Portuguese Language Blog

How To Say “I Had Done” in Portuguese Posted by on Sep 30, 2014 in Grammar


Image by az via Flickr – http://ow.ly/Bx4PT

Olá, pessoal!

In today’s post we are going to learn how to say “I had done”, “I had gone”, “I had worked” etc. It’s simple: use the verb “ter” in the imperfect form (tinha, tinha, tinha, tínhamos, tinham, tinham) + the past participle of the main verb.

Here’s an example with regular verb trabalhar (to work)


Eu tinha trabalhado = I had worked
Você tinha trabalhado = You had worked
Ele tinha trabalhado = He had worked
Ela tinha trabalhado = She had worked
A gente tinha trabalhado = We had worked (familiar)
Nós tínhamos trabalhado = We had worked
Vocês tinham trabalhado = You had worked (plural)
Eles tinham trabalhado = They had worked (masculine plural)
Elas tinham trabalhado = They had worked (feminine plural)


Eu não tinha trabalhado = I hadn’t worked
Você não tinha trabalhado = You hadn’t worked
Ele não tinha trabalhado = He hadn’t worked
Ela não tinha trabalhado = She hadn’t worked
A gente não tinha trabalhado = We hadn’t worked (familiar)
Nós não tínhamos trabalhado = We hadn’t worked
Vocês não tinham trabalhado = You hadn’t worked (plural)
Eles não tinham trabalhado = They hadn’t worked (masculine plural)
Elas não tinham trabalhado = They hadn’t worked (feminine plural)


Eu tinha trabalhado? = Had I worked?
Você tinha trabalhado? = Had you worked?
Ele tinha trabalhado? = Had he worked?
Ela tinha trabalhado? = Had she worked?
A gente tinha trabalhado? = Had we worked? (familiar)
Nós tínhamos trabalhado? = Had we worked?
Vocês tinham trabalhado? = Had you worked? (plural)
Eles tinham trabalhado? = Had they worked? (masculine plural)
Elas tinham trabalhado? = Had they worked? (feminine plural)

Some examples:

Quando eu cheguei em casa, ele tinha ido embora. – When I arrived home, he had left.
Não fui ao cinema porque já tinha visto o filme. – I didn’t go to the movies because I had already seen the movie.
Ele nunca tinha visto uma mulher tão bonita. – He had never seen such a beautiful woman.
Nós viajamos de ônibus porque tínhamos vendido nosso carro. – We traveled by bus because we had sold our car.
Eu já tinha resolvido que ia sair quando ele ligou. – I had already decided I was going to go out when he called.
O avião já tinha decolado quando chegamos ao aeroporto. – The plane had already taken off when we arrived at the airport.

The Participles

Some participles are regular:

andar [walk] – andado
falar [speak] – falado
beber [drink] – bebido
comer [eat] – comido
decidir [decide] – decidido
insistir [insist] – insistido

And some are irregular:

ver [see] – visto
vir [come] – vindo
pôr [put] – posto
fazer [do/make] – feito
cobrir [cover] – coberto
abrir [open] – aberto
descobrir [discover] – descoberto
escrever [write] – escrito
dizer [say] – dito

We use this verb tense the same way we use the Past Perfect in English, so it’s no big deal – you only need to get the verb ter + the past participle right. Yes, you need to study hard – there’s not a magic way to learn them.

See you next time!

Want more free resources to learn Portuguese? Check out the other goodies we offer to help make your language learning efforts a daily habit.

Keep learning Brazilian Portuguese with us!

Build vocabulary, practice pronunciation, and more with Transparent Language Online. Available anytime, anywhere, on any device.

Try it Free Find it at your Library
Share this:
Pin it

About the Author: Adir

English / Spanish teacher and translator for over 20 years. I have been blogging since 2007 and I am also a professional singer in my spare time.