The Importance of Being
The infinitive sein is a very important verb. It's used as frequently in German as “to be” is used in English. You are very familiar with it in the present tense. But now it's time to become familiar with its past tense.
Just like the English “to be,” the German sein makes a complete transformation in the past tense. “To be” becomes “was.” Sein becomes war. You'll find that, like other irregular verbs, conjugating war is a snap. Listen to your CD for the German pronunciation.
Table 13-10. The Past Tense of sein