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I've recently learnt that we can use "since" only with the connection to the present. But how should we say about THOSE ABSOLUTELY SAME actions but after they stopped? (I know about the past perfect but it has a connection to another moment in the past which is not the case here)

A:

  1. She's been going to his grave every weekend since 1923. (She still goes there)
  2. She went/was going to his grave every weekend (?) 1923. (She doesn't go there anymore)(from?)

B:

  1. He hasn't done that since he was a teenager. (He's alive)
  2. He didn't do that (?) he was a teenager. (He's dead)(from when?)

C:

  1. He's been looking after them ever since he's been living here. (He still looks after them)
  2. He looked/was looking after them ever (?) he had been living here. (He died many years ago)(after?)

D:

  1. I've been there many times since I've known him. (He is still alive)
  2. I went there many times (?) I had known him. (He died many years ago)(after?)

What should we change "since" to in 2's after those actions stopped/finished?

1 Answer 1

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The usual way to speak of past habits is the "used to" construction:

She used to visit his grave every weekend.

If you need to specify when she started and to visit, you can add:

She used to visit his grave every weekend from 1923 till 1982.

In the second case you are speaking of something that he didn't do. Simple past will do, but you can emphasise with "never".

He didn't do (or "never did") that from when he was a teenager until his death.

But it might be better to simply rephrase as a positive sentence

He stopped doing that when he was a teenager.

C and D can also be phrased as "used to" "I used to look after him", "I used to visit him".

I used to look after him when (or while) he was living here.

In some cases the simple past also works well. It depends on the meaning of the verb:

I visited his house many times.

You don't need to say "when I knew him" because that is implied by context.

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    For the last example, you could use something like after I first met him or once I got to know him. However, as James says, it's probably not necessary. It's possible, but not likely, that you would regularly visit the home of someone you didn't know. Commented May 21, 2022 at 18:19

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