2

Which sentences are correct please ?

"I'd had my camera for 3 weeks before I sold it yesterday."

"I had my camera for 3 weeks before I sold it yesterday."

"I had my camera for 3 weeks when I sold it yesterday."

"I had my camera for 3 weeks. Yesterday I sold it."

I think 1,2 and 4 are correct

  • With duration, you use the perfect. In this case, the past perfect. Thus, one is the most correct. – Ghaith Alrestom Feb 21 '16 at 9:56
  • But I have seen" I walked for 3 days" This is a duration without perfect – user5577 Feb 21 '16 at 10:40
  • That's right. There is a lot of usage of simple past with duration. But grammatically speaking, it should be the perfect tense, at least that's what I have read in grammar books and what I have been taught. However, people don't like complexities and florid language since it doesn't really make a big difference in making your point. Here in the US, people even forget all of those different tenses. They just use the easiest and the simplest. – Ghaith Alrestom Feb 21 '16 at 10:48
1

past simple + for indicates that once the period is over, the action is no longer done.

I had my camera for 3 weeks. (The three weeks are over and the camera is no longer in my hands.)

It's different when using the present perfect, because this tense focuses in the present:

I've had my camera for 3 weeks. (After the period of weeks is over, I still have the camera.)

So basically, the sentences make sense, but the third one sounds a little weird.

  • 1
    However, there's no Present Perfect in the OP's examples. There's Past Perfect. – SovereignSun Jun 15 '17 at 8:47
  • @SovereignSun I don't know why I added that. I probably misread the question. – Alejandro Jun 16 '17 at 17:06

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