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Until today, I have been getting on well with my boyfriend but this morning we had an argument and he made me cry

Is it possible to write that I don't think so:

"Until today" includes today so the statement is valid for today, or the second part of the sentence tells the reader the contrary : this morning belongs to the past and the action is finished (the argument). The sentence will read better with past (had been getting or was getting)

May be "until today" does not include today

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  • How could "until today" include today, if something else happened today that broke the pattern? This is logic, not English. Nov 1, 2023 at 19:00
  • That is why I am asking thé question
    – Yves Lefol
    Nov 1, 2023 at 19:38
  • Does this answer your question? By vs Until vs Until then or Until - ambiguity or a lot of other options.
    – Joachim
    Nov 1, 2023 at 19:40
  • 'Until today' must necessarily include at least some of today. If you and your boyfriend were happy together until 00:00:01 today, and then you had an argument, you were happy for 1 second during today. If the argument happened at 23:59:59 yesterday, then you were happy until yesterday. Nov 1, 2023 at 21:03
  • Where did you find this sentence? Please edit to provide a link if possible, or tell us the source. Also, when you say "Is it possible to write that I don't think so", Do you mean, "Is it possible to write that? I don't think so" ??
    – gotube
    Nov 2, 2023 at 6:22

1 Answer 1

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1: Until today I had been getting on well with my boyfriend

...implies I'm not getting on with him now (today). But in most contexts...

2: This shop is [only] open until today

...implies the shop is open right now.


In short, exact context affects the possible meaning. And of course, part of the "context" is have/had been getting on in #1, and is open in #2.

Personally I can't really see any difference between Present Perfect have been and Past Perfect had been in OP's context, but others may have different opinions.


Note that today has "duration", which could affect interpretation. But now is just an instant in time, so it's worth considering...

3: I've never eaten sushi until now

...which is perfectly valid regardless of whether the speaker is looking at the sushi he's just about to eat, OR looking at the empty plate after he's just finished eating it.

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  • So my example is valid
    – Yves Lefol
    Nov 1, 2023 at 19:35
  • Yes. And according to this usage chart, your Present Perfect is actually more idiomatic than my preferred Past Perfect Until today I had been getting on... But obviously in your context, the speaker is no longer getting on well (if she was, there wouldn't be any point in saying until today). Whereas my example is ambiguous as regards whether I've yet eaten sushi at the exact moment of speaking. Nov 1, 2023 at 20:30
  • "Until today, I have been" means this was true in the past and continues to be true, but may cease to be true after today. So it's not equivalent to "Until today, I had been", which indicates something which has already ceased to be true.
    – Stuart F
    Nov 2, 2023 at 12:49
  • @StuartF: That's obviously the logical semantic difference, but there are more written instances of Until today I have heard nothing than there are of Until today I had heard nothing. And I doubt anyone would include until today there if they hadn't already heard something today. So I stand by my first comment, even though I wouldn't have expected to find that preference, before I saw the usage chart. Nov 2, 2023 at 13:28
  • @FumbleFingers Hi! I upvoted your good answer! I left you 2 comments on other question. I still wait your reply. Nov 4, 2023 at 12:09

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