FR: Last year was one of the worst years of my life - imparfait / passé composé


Bonsoir y'all,

I want to say "last year was one of the worst years of my life". But I'm not sure whether to use "était" or "a été". What's the difference?
"L'année dernière a été l'une des pires années de ma vie." Is it correct to translate this way?
  • Locape

    Senior Member
    For my part, I would use the passé composé here, 'à été', meaning it came to an end and things are now better for you. The imperfect is used for something that lasts, repeated actions or a habit, while the present perfect is mostly about completed actions in the past.

    Maître Capello

    Mod et ratures
    French – Switzerland
    Both tenses are possible depending on context, but you may not use them interchangeably. If you are talking about the feelings you had at the time, as context for other events that occurred last year, you should use the imparfait. If you are talking about the effects it has had on you, you should use the passé composé.

    See also FR: être - passé composé / imparfait.