Can we say:

Now it's 05:05 pm. We haven't finished the work yet when they have already arrived.

Is it a correct sentence? Is there any problem about it?

  • 1
    No, it's not "valid / idiomatic". But it would be if you changed when to and. Commented Apr 24, 2019 at 12:16

1 Answer 1


I would have written this as:

It's now 05:05pm. We haven't finished our|this work yet, but they have already arrived.

Choice between our or this would depend on the context. the doesn't really fit unless you replace work with something specific.

Is this meant to be a written piece or spoken out loud, as the first phrase doesn't fit well with either mode.

  • Okay, then can we turn all the pasrt into past? Like, "It was 05:05pm. We hadn't finished our|this work yet, but they had already arrived" Commented Apr 24, 2019 at 16:23
  • If the rest of the context fits, then that's fine. The use of 05:05 pm still grates though - the rest of the piece sounds like spoken English, but a native would be very unlikely to describe the time that way.
    – MikeB
    Commented Apr 25, 2019 at 10:28

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