Après que + L'Indicatif = After + verb

It is worth noting that après que (after...) is followed by tenses in the  Mode indicatif and NOT in  Mode subjonctif!

The reason is very simple: après que introduces an action that happened for certain and therefore requires the Mode indicatif. The Mode subjonctif, on the other hand, is the mood of doubt and uncertainty.

 

(1) 

When the main verb is in  Passé composéaprès que is followed by  Passé composé (after I did) or Plus-que-parfait (after I had done) because it expresses a fact that happened BEFORE the moment it is being reported. The choice between the two tenses depends on how far apart the two actions are; Plus-que-parfait marks a longer gap.

Après que vous avez visité la ville, vous êtes allés boire un verre.
After you visited the city, you went and had a drink.

Après que j'ai vu ce film, j'étais bouleversé.
After I saw that film, I was overwhelmed.

Il a laissé sa voiture au garage après qu'elle était allée à la banque.
He dropped her car off at the garage after she had gone to the bank.

 

(2)

When the main verb is in Présent indicatif, après que is followed by Présent indicatif to express a habit (after they come, they [usually] do that) or by Passé composé when the action happens BEFORE the moment it is being reported (He goes after I've done it./He's going after I did it.).

Après qu’ils sont arrivés, ils vont saluer ma mère.
After they've arrived, they go and say hello to my mother.

Tout le monde part après qu'elle sonne la cloche.
Everyone leaves after she rings the bell.

Je me lave après que tu te lèves.
I wash after you get up.

 

For other cases, see Quand, lorsque, après que, une fois que + Le Futur Antérieur = 'when, after I've done in the future  

 

Note that many French people make the mistake of using Le Subjonctif instead of L'Indicatif after après que!

 

Note that avant que (i.e. before...) IS followed by Le Subjonctif because of the uncertainty of this action.

See Avant que + ne explétif + Le Subjonctif = Before I do

 

Learn more about these related French grammar topics

Examples and resources

Après qu’ils sont arrivés, ils vont saluer ma mère.
After they've arrived, they go and say hello to my mother.


Après que j'ai vu ce film, j'étais bouleversé.
After I saw that film, I was overwhelmed.


Tout le monde part après qu'elle sonne la cloche.
Everyone leaves after she rings the bell.


Après que vous avez visité la ville, vous êtes allés boire un verre.
After you visited the city, you went and had a drink.


Je me lave après que tu te lèves.
I wash after you get up.


Il a laissé sa voiture au garage après qu'elle était allée à la banque.
He dropped her car off at the garage after she had gone to the bank.


Nous avons rattrapé notre travail après que nous avons été absents.
We caught up on our work after we were absent.


Q&A Forum 12 questions, 31 answers

RenitaB2Kwiziq community member

Après que + L'Indicatif = After + verb : What's the difference between après And après que?

Asked 3 months ago
ChrisC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor Correct answer

Après (without que) is usually followed by a noun or an infinitive, but not a subject. With the addition of que, you can have a different subject in the après-clause than the main clause.

Après le dîner je vais aller me coucher. -- After dinner, I am going going to bed. (Same subject between the two clauses -- je)
Après avoir fini le dîner, je vais aller me coucher. -- After having finished dinner, I'll go to bed. (Again, je is the common subject of the two clauses.)
Tu vas aller te coucher après que nous avons fini le dîner. -- You'll go to bed after we have finished dinner. (Here the subject between the main clause -- tu -- is different from the one in the subordinate clause -- nous).

Après que + L'Indicatif = After + verb : What's the difference between après And après que?

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William C1Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

Passé Simple Indicatif ou pas?

Is "tu réussis" acceptable here? The present tense and simple past are the same with "tu réussis" !

Asked 7 months ago
CécileKwiziq team memberCorrect answer

Hi William,

Normally you should not use the subjunctive after 'après que' ( although this is one mistake made by the French all the time) so I think this is what the quiz is testing.

in French you won't use the present as in English so the only possible answer is the first one 'tu as réussi' ( passé composé). The second example is in the past subjunctive, the third in the imperfect subjunctive.

Take a look at the following Kwiziq lesson for more examples -

https://french.kwiziq.com/revision/grammar/how-to-use-apres-que-lindicatif-to-express-after-plus-verb

Hope this helps!

 

CécileKwiziq team member

Hi William,

 I am not sure which example you are referring to , but I can confirm that,  'Tu réussis' is the same in the second personal singular form of the présent and passé simple...

William C1Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

The question was How would you say ''I was relieved after you passed your exam.'' ?


The answers were.


J'étais soulagée après que tu as réussi ton exam.

J'étais soulagée après que tu aies réussi ton exam.

J'étais soulagée après que tu réussisses ton exam.

J'étais soulagée après que tu réussis ton exam.


I chose the last answer but was marked wrong. However Tú réussis is also the simple past, an indicative tense

William C1Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

I did not chose a subjunctive tense. I chose "tu réussis". I accept it is the present tense but it is also the simple past. Surely both "tu réussis" (you chose - simple past) and "tu as réussi" (You have chosen - conversational past) are correct.

CécileKwiziq team member

Hi William,

The present indicative is not possible in French but you could say :

Je fus soulagée après que tu réussis ton examen 

Both in the past historic but you wouldn't say this as it sounds very precious...

William C1Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

Merci, je comprends maintenant !

Passé Simple Indicatif ou pas?

Is "tu réussis" acceptable here? The present tense and simple past are the same with "tu réussis" !

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TracyC1Kwiziq community member

I was just wondering why a box always appears right across the lesson

Every time I’m trying to work through a lesson a box appears with some useless message right across the page which hinders my learning.

Is there a reason for this?

Asked 9 months ago
GruffKwiziq team member

Hi Tracy - what was the message inside the box?

TracyC1Kwiziq community member

Several messages such as

Hope you’re having a nice day 

Clever stuff coming up

That kind of thing 

GruffKwiziq team member

Sounds like a bug. Thanks for letting us know.

TracyC1Kwiziq community member

Ok thanks for looking into it. 

I was just wondering why a box always appears right across the lesson

Every time I’m trying to work through a lesson a box appears with some useless message right across the page which hinders my learning.

Is there a reason for this?

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IanC1Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

Would it be correct to say "Je suis retourné me coucher après que tu partis"? I'm confused re when to use passé composé versus passé simple.

Asked 1 year ago
ChrisC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor Correct answer

Don't fret about passé simple. It is never used unless you're writing literary French. Did you mean another tense? Maybe plus-que-parfait?

You use the plus-que-parfait if you want to stress that the two actions are temporally farther apart. Either one is correct, but the choice depends on the temporal relationship between the two actions.

Je suis retourné me coucher après que tu es parti. -- I went back to sleep after you left.
Je suis retourné me coucher après que tu étais parti. -- I went back to sleep after you had left. (This doesn't quite work for me in English, though).

P.S.: In my first post there slipped an extraneous "s" into "partis" that shouldn't be there.

ChrisC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor
Je suis retourné me coucher après que tu es partis. --
I went back to sleep after you left.

You need the passé composé.

IanC1Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor
Thanks Chris.  I understand the rule, but I don't have a clear understanding of when to use passé composé and when to use passé simple.
IanC1Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor
Thanks Chris, that's really helpful!
ChrisC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor
You're welcome!

Would it be correct to say "Je suis retourné me coucher après que tu partis"? I'm confused re when to use passé composé versus passé simple.

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DonaldC1Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

Je suis retourné me coucher après que tu es parti.

Il faut que je rie.  J'ai écrit <je suis retourné me coucher après que tu t'en es allé.  Bien sûr, cela avait tort. Je comprends que j'aurais dû écrire la reponse différemment comme vous l'avez fait.  Mais avais-je raison.  J'ai tenu les deux phrases dans le temps correcte, je le crois.  Qu'est-ce que vous en pensez?  Évidement, je joue avec cette phrase.  Je m'en suis amusé.  Don
Asked 1 year ago
CécileKwiziq team memberCorrect answer

Bonjour Donald,

In my opinion 'après que tu t'en es allé ' although correct, sounds clumsy .

You could say 'après ton départ' of course but that was not the point of the lesson I expect.

Bonne continuation!

ChrisC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

Hi Donald, 

your version seems correct to me. 

-- Chris. 

NinoC1Kwiziq community member
Après que tu t'en es allé, en tout cas, non?
CécileKwiziq team member
yes Nino of course, will correct ...
NinoC1Kwiziq community member
:-)

Je suis retourné me coucher après que tu es parti.

Il faut que je rie.  J'ai écrit <je suis retourné me coucher après que tu t'en es allé.  Bien sûr, cela avait tort. Je comprends que j'aurais dû écrire la reponse différemment comme vous l'avez fait.  Mais avais-je raison.  J'ai tenu les deux phrases dans le temps correcte, je le crois.  Qu'est-ce que vous en pensez?  Évidement, je joue avec cette phrase.  Je m'en suis amusé.  Don

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AnnC1Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

for after you left, I used sortir but the answer only allows partir. Should this be changed?

Asked 1 year ago
ChrisC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor Correct answer

Hi Ann, "sortir" is more "to go out" than "to leave". Of course, in order to go out, one has to leave home but partir is the proper choice of verb, in my opinion.

-- Chris (not a native speaker).

AnnC1Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor
D'accord

for after you left, I used sortir but the answer only allows partir. Should this be changed?

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PaulC1Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

j'étais bouleversé

Hi, Is there a lesson on when to use a past participle as an adjective? Thanks.
Asked 1 year ago
ChrisC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

Hi Paul,

I don't think there's a whole lot of difference between English and French on this point.

J'étais bouleversé. -- I was shaken. (shaken is the participle of to shake)

-- Chris (not a native speaker).

j'étais bouleversé

Hi, Is there a lesson on when to use a past participle as an adjective? Thanks.

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EmilyC1Kwiziq community member

"Apres" without "que"

Sorry, it appears the "more detail" part didn't post! I was wondering under what circumstances you could omit "que" and still use "apres." "Je me lave apres tu te leves" sounds wrong, or at least awkward, but what about "Tu te leves, et apres, je me lave?"
Asked 1 year ago
ChrisC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor

See my response to your previous post. -- Chris.

"Apres" without "que"

Sorry, it appears the "more detail" part didn't post! I was wondering under what circumstances you could omit "que" and still use "apres." "Je me lave apres tu te leves" sounds wrong, or at least awkward, but what about "Tu te leves, et apres, je me lave?"

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EmilyC1Kwiziq community member

Omitting "que"

Asked 1 year ago
ChrisC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor Correct answer

The rule is that you need que if what follows is a complete subordinate clause with its own subject and verb. Otherwise you omit que.

Je vais ranger ma chambre après avoir fait mes devoirs. -- I will tidy my room after having done my homework.
Je vais ranger ma chambre après que j'aurai fait mes devoirs. -- I will tidy my room after I will have made my homework.

In the first case you don't have a clause following après, just an infitif passé (avoir fait), hence no que. The second example sports a complete subordinate clause and therefore requires que.

-- Chris (not a native speaker).

Omitting "que"

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William C1Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

Après que + l'indicatif

Just a thought. After “ Après que“, you use an indicative tense. Since the 1st, 2nd and 3rd person singular for “réussir“ is the same for both the present tense and the simple past tense. These two tenses are both indicative tenses, one present tense and the other past tense. Could “J'étais soulagée après que tu réussis ton exam“ also be considered a correct answer in this example?
Asked 2 years ago
CécileKwiziq team memberCorrect answer

Hi William ,

It would be -

"J'étais soulagé après que tu as réussi (eu) ton examen"

RonC1 Kwiziq Q&A super contributor
Bonjour William, Here is a simple translation of the phrase in question: I was relieved after you pass your test. As can be seen in the translation, the sense of the phrase has changed completely. Alors, en ce qui concerne la verbe réussir la conjugaison est comme ce qui suit: je réussis tu réussis il réussit Parce que ils ne sont pas la même, ce qui suit est plus exact: J’ai été soulagé après que le succès que tu avais sur ton examen. J'imagine que Aurèlie ou Laura aient une réponse qui serait différent. J'espère que cela vous aidera. Bonne chance ! Ron

Après que + l'indicatif

Just a thought. After “ Après que“, you use an indicative tense. Since the 1st, 2nd and 3rd person singular for “réussir“ is the same for both the present tense and the simple past tense. These two tenses are both indicative tenses, one present tense and the other past tense. Could “J'étais soulagée après que tu réussis ton exam“ also be considered a correct answer in this example?

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DoraidaC1Kwiziq community member

Après que j'ai vu ce film, j'étais bouleversé.

first I saw the film, after that J'étais bouleversé, so why the plus-que-parfair du verbe "se bouleverser"
Asked 2 years ago
LauraKwiziq team member
Bonjour Doraida, J'étais bouleversé is not the plus-que-parfait of se bouleverser - there's no se (or rather me: je m'étais bouleversé). Here, étais is the imperfect and bouleversé is an adjective.
DoraidaC1Kwiziq community member
thanks. I understand now

Après que j'ai vu ce film, j'étais bouleversé.

first I saw the film, after that J'étais bouleversé, so why the plus-que-parfair du verbe "se bouleverser"

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NarelleC1Kwiziq community member

The passé composé or the plus- que- parfait depends on same subject or different subject .

Après qu'il est rentré chez lui, il s'est couché. MAIS Après que son ami était parti, il s'est couché. [His friend had left when he went to bed.]
Asked 2 years ago
AurélieKwiziq team member
Bonjour Narelle ! No, here the difference is linked to how much time passed in-between the two actions, and both are correct both ways. "Après qu'il est rentré chez lui, il s'est couché." -> here we used Passé Composé in both clauses, so the two actions seem to have happened quite close to each other. but "Après que son ami était parti, il s'est couché." -> here the Plus-que-Parfait action *had* happened clearly before the second one did, emphasising the gap in-between. I hope that's helpful! À bientôt !

The passé composé or the plus- que- parfait depends on same subject or different subject .

Après qu'il est rentré chez lui, il s'est couché. MAIS Après que son ami était parti, il s'est couché. [His friend had left when he went to bed.]

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