1

I have such a rule in my head that if we have "already", "still" or "yet" I am obliged to use Perfect Tenses.

But can these words be used in Past Simple?

I already finished the work (some time in Past, not now)

I didn't learn English yet (some time in Past, not now)

I was still learning English.

And difference will be with:

I had already finished the work

I hadn't learned English yet

I had been still learning English

3
  • You have placed some of those adverbs incorrectly. You might want to correct those first.
    – Lambie
    Oct 8 '19 at 13:17
  • The question is not specific.It is difficult to answer when the question is not clear Oct 8 '19 at 13:43
  • Get that rule out of your head.
    – Patriot
    Feb 10 at 13:43
1

I already finished the work I didn't learn English yet.

In British English (BE), It would be I have already finished work I have not learnt English yet.

But in American English(AE) they use already, yet with past tense so the below sentence is correct. **I already finished the work **.

5
  • No, you didn't understand. I dint want to link it to present. For better understanding we can add "yesterday." "Yesterday I already finished the work I didn't learn English yet". What do you think about it? Apr 24 '19 at 7:21
  • you said that you didn't want to link it to present but when you use "yet" then It has already been connected to Present. So "I didn't learn English yet" does not make sense.You should say "I haven't learnt English Yet" OR simply write " I didn't learn English" Apr 26 '19 at 2:30
  • using "yet" should always go with Perfect? Apr 26 '19 at 15:01
  • 1
    This AmE/BrE thing is not right. To be strictly standard, AmE requires present perfect too.
    – Lambie
    Oct 8 '19 at 13:08
  • 1
    Then why do Americans often use Past Simple with "already", "yet", "still" and so on if only Pefect tenses should be used with them? Oct 8 '19 at 14:02
1

I already finished the work (some time in Past, not now)
I had already finished the work

The second one is better here and it would usually be followed by something else happening. I already finished sounds unnatural

I didn't learn English yet (some time in Past, not now)
I hadn't learned English yet

Neither of those sounds right as I have not learned English yet would be appropriate.

I was still learning English.
I had been still learning English

In this case the first one is better and would usually have a follow on to speak of what happened next. The second one would be better as I had still been learning English.

In all cases I come to the end of the sentence feeling it has come to an end unexpectedly and I am left wanting more.

0

Take one thing at a time.

  1. Yet, still, and already can go with the simple past.

Already can mean that something happened before.

I already ate.

Still can mean that something has gone from past to present without change.

Was John still at home when you called him? --Yes, he was.

Yet can mean in addition.

She lied yet again.

Yet can also mean that something did not happen, but it could.

I did not swim yet. I will later.

Don't worry about the past perfect. That is a different kettle of fish.

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