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When we want to use the そうです construction with verbs, we have to use the verb stem:

雨が降りそうです。

Is it possible to express the past with そうです? (it looks like it has rained/rained)

Or is it only correct to use みたいです for the purpose:雨が降ったみたいです

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    Just to be clear, are you aware that there are multiple そう constructions. 降りそう and 降るそう are both possible, but they are not the same grammar point and they mean different things. – Leebo Feb 15 at 6:08
  • @Leebo yes, I think I am. 降るそう means "it is sad that it will..." , doesn't it? My question is about そう for expressing what something looks like. – Enguroo Feb 15 at 6:12
  • Looky here: japanese.stackexchange.com/questions/45085 – BJCUAI Feb 15 at 6:15
  • You can use ようです as well like 雨が降ったようです. – Yuuichi Tam Feb 15 at 7:12
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It is possible to express the past with 「そうです」.
「昨日雨が降ったそうです」 roughly translates to 'I heard it rained yesterday'. Just to be clear, 「そうです」 doesn't have any meaning of 'hearing'. 「そうです」 expresses that you have not directly observed the rain, so you're not 100% sure whether it happened, but know the information from other indirect means.
Since I don't have the ability to add to the comments, I'll add a few more things from the comments here.
「降りそう」-> 'It seems it might rain'
「降るそう」-> 'Heard it's going to rain'
Both are rough translation to get the feel of uncertainty of the word 「〜そう〜」 has.

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