Double Past Participles

In this lesson, we’ll have a look at particípios passados duplos paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio double past participles. ‘Double’ here means that some verbs can take the form of either a regular or an irregular participle, depending on the auxiliary verb being used with them.
Remember those verbs we marked off with an asterisk in the Irregular Participles learning note? They were ganhar paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio to win, to earn, gastar paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio to spend, and pagar paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio to pay. These are verbs that have double participles. Let’s see them in action:

Ganhar

Eles deviam ter ganhado o campeonato. paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio They should have won the championship.
O campeonato foi ganho pela outra equipa. paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio The championship was won by the other team.

Gastar


O presidente disse ter gastado muito tempo com os relatórios. paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio The president said he had spent too much time on the reports.
Foi gasto muito tempo com os relatórios. paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio Too much time was spent on the reports.

Pagar

Os meus patrões têm pagado bem! Play normal audio My bosses have paid me well!
Sou bem paga pelos meus patrões! paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio I am paid well by my bosses!

When do you use regular participles?

Notice that the sentences above which use ter paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio to have as the auxiliary verb, employ regular participles, formed by adding ‘-ado‘ to the root of the main -AR verb. Ganhar becomes ter ganhado paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio to have won.  Gastar becomes ter gastado paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio to have spent. Pagar becomes ter pagado paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio to have paid. The other, less common auxiliary verb that also uses regular past participles is haver paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio to have, to exist.
Eles haviam ganhado o torneio. paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio They had won the tournament.

When do you use irregular participles?

In contrast, the sentences above which use other auxiliary verbs – in this case, the verb ser paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio to be - permanent – use irregular participles. Ganhar becomes ser ganho paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio to be won. Gastar becomes ser gasto paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio to be spent. Pagar becomes ser pago paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio to be paid. Another example of an auxiliary verb that uses irregular past participles is estar paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio to be - temporary.
O torneio está ganho. paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio The tournament is won.
Which verbs have double participles? Much like irregular verbs, there is no pattern or rule for knowing which verbs have double participles – you have to learn them one by one. You can find a few of the most common ones in the following table:

Main Verb Regular Participle Irregular Participle
absorver paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio to absorb absorvido paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio absorbed absorto paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio absorbed
aceitar paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio to accept aceitado paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio accepted aceite paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio accepted
agradecer paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio to thank agradecido paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio thankful grato paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio thankful
completar paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio to complete completado paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio completed, complete completo paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio completed, complete
entregar paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio to deliver entregado paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio delivered entregue paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio delivered
enxugar paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio to dry enxugado paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio dried, dry enxuto paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio dried, dry
fixar paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio to fix(in place) fixado paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio fixed(in place) fixo paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio fixed(in place)
ganhar paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio to win ganhado paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio won ganho paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio won
gastar paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio to spend gastado paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio spent gasto paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio spent
imprimir paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio to print imprimido paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio printed impresso paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio printed
pagar paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio to pay pagado paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio paid pago paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio paid
limpar paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio to clean limpado paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio cleaned, clean limpo paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio cleaned, clean
matar paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio to kill matado paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio killed morto paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio killed, dead
sujar paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio to dirty sujado paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio dirtied, dirty sujo paused audio playing audio Play slow audio Play normal audio dirtied, dirty

Double the Participles, Double the Trouble

The problem with double participles is that not even native, well-educated Portuguese speakers can always agree on the rules governing the use of double participles. In fact, certain grammatically incorrect forms are widely used. The verbs pagar and ganhar are prime examples of this phenomenon. You may often hear the incorrect forms “ter pago” and “ter ganho”, despite the correct forms being “ter pagado” and “ter ganhado”.
Past participles in Portuguese require a bit more effort to learn, but with a bit of study and practice you’ll soon have all the exceptions memorised. And if someone tries to tell you “ter ganho” is correct, point them towards this lesson! 😉

Comments

    • Na prática, grato/agradecido foge um pouco à regra… Há sempre exceções 🙂 Com o verbo ser, eu diria que soa melhor dizer grato. Mas com outros verbos, é comum as pessoas usarem os dois particípios (grato/agradecido) indiscriminadamente. Por exemplo:
      – Estou muito grato pela atenção = Estou muito agradecido pela atenção.
      – Fico-lhe grato pela ajuda = Fico-lhe agradecido pela ajuda.

  • Tenho uma dúvida sobre aceitar. O partícipio irregular deve ser aceito ou aceite? Já tenho visto os dois.

    • Na língua portuguesa em geral, as seguintes três formas são consideradas corretas: aceite, aceito, aceita. Falando especificamente do português europeu, temos uma forte preferência por “aceite”. No português do Brasil, “aceito” e “aceita” são usados com mais frequência.

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