To help some more about the difference between perfect and imperfect tenses in French.
When speaking in the past, French has two tenses: imparfait or passé composé. These two co-existing past tenses are used depending on the circumstance. “ Was”, that is to say the verb “to be” in the past, can be either:
était /aytay/ or a été /ah aytay/
When to use which?
For a description, a state, a mood or situation in the past, or moreover a formal habit, use the imparfait (était /aytay/).
était /aytay/ translates into : was, was being, was always, used to be, would (always)be, formely was, previously was.
For an action that is now over
– I repeat: now over
use the passé composé: a été /ah aytay/
(…One week later) :
a été /ah aytay/ translates into : has been, was
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