Learn how to use Spanish clauses using the Participio
In Spanish we have clauses introduced by a Participio. These are generally time clauses expressing a finished action by saying "once something happens/has happened", "when something happens/has happened" or "something having happened". The action using the past participle is seen as having occured before the action in the main clause. Here are some examples:
Note that the past participle needs agreement in gender and number with the subject in the subordinate clause, e.g. terminada/ceremonia, dormidos/niños, etc
Often you find "Una vez" in front of the past participle as in literally: "Once...":
Use of the perfect participle
El gerundio compuesto, known in English as the perfect participle, can also be used the same way but this will place more emphasis on the completion of the action expressed in the subordinate clause:
Here, the participle is always going to be the masculine singular form.
Sometimes, the subordinate clause introduced by the participle can be interpreted as a "cause", for example:
Note that this use of the participle and perfect participle is more formal than clauses using cuando, después de or una vez que, for example:
Dormidos los niños, nos podremos relajar y cenar tranquilos.
Could also be said in a more relaxed and colloquial way:
- Cuando se duerman los niños...
- Una vez que se duerman los niños...
- Después de que se duerman los niños...
See also Using the Spanish gerund to say while [doing something]
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Examples and resources
Having finished the job, we had a few beers in the pub.