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There is the following sentence

I thought we could sit under a tree and rest but I found that we ........ by many people around.

  • are watched
  • have been watching
  • were watching
  • were being watching

Which fills the blank correctly? (maybe none of them) why? It was a quiz and the test book says the (b) is correct but I doubt.

Some other guesses by me:

  • were being watched
  • would have being watched
  • would being watched
  • might being watched
  • might have being watched

Which of these could fill the blank?

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    IMO, none! 'were being watched' is the answer. – Maulik V Nov 19 '15 at 7:31
  • @MaulikV - I guess you're right, you might post this as an answer! – CowperKettle Nov 19 '15 at 9:43
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    The correct answer is not found among the choices. Also, the final word of the sentence, "around", is not right. We can be taken around or shown around, but not watched around. We need something like "by many people who were standing around" or reduced form "by many people standing around". – Tᴚoɯɐuo Nov 19 '15 at 10:48
  • @TRomano thanks but what is the correct answer? – Ahmad Nov 19 '15 at 12:03
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None of these is the correct answer*. b) is certainly not correct. Even text books can be wrong!

Ignore the first clause "I thought we could sit under a tree and rest" and the conjunctive clause but I found that". They do not change the grammar of the final section, and only make things more messy. And remove the "around" from the end. It's just plain wrong in every single case, imo

"we were being watched by many people." (Passive voice) is the same as "many people were watching us" (The active version)

Many people watched us. It was in the past. And it was ongoing for a while. So the tense is the past imperfect, and it's in the passive voice.

would have being watched

The nearest grammatically-correct construct is "We would have been watched by many people."

would being watched

The nearest grammatically-correct construct is "We would be watched by many people."

might being watched

The nearest grammatically-correct construct is "We might be watched by many people."

might have being watched

The nearest grammatically-correct construct is "We might have been watched by many people."

  • From the original textbook list, "We are watched by many people" is grammatically possible, but is only applicable in certain situations. Perhaps if we are stars of a popular television show.
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  • Thank you! Does "We would have been watched by many people" means that if we had sat under the tree, we would have been watched by many...so, we didn't sit? I meant to say a verb that didn't happen? – Ahmad Nov 20 '15 at 7:13
  • Yes, exactly. "We would have been watched by many people if"... or "*We would have been watched by many people" so instead we decided to..." – Euan M Nov 20 '15 at 8:01

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