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Learn estar conjugation in Pretérito Pluscuamperfecto B

estar means: to be
Click to see all conjugation charts of estar in every tense

In this conjugation lesson we are going to learn how to inflect the verb estar in the Pretérito Pluscuamperfecto B tense of the Subjuntivo mood. It means we will see step by step how to create and translate forms of each grammatical person.

How to translate Pretérito Pluscuamperfecto B to English

Note that the English phrases provided below next to each conjugation are not direct translations from Spanish to English. They are usually the closest general equivalents. The example differences are:
  • In Spanish conjugation, there is the form usted in the third person singular. But this person does not translate to the English third person singular. It translates to the so called formal you and uses the inflected form which is most often represented as he/she/it in English conjugation charts.
  • Similar situation happens in the third person plural, where ustedes translates to the English plural formal you but uses the form which corresponds to the they form in English.
  • Tenses are used differently in Spanish and English, so the actual translation should always take into account the context and focus on translating the meaning, not just words.
  • In both languages each verb may have multiple meanings and not every meaning translates directly to the other language. Here also, the context and focusing on the particular meaning helps to create the most accurate translation.


Step by step instructions

Pretérito Pluscuamperfecto B is a compound tense (Spanish: compuesto). It means that all of its inflected forms consist of two words. In Spanish language, there are also simple tenses, where each conjugated verb form is one word long.

In a compound tense the endings of the auxiliary verb change, not the endings of the main verb, which is the case in Spanish simple tenses.In the compound tenses, every person’s form consist of two parts:
  • A conjugated form of the auxiliary verb haber. In case of the Pretérito Pluscuamperfecto de Subjuntivo B tense, we use the Pretérito Imperfecto de Subjuntivo B (Imperfect Subjunctive B) conjugation of haber
  • Past Participle, which is always the same in every compound tense for a given verb
See the conjugation charts to learn how to conjugate the auxiliary verb haber. That’s a separate topic, so for brevity we’re focusing on the parts derived from estar only here.In order to create the Participio form, we need a stem and an ending. We use the stem of the infinitive of the main verb, and a single ending, which depends on the conjugation group of the main verb. So we need to begin by splitting the infinitive into a stem and an ending. It’s easy to do – simply remove two letters from the end of the infinitive form and you have the ending – one of -ar, -er, -ir. What’s left is the stem.So in case of the verb estar it’s easy to see that:
  • the stem is: est-
  • and the ending is: -ar
Based on the ending of the infinitive we can recognize that estar belongs to the -ar verb group. This group, in turn, uses the -ado ending in its Participio form. Putting all that together, our Participio is: estado.

Now, as we understand how both parts used by this tense are created separately, let’s move on with creating the final conjugation forms.
In order to create the first person singular form, we simply take the first person singular form of haber conjugated in Pretérito Imperfecto de Subjuntivo B, which is hubiese. To that we add the Participio estado to get hubiese estado:
  • yo hubiese estado – I had been
Next, to create the form for the second person singular, we again need to take the second person singular form of haber from the Pretérito Imperfecto de Subjuntivo B tense, and it is hubieses. To this auxiliary verb we add the Participio estado (so the exact same word as previously) to get hubieses estado:
  • tú hubieses estado – you had been
Similarly, if we want to create the form for the third person singular, we conjugate haber in the Pretérito Imperfecto B tense and we use the corresponding person’s form (third person singular), namely hubiese. Then we also take the same Participio as for all other persons, and putting them together we get hubiese estado:
  • él hubiese estado – he had been
  • ella hubiese estado – she had been
  • usted hubiese estado – (formal) you had been
The first person plural has the form hubiésemos estado. It’s created by following the same logic as in the other persons. We first take the form of the first person plural from haber conjugation in the Pretérito Imperfecto de Subjuntivo B tense: hubiésemos. Second, and to this word we again add the Participio of estar: estado to get hubiésemos estado:
  • nosotros hubiésemos estado – we had been
  • nosotras hubiésemos estado – (feminine) we had been
Again, let’s do the same for the second person plural. We need to get the conjugated form of the verb haber in the Pretérito Imperfecto de Subjuntivo B tense, second person plural, and it is hubieseis. Next, we take our unchanged Participio, we join them, and we get hubieseis estado:
  • vosotros hubieseis estado – (plural) you had been
  • vosotras hubieseis estado – (feminine, plural) you had been
And finally, the last grammatical person on the list, the third person plural, has the form hubiesen estado. We create it in the exact same manner as in all the other grammatical persons. We need the third person plural of haber first, from its Pretérito Imperfecto B conjugation. It is hubiesen. We add the Participio of estar again (estado) to get hubiesen estado:
  • ellos hubiesen estado – they had been
  • ellas hubiesen estado – (feminine) they had been
  • ustedes hubiesen estado – (formal, plural) you had been

That’s it! The conjugation is now complete. The final result looks as follows:

yohubiese estadoI had been
hubieses estadoyou had been
él/ella/ustedhubiese estadohe/she/it had been
nosotros/nosotrashubiésemos estadowe had been
vosotros/vosotrashubieseis estadoyou had been
ellos/ellas/ustedeshubiesen estadothey had been
Click to see all conjugation charts of estar in every tense

But do not end your session yet – it is very important to repeat and practice the material in order to retain it. Check below for suggestions.

Next Steps to Perfection

  • To practice this conjugation and test yourself try this Conjugation Exercise or the Memory Game
  • To see other conjugation lessons for this verb choose another tense:  
  • For exercises and examples related to estar visit our Exercise section
  • To see conjugation charts in all tenses for estar visit the Conjugator
  • To explore other learning materials visit the Study section


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