I always see this structure(1) in movies, tv series etc. but I think this structure is grammatically incorrect. I suppose I would use this structure in a daily conversation but not in a essay or a academic paper. I would use the past perfect version(2) instead. Am I right ?

1-No one has ever seen anything like it until two days ago.

2-No one had ever seen anything like it until two days ago.

1 Answer 1


The second is correct. You are talking about some event prior to a time in the past, so you need a past tense.

The first is quite common in speech, because of how our mind works:

Nobody has ever seen a black hole {thinks, remembers extra detail} until the EHT made an image of M87.

It is an error. But a very common one.

  • Thank you but still some native speakers insist on saying the first one is correct if I am speaking in present moment. May 4, 2019 at 13:39
  • Whether it is correct, or a common error isn't worth an argument. The meaning is clear enough.
    – James K
    May 4, 2019 at 13:42
  • Yeah you are right. Which version would you use if you were to write a essay or something formal? May 4, 2019 at 13:44
  • I'd use the second. But I wouldn't condemn someone who used the first.
    – James K
    May 4, 2019 at 19:25

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