Conjugate decir in El Pretérito Perfecto (present perfect)

El Pretérito Perfecto is used to express something that has happened or happened. 

The verb decir (to say/tell) is irregular in El Pretérito Perfecto:

yo he  
has  
él/ella/usted ha   + dicho 
nosotros /-as hemos   
vosotros/-as habéis  
ellos /-as /ustedes han  

You can see it is simply:

haber in El Presente +  dicho (past participle of decir)

Here are some examples to listen to:

Yo he dicho la verdad.
I have told the truth.

¿Qué has dicho?
What did you say? ("you" = "tú" = singular informal)

Juan ha dicho que sí.
Juan has said yes.

Usted ha dicho una mentira.
You have told a lie. 

Nosotros hemos dicho que no.
We have said no.

¿Vosotros habéis dicho eso?
Did you say that? 

Mis padres no han dicho bien la frase.
My parents haven't pronounced the sentence correctly.

Tus amigas han dicho muchas cosas.
Your friends have said many things.

See also List of Irregular Spanish past participles

Learn more about these related Spanish grammar topics

Examples and resources

¿Qué has dicho?
What did you say? ("you" = "tú" = singular informal)


¿Vosotros habéis dicho eso?
Did you say that? 


Nosotros hemos dicho que no.
We have said no.


Tus amigas han dicho muchas cosas.
Your friends have said many things.


Juan ha dicho que sí.
Juan has said yes.


Yo he dicho la verdad.
I have told the truth.


Mis padres no han dicho bien la frase.
My parents haven't pronounced the sentence correctly.


Usted ha dicho una mentira.
You have told a lie. 


Q&A Forum 4 questions, 5 answers

CoraA1Kwiziq community member

Translating el pretérito perfecto

Leaving aside the issue of what you call this tense, I had trouble because I thought that the "perfect" tenses corresponded more closely with English in the sense of use of the auxiliary verb. It seems that most of the examples given show English translations with the auxiliary verb, but not all of them. So what is the difference between "No le dije" and "No le he dicho"? It would seem that the first translates to "I didn't tell him" and the second to "I haven't told him." But the examples seem to conflate the two.

Asked 1 month ago
JohnB2Kwiziq Q&A regular contributor

Hi Cora,

I have found this conflation difficult but the Spanish use of past tenses is really interesting and precise, albeit complex. As I understand it, most of the time the present perfect tense seems to be translated as if it were the preterite e.g. No le he dicho .... I didn't tell him; No lo he comido .. I didn't eat it. That said, the perfect tense is used because they want to indicate that the event took place within "this" period - e.g. today [this day], this week, this morning, this evening, this month etc. Sometimes it is translated as I have not told him / I have not eaten it, but I just rely on the translation or hint provided in the exercise to guide me as to their intention, though I would like to know more about when the latter translation is preferred. The preterite tense is used to indicate that the event took place [or didn't] at a time in the past which is now over [yesterday, last week, the day before last, last month, last year, etc]. 

There are tables available called "Marcas Temporales" or time markers which gives a list of words and phrases [like "Ayer ..." has to be used with the preterite because it is completely over, or "Este mañana .... has to be used with the present perfect] which point to which time period is used.

I hope this answers your question. I'm sure the teacher can add to this. Regards. John

InmaKwiziq team member

Hola Cora,

Yes, as John very well explained, the use of the perfect tense in Spanish and in English is not always the same. It is to do with considering the action to be still part of the present (this is the case of markers like "hoy", "esta mañana", "en los últimos meses"...) or to belong to a time frame that is disconnected to the moment of speaking (e.g. "ayer" "el año pasado"...). There is a lesson that explains this will detail, focusing on the type of time markers that is used each time. Have a look.

As an extra tip, always read the hints in each question when you are being tested on conjugations. We give special attention to hints especially when the tenses in Spanish and English differ, because we understand this may cause a bit of confusion. 

I hope this helps.

Un saludo cordial

Inma

Cora asked:View original

Translating el pretérito perfecto

Leaving aside the issue of what you call this tense, I had trouble because I thought that the "perfect" tenses corresponded more closely with English in the sense of use of the auxiliary verb. It seems that most of the examples given show English translations with the auxiliary verb, but not all of them. So what is the difference between "No le dije" and "No le he dicho"? It would seem that the first translates to "I didn't tell him" and the second to "I haven't told him." But the examples seem to conflate the two.

Sign in to submit your answer

Don't have an account yet? Join today

FridaA2Kwiziq community member

Conjugate "decir" in the Pretérito Perfecto.

« Conjugate "decir" in the Pretérito Perfecto»  I did it in the Pretérito Perfecto Simple! 

Should  we not been informed to  use  "decir" in the Pretérito Perfecto COMPUESTO?

Asked 1 month ago
InmaKwiziq team member

Hola Frida,

We chose a name (the ones that we considered as the most commonly used in Spain) for each tense. The name used by Kwiziq when referring to the present perfect tense is "El Pretérito Perfecto" and the name used by Kwiziq when referring to the past simple tense is "El Pretérito Indefinido".

However we have information in our site about all possible names for all tenses, for all those students who have learned Spanish in different countries and have used other tense names. 

Here is the information. I hope it is useful.

Spanish tenses names

Un saludo

Inma

Conjugate "decir" in the Pretérito Perfecto.

« Conjugate "decir" in the Pretérito Perfecto»  I did it in the Pretérito Perfecto Simple! 

Should  we not been informed to  use  "decir" in the Pretérito Perfecto COMPUESTO?

Sign in to submit your answer

Don't have an account yet? Join today

EllenA2Kwiziq community member

Nombre del tiempo: el pretérito perfecto

¿Porque se dice ambos, el presente perfecto (en otros textos) y el pretérito perfecto? Esto me confunde  mucho... ¡Muchas gracias!

Asked 4 months ago
InmaKwiziq team member

Hola Ellen

We don't call this tense in Spanish "el presente perfecto"; this is its equivalent in English "The present perfect". We call it either El Pretérito Perfecto or El Pretérito Perfecto Compuesto, in Spanish. In Latin America this tense is also called "Antepresente". Here is a list of the different names given to all tenses that will help,

Spanish tense names

Saludos,

Inma

Nombre del tiempo: el pretérito perfecto

¿Porque se dice ambos, el presente perfecto (en otros textos) y el pretérito perfecto? Esto me confunde  mucho... ¡Muchas gracias!

Sign in to submit your answer

Don't have an account yet? Join today

EmilyA2Kwiziq community member

When do you use “yo dije”?

Asked 1 year ago
InmaKwiziq team member

Hi Emily

Here is a lesson that will help you understand when we use verbs in general in the Simple past or the Present perfect:

When to use the preterite or the present perfect in European Spanish

I hope it helps.

Inma

 

When do you use “yo dije”?

Sign in to submit your answer

Don't have an account yet? Join today

Getting that for you now.