used mostly in written French to relate narrative events in the past. In this episode of Walk, Talk and Learn, Mark spots an example of the Past Historic on a film poster, and he explains the full conjugation of the Past Historic of regular verbs, and of the common verb être.

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Meet Liane, Coffee Break Spanish learner

Tell us who you are, where you live, your nationality and how long you’ve been learning a language with us.

I’m Liane from Australia . I’ve been following Coffee Break Spanish for about 3 years.

Which language or languages are you learning with Coffee Break?


What experience have you had speaking and learning other languages?

At the moment I am walking the Camino de Santiago in Spain. I am enjoying trying to communicate with the wonderful Spanish people and during the walk I’m listening to Coffee Break Spanish podcasts!!

What are your favourite memories of learning a language?

It is really wonderful when I can understand people and then get my message across. The best situations are where they don’t speak any English at all and we have to fumble through with my very bad Spanish, but it is fun and they are very grateful for my efforts! In the Camino we stay we have to organise our bags and getting food etc. great opportunities to speak Spanish!!

Where would your ideal coffee break be, and with whom?

Speaking with hairdressers, staff in restaurants and accommodation places.

What’s the best language-learning tip you have found works for you?

Don’t listen to slow Spanish, listen at the normal speed because that’s how people talk! Also, don’t try to understand every word, just get the general idea. And finally and most importantly, don’t be afraid to talk!! Just talk! You will make mistakes but it’s okay!!! I love listening to and reading stories at my level.

Quick Fire Round

Your favourite language: Spanish
• Your favourite word or phrase in the language: Zanahoria
• Do you have a favourite film, TV show, book or singer in the language? Short stories for beginners in Spanish
• Your favourite destination to practise your language: Spain

Please finish off with a message to your fellow members of the Coffee Break community and the Coffee Break Team.

Never give up! Learning a new language can take a lifetime and that’s okay. Enjoy the journey!