1.They say that he might not have done all he could to keep her safe.
2.There are many things he could have done over the years to keep her safe,but he didn't

Did I use tenses and addition of contrast correctly? Or should I say did nothing or even hasn't done?

  • Proofreading is off-topic here, but it looks like you might have a specific question about the meaning and usage of “might not have done”. Is #2 supposed to be a restatement of #1? Please edit your question to include context about what you are trying to do and what your question about English is. (Also, I think you meant “should”, not “souls”.) – Tyler James Young Oct 21 '14 at 20:56
  • Personally I would drop the pronoun in the final clause. 'But he didn't' should become 'but didn't'. By doing that, you keep the ideas in the clauses linked so the reader would know instantly what he didn't do. By dropping the pronoun you can then not have to add 'nothing' on the end. – MMJZ Oct 25 '14 at 0:28

Statement 1: looks and reads well to me. You could also have used "They say that he may not have done all he could to keep her safe.

Statement 2: I would agree with the comment above that you could drop the "he" in the final clause, as it is implied from the earlier use. In my opinion the use of "did nothing" in the final clause is preferred to "didn't" as I think it is better English, assuming of course that is what you want to say, as it means something a little different: "didn't" suggests that he did not do all he could have done, whereas "did nothing" clearly implies that he did nothing at all.

"Hasn't done" does not work in this context as it is a different tense (I think). If you were to say "There are many things he could do to keep her safe" then it would be appropriate to end the sentence with "but hasn't done." or just "but hasn't."

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