The indicative past precedent is a past tense with an indicative mood and a precedent aspect. It is formed according to the following pattern:

past participle + auxiliary verb بودن (to be) in past simple

The past precedent is identical in structure to the past narrative. The difference is that the auxiliary verb بودن (budan) is conjugated in the past simple rather than in the present simple tense.


Simple verbs

1S رفته بودم
rafte budam
I had gone
2S رفته بودی
rafte budi
You had gone
3S رفته بود
rafte bud
He/She had gone
1P رفته بودیم
rafte budim
We had gone
2P رفته بودید
rafte budid
You had gone
3P رفته بودند
rafte budand
They had gone

رفته بودم literally means “I was gone”, رفته بودی means “You were gone” and so on.

Compound verbs

1S کار کرده بودم
kâr karde budam
I had worked
2S کار کرده بودی
kâr karde budi
You had worked
3S کار کرده بود
kâr karde bud
He/She had worked
1P کار کرده بودیم
kâr karde budim
We had worked
2P کار کرده بودید
kâr karde budid
You had worked
3P کار کرده بودند
kâr karde budand
They had worked

Negative conjugation

The negative form of the past precedent tense is constructed by prefixing ن (na) to the past participle.

1S نرفته بودم
narafte budam
I had not gone
2S نرفته بودی
narafte budi
You had not gone
3S نرفته بود
narafte bud
He/She had not gone
1P نرفته بودیم
narafte budim
We had not gone
2P نرفته بودید
narafte budid
You had not gone
3P نرفته بودند
narafte budand
They had not gone
1S کار نکرده بودم
kâr nakarde budam
I had not worked
2S کار نکرده بودی
kâr nakarde budi
You had not worked
3S کار نکرده بود
kâr nakarde bud
He/She had not worked
1P کار نکرده بودیم
kâr nakarde budim
We had not worked
2P کار نکرده بودید
kâr nakarde budid
You had not worked
3P کار نکرده بودند
kâr nakarde budand
They had not worked


Persian's past precedent tense is equivalent to English past perfect. We use the past precedent to indicate that an action has happened before another action in the past and precedes it. That is why it is called precedent in Persian.

فراموش کرده بودم
Farâmush karde budam
I had forgotten
پولی نداشتم چون کیفم را گم کرده بودم
Pul-i nadâshtam chon kif-am râ gom karde budam
I did not have any money because I had lost my wallet
وقتی که رسیدیم، رفته بودند
Vaght-i ke residim, rafte budand
By the time we arrived, they had gone