John:Why did you not ask your father for money?

Paul:I did not ask him because I had asked him before for money and (he had become very angry/he became very angry) at that time.

Which option is correct ?

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The second option is correct:

I did not ask him because I had asked him before for money and he became very angry at that time.

The rule, as Grammarly explains, is:

When you’re talking about some point in the past and want to reference an event that happened even earlier, using the past perfect allows you to convey the sequence of the events. It’s also clearer and more specific.

In your case, Paul asked for money first and then his father became angry. So past perfect is used only for "ask," to show that it came before his father's response.

  • 1
    But the later action was actually "didn't ask him", and the other two actions were before this one, so we have 3 points in the past. Don't the other past actions require a Past Perfect? – SunnySideDown Jun 19 at 3:20
  • The part before "because" is a separate clause. That puts it in a different context from the other two actions. – JDM-GBG Jun 23 at 0:04

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