Questions tagged [past-continuous]

Questions related to the past continuous or past progressive, which expresses an action that was ongoing in the past.

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
1
vote
1answer
70 views

Why using the past continuous tense when the action has already finished?

Past continuous tense The past continuous describes actions or events in a time before now, which began in the past and is still going on at the time of speaking. In other words, it expresses ...
2
votes
1answer
381 views

Past Simple Passive vs Past Simple with 'follow'

Here is an extract from my grammar practice book. A young man was walking through a supermarket. Suddenly he noticed that he (follow) by an old lady. As far as I understand, in that situation we ...
0
votes
1answer
74 views

Past Progressive + BEFORE/AFTER + Gerund

Tom Cruise was thinking of a career in the church before finding job in the movies. Tom Cruise wasn't thinking of a career in the church after finding job in the movies. Please tell me, why is ...
3
votes
1answer
73 views

“Words were different when they (lived / were living) inside of you”

“Words were different when they lived inside of you.” ― Benjamin Alire Sáenz, Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe. Shouldn't it be "...when they were living inside of you."?...
-3
votes
1answer
369 views

weren't going vs didn't go [duplicate]

I already asked a question about “weren’t playing” vs. “didn’t play”. I’m not sure if the same rules apply in an example like this one: The weather was very bad, so we didn't go north. vs The ...
6
votes
2answers
2k views

weren't playing vs didn't play

Did your team win the football match yesterday? The weather was very bad, so we weren't playing. vs The weather was very bad, so we didn't play. Is the first one not correct? Why is it?
1
vote
1answer
90 views

past simple/continuous with a specific time

I was driving too fast last night. I drove too fast last night. I want to know if the past simple and continuous can both be used in this case, because usually the past continuous is used for ...
1
vote
1answer
30 views

Equality of continuous and perfect tenses (in a certain context)

Would they be both correct and equal in the same context (just to mention the fact) if I said TODAY: (1)It has been raining all day. (2)It is raining all day. Would they be both correct and ...
1
vote
1answer
35 views

Can I use past continuous here?

A:..Then I sent you a message from the cafe to to say where I was last night. B: I didn't get any texts from you yesterday! I tried to phone you but there was no answer. I have two ...
1
vote
1answer
94 views

Past Continuous with while

The sentence: The boy stole / was stealing the apples while nobody was looking / looked. Question: Which variant is more appropriate?
2
votes
1answer
227 views

How to express something that is happening in the future

If something is being written in the past tense, is it correct to say: He was graduating high school in June and entering college in August? How should it be stated?
1
vote
1answer
56 views

Past Continuous vs Past Simple difference in meaning

Could you, please, help me understand this dialogue from my English textbook? A: Why was Ann crying before? B: She had been training for the finals for over a week before she found out she had ...
1
vote
2answers
3k views

Is “I was wanting to know” grammatically correct? [duplicate]

Is the following sentence grammatically correct: I was wanting to know if I could sent you a link. It does not sound correct to me.
2
votes
4answers
214 views

Can the use of the Past (Simple, Continuous) be ever considered correct with “in/for the past few+time”

I know that it's a norm to use Present Perfect (Continuous) with "in/for the past few + time" I have been staying with my parents for the last few days. I have learnt a lot of new words in the last ...
1
vote
1answer
31 views

“the thing someone did was do something” or “the thing someone did was doing something”?

Here is what I have found in Crash Course US history at 13 minute and 4 second, and it really confused me. Whereas if you are an american arguably the most important thing the leader of this era ...
1
vote
2answers
3k views

Past Simple and Past Perfect. “I had seen” or “I saw” him a few days before he left

Yesterday I saw this sentence in some test without any context: I ... (see) him a few days before he ... (leave). My answer was "I'd seen him a few days before he left", but it was wrong. Right ...
0
votes
1answer
97 views

using past continuous tense with tomorrow

What does this mean? like I wasn't dreading tomorrow enough having to give it back to him I saw this in friend's series and I don't understand it.
3
votes
1answer
183 views

Past Perfect vs Past Perfect Continuous

A- When I last went to Moscow, they had renovated St Basil's Cathedral, (They finished renovating the cathedral before I went to Moscow,) B- When I last went to Moscow, they had been ...
1
vote
2answers
157 views

Past Perfect Continuous vs Past Continuous/Past Simple

Doing a grammar task I found this: A: Did you go out last night? B: No, 1) _____(work) all day, so I 2) _____(stay) in and 3) _____(watch) TV. The key says that the only option here is 1) had been ...
2
votes
1answer
1k views

past continuous or past simple

At the dentist's: I was on time for my dentist's appointment, but the dentist was still busy with another patient, so I sat in the waiting room and read some of the old magazines lying there. All ...
0
votes
1answer
51 views

past continuous or present perfect continuous

If I play football since I was eight years old and still I am playing football I should say I have been playing football since I was eight. But if I started playing football when I was eight and then ...
3
votes
1answer
39 views

Past Perfect Continuous vs Past Continuous difference in meaning

In my grammar text book there is a sentence describing Past Perfect vs Past Perfect Continuous difference. I understand the difference between those two tenses, but there is another thing that makes ...
4
votes
5answers
1k views

What is the difference between “was going every day” and “would go every day”?

What is the difference between these two phrases? "He was going for a morning walk every day" vs "He would go for a morning walk every day"
1
vote
1answer
46 views

is the past continuous with a duration better than the past perfect continuous in that case?

I was looking for him for 8 hours when I have found him I had been looking for him for 8 hours when I have found him Are both sentences equivalent in meaning? I think the second one stress the ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

I was meeting vs. I met

I was meeting some friends at a bar. I met some friends at a bar. was meeting - past continuous met - simple past In my opinion, I prefer to use the latter sentence because I don't normally hear ...
1
vote
2answers
2k views

Past Progressive and Simple Past with the Time Clause (While)

While he was taking a shower, his dogs were eating his steaks. (That is the correct sentence according to the website that I visited.) We use the past progressive with the past progressive to show ...
1
vote
1answer
2k views

I was going to say

Joe: Y’know, I don’t think that people really appreciate their parents until they get older. I mean, at least I can say that about myself. And I think it’s true of, y’know, here in America. ...
2
votes
2answers
182 views

past simple, past continuous and past perfect continuous

Am I correct? Yesterday lunchtime we had a bust-up. This is just stating a fact. The bust-up happened at lunchtime. Yesterday lunchtime we had been having a bust-up. This is emphasizing the ...
0
votes
1answer
373 views

is there any difference between saw or was seeing in this example?

If someone was treated by a psychiatrist, is there any difference between : He saw a psychiatrist or he was seeing a psychiatrist? Can either be used?
2
votes
1answer
54 views

“When I was born my mother WORKED / WAS WORKING as a nurse” – interrupted event or…?

When I was born my mother worked as a nurse. or When I was born my mother was working as a nurse. Is there any other difference than the job being permanent/temporary? Is this an example of an ...
0
votes
1answer
35 views

is the past simple possible here?

This is an example from a grammar book: When I was learning to drive I was living with my parents. Is it possible to say: When I was learning to drive I lived with my parents? Usually ...
0
votes
2answers
40 views

Aspects of the past continuous

"In July she was working at MacDonald's." I am not sure which aspect of the past continuous applies in this case. Action in progress around a specific time = in July she was working there, we don't ...
0
votes
2answers
712 views

is it correct to use past simple in a moment in the past?

There is a sentence that makes me confused about using cases of past simple and past continuous. one of the past continuous definition is that it's used to describe actions happening at a moment in ...
3
votes
2answers
715 views

Can I use “Have been” with “Until” in this sentence?

My intention is to explain that I used to be stressed and depressed but then I read an article about stress relief techniques and that helped me. Is this sentence using "Have been" and "Until" ...
2
votes
1answer
697 views

is it possible to use the past continuous with before?

Is it possible to use the past continuous with before? For example: We were watching television before you arrived last night. Or is simple past the only option?
0
votes
1answer
6k views

the sun shone or the sun was shining

I would like to know which one is preferable, or are both possible? It is raining now but this morning the sun was shining brightly or it is raining now but this morning the sun shone brightly.
0
votes
1answer
147 views

How to undsestand “hence the name by which they are known and ending with the Lateran Treaty of 1929”?

source: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Capture_of_Rome The whole sentence is: The agreements were signed in the Lateran Palace, hence the name by which they are known and ending with the Lateran ...
0
votes
2answers
51 views

Why is past continuous used instead of simple present in this general statement?

This is exactly the kind of question ELL is hoping to avoid. We don’t want to become a proofreading service, where we are bombarded with sentences or paragraphs from resumés, school essays, technical ...
0
votes
1answer
50 views

past continuous vs past perfect continuous

What is the difference between these two sentences? I took my car to the garage because it wasn't working properly. This means that at that moment my car wasn't working properly. I took my car to ...
0
votes
1answer
63 views

difference between past continuous and simple past in this case

I have another question about the use of the past continuous and simple past. These are both examples from grammar books, and I want to know why in the first example, the past continuous is used, and ...
1
vote
1answer
889 views

“Two years ago I studied/was working…” – difference in meaning

I would really like to know the difference between these two sentences: Two years ago I was working in New York. Two years ago I studied English in England. The way I interpret them: ...
1
vote
1answer
2k views

Did vs was doing vs had done vs had been doing

I worked a teacher before but now I work a translator. What would be the slight difference if, instead of worked, we say was working, had worked, had been working? What does each tense mean and ...
2
votes
1answer
156 views

Past Continuous vs Past Simple

Is the sentence "He repaired his car the whole day" grammatical or not? Can Past Simple (He repaired) be used with the whole day instead of Past Continuous (He was repairing)? And if both ...
2
votes
1answer
71 views

Past Continuous and past perfect continuous for native English speakers

According to Martin Hewing's Advanced English Grammar: The difference between past continuous and past perfect continuous is as follows: When we met Simon and Pat, they had been riding.(=we met ...
1
vote
1answer
81 views

Past SImple vs Past Continuous

While practising past tenses I have encountered a couple of confusing dialogues. A: How was your holiday? B: Awful! It __________ (rain) the whole time. The key says that the right answer is ...
0
votes
1answer
63 views

Can the past perfect be replaced by the past continuous in this case?

Someone in the news died today and the following line was used: He had been suffering from ill health throughout 2017. Is it possible to say he was suffering from ill health throughout 2017?
0
votes
1answer
967 views

He was working or worked for my father in the 1990s

Tom, who was working for my father in the 1990s, is now living in Ohio. Is it correct or should it be in Past Simple? I think it is correct because it is an action which was in progress in the past ...
0
votes
2answers
4k views

The baby was sleeping or slept?

I'm having a misunderstanding regarding Past Simple and Past Prog. The baby was sleeping peacefully through the night. or The baby slept peacefully through the night. Are both work? If not, ...
1
vote
1answer
100 views

Past progressive and past simple with while

I have a confusion regarding this Grammar rule, it's all about these two examples. I'm totally confused not because it's hard, but because the two answers are supposed to be the same, but they are ...
5
votes
1answer
139 views

“If you explained what you ___ trying to achieve, I would …”

I've written the next sentence If you explained what you are trying to achieve, I would recommend a kind of workaround. and it has raised doubts about the tense I should have used in the ...