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I got a parcel from the label but it is not what I ordered. I ordered a copy of this and that I received two other things. Both of them had been already ordered and received. I knew you had problems but when I saw the parcel I thought they were over!! I expected to receive what I had ordered! I was wrong......

Will it be possible to write "I had expected" instead of "I expected" because what I had expected did not happen?

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  • The text you have written is a bit unclear. a) "I ordered a copy of this and that I received two other things" is not grammatical. In addition, it is unclear what this means: b) "but when I saw the parcel I thought they were over!!"
    – user6951
    May 12, 2015 at 19:04
  • I ordered 2 singles but I received 2 different singles. It was not what I ordered but when I saw the parcel I thought your problems were over .In which cases can I use I had expected to receive what I had ordered
    – user5577
    May 13, 2015 at 12:03

2 Answers 2

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Past Perfect is used in the same sentence as Past Tense so a reader can know what happened before some other past action. If you use Past Perfect in both sentences (in your example), then both of them happened before what?!

So I would just leave as is, or introduce another sentence like "I was surprised as I had expected to receive what I had ordered".

The native speakers may suggest another approach from the spoken speech. Things I wrote here are for the written conversations.

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    I had expected to receive what I had ordered is fine. Both perfect tenses can relate to other, separate past times. They do not have to relate to each other, if written/said in the same sentence. But, in general, such use of the past perfect can amount to overuse. It really depends on the nuance in meaning and how nuanced one wants to be at any particular moment..
    – user6951
    May 12, 2015 at 18:52
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You can write/say:

I had expected to receive what I had ordered.

This is fine. And the (past) perfect can be used to express a particular nuance of meaning--as long as you know what you ared doing. But it is not necessary in this sentence; and if you do say it, you risk overusing the past perfect.

Your text is a little bit unclear (see my comment), so I won't go into details until you've cleared it up.

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  • So I should write But when I saw the parcel l was thinking you did not have anymore problems but I was wrong because I did not receive what I (had)ordered. Is it clearer?
    – user5577
    May 12, 2015 at 19:43
  • Yes, that's clear. And in this case, I would use the simple past, ordered.
    – user6951
    May 12, 2015 at 21:45
  • But you still did not clear up the two sentences I mentioned in the comment that I link to in my answer...
    – user6951
    May 12, 2015 at 21:51
  • "problems anymore" (no longer) or "any more problems" (only the problems already encountered). NOT "anymore problems" , Because the single word "anymore" is an adverb, not an adjective. May 13, 2015 at 8:05

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