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"There were drops of blood on the floor, it looked as if a small wounded creature had limped through the stall."

Could you say:

“There were drops of blood on the floor, it looked as if a small wounded creature had been limping through the stall"

without any difference in meaning?

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    I believe they are functionally equivalent. The only "difference" is in the pacing of the sentences—the first seems more "active" to me. – Jason Bassford May 14 '18 at 9:49
  • I get the feeling this must be a duplicate question; I feel like some variant of this gets asked almost weekly. – J.R. May 14 '18 at 10:44
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    @J.R. I get the feeling that English tenses are a surprisingly tricky thing. Maybe we should have some kind of canonical post for it (beyond the one about the perfect, which I think already exists). – stangdon May 14 '18 at 11:17
  • I couldn't agree more. The difficulty is not so much understanding the meaning but feeling the nuance, which you can't always learn from a book. – anouk May 14 '18 at 16:16
  • @stangdon - I have had those same thoughts: (a) this must be vexingly tricky, and (b) there ought to be a canonical post to help explain it. – J.R. May 14 '18 at 18:13

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