Questions tagged [past-simple]

Questions related to the past simple, simple past or preterite, which is mainly used to describe events in the past.

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18 views

You’ll tell me what you “learned”/“have learned"

For example, I lent my friend a book. Which one of these two sentences makes more sense to say? So you’ll tell me what you learned. So you’ll me what you have learned.
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18 views

We’ve read or we read?

Books we pretend we have read. What if instead of have read, I simply wrote we read ? Would the meaning of the sentence change?
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2answers
69 views

Past perfect for two simultaneous events “Her business had proved that it was possible to be sustainable and profitable at the same time.”

Could anyone please explain me why we use past perfect instead of past simple before “that” in the sentence below? As I understand, we use past perfect in a sequence of events to show that the action ...
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21 views

But once we begin Vs But once we began

But once we began to work hard, poverty would vanish. What happens if we use begin instead of begin and will instead of would, means like below: But once we begin to work hard, poverty will vanish. ...
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3answers
44 views

The difference between: I’ve been rescued and I was rescued? [duplicate]

Can you tell me what is the difference between: I have been rescued and I was rescued I know the first one is in the present perfect tense (so it’s an unstated time in the past and has an ...
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1answer
26 views

Is there any difference between “since when did it become…” and “since when has it become…”? [duplicate]

Could you tell me if there is any difference in meaning between since when did it become and since when has it become? For example: Person A: I'm going to the dentist tomorrow. It's such a pleasure. ...
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30 views

Wish with would or past simple [duplicate]

I have trouble with the verb 'wish'. Searching this website, I could not find an answer to my questions, which is 'when we use past simple and when would?' a) I wish I would live in LA --> This is ...
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42 views

I have never thought you are ideal. / I never thought you were ideal

Is it correct explanation of an each sentence (in the brackets)? I have never thought you are ideal. (it's about the present situation that started in the past) I never thought you were ideal. (it's ...
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2answers
92 views

When can I use present perfect for old events?

In English Grammar in Use, it is said that we have to use past simple instead of present perfect for things that are not recent or new: Use the past simple (not the present perfect) for things that ...
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1answer
21 views

Why does the author choose past simple instead of present perfect in “all the leads went nowhere”?

Detour Records have been trying to track down members of this band since the 90s but all the leads went nowhere. Then fast forward twenty years and after doing more research and from reading a post on ...
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2answers
74 views

never seen a video that wasn't/hasn't been disliked [closed]

I've never seen a video on YouTube that hasn't been disliked by people. I've never seen a video on YouTube that wasn't disliked by people. Which one is correct?
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present perfect vs past tense usage difference [closed]

The house has belonged to him since his birth. The house belonged to him since his birth. Which sentence is correct? If both are correct what is the difference in meaning between these two sentences?...
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The tallest building I have ever seen was in New York. Is the use of 'was' acceptable here? [duplicate]

A student has written The tallest building I have ever seen was in New York. I know the expected formation is The tallest building I have ever seen is in New York. But is the first sentence ...
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2answers
27 views

Correct usage of simple past and present perfect?

I have really been struggling with past simple and present perfect exercises today. what I know is mostly: simple past is used for finished actions made in the past and not related to the present and ...
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21 views

worked vs was working [duplicate]

Are these examples interchangeable or it's better to use the second one if we say "he was living in Seattle", because there is emphasis of temporary action? Tom worked in a hotel when he ...
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21 views

didn't pay attention vs wasn't paying attention

As I understand, following sentences have the same meaning, haven't they? There is only a small difference that the first one says about the fact (I didn’t pay attention), but the second one says ...
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1answer
30 views

The past perfect event happens before which sentence? The next one or the previous one?

If there is no such word as before or when, how do I know when the past perfect event takes place? I tried to figure out the context, but which is the context, the previous sentence or the next ...
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14 views

Using of 'past perfect' in indirect narration

We know that in indirect narration, if the reporting verb is in the past tense, for the reported verb simple past is changed to past perfect. For example, Direct narration: I said to you, "Did ...
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1answer
27 views

I've realized that I had sent/sent you this task before - Past Perfect or Past Simple?

Which tense should I use in this sentence and why? I've realized that I had sent/sent you this task before. The context: a couple of days ago my student told me she had sent me some homework that I ...
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11 views

Past Perfect Tense or Simple Past Tense for two Independent Clauses

They had searched through the big trunks in the attic and found clothes for them to wear. This sentence contains two independent clauses: They had searched through the big trunks in the attic. They ...
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2answers
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“I had just two flights last year, and I'd had/I had 4 or 6 of them the year before” - Past Simple or Past Perfect?

All grammar books teach us that we have to use Past Perfect for the action that happened before another action in the past, but I feel that it doesn't always make sense. For example, in this sentence, ...
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17 views

Can we use present continuous tense and simple past in a sentence?

Is this sentence grammatically correct? "I've been going to school offline as the classes started a week ago."
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1answer
26 views

met vs have met

I have a question about simple past and present perfect. This sentence: Her husband is a very nice man. I have liked him ever since I met him. Why do we use "met" and we don't use "...
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2answers
72 views

“I watched the movie many times when…” vs “I had watched the movie many times when…”

Could you tell if there is any difference in meaning between the following sentences? I watched the movie many times when I was a child. I had watched the movie many times when I was a child. Are ...
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25 views

past perfect or past simple with work

is there any difference between these sentences? I had worked hard so I needed a break I worked hard so I needed a break
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1answer
27 views

Which answer is right? [closed]

So I had a lesson today and the teacher gave us a question, A: What is wrong? B: I ___________ a glass (break). My question is, which answer should I give her? I have broken a glass I broke a glass. ...
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2answers
25 views

Do I use the simple tense or continuous in this case?

It's full day and I'm interacting with a co-worker: Don't mind if I yawn a lot while you're talking. I didn't sleep / haven't slept all night. Don't mind if I'm yawning a lot while you're talking. I ...
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1answer
24 views

Present Perfect vs. Past Simple when there is still a chance for the subject to do what they are being asked about

The context: I am looking for a book at home. I can't find it anywhere. I think my roommate could help me. The roommate is still at home. I ask him/her "Have you seen the book?" I think ...
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22 views

how you feel feel/ felt

Context: Asking someone if he told his parents about him feeling stressed. Did you tell him how you feel? or Did you tell him how you felt?
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19 views

past simple and past continuous in this context

which one is correct? "when I got the job offer I was still working in my old company, which I'd worked for 7 years" "when I got the job offer I still worked in my old company, which I'...
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1answer
24 views

“He/she is the first to…” vs. “he/she was the first to…”

Could you tell me if there is any difference in meaning between the following sentences? Neil Armstrong is the first man to step on the Moon surface. Neil Armstrong was the first man to step on the ...
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4answers
77 views

Difference between Past Simple and Past Continuous in a sentence

I was running a test and made a mistake in the sentence "They lived in Germany when they were young." I used Past Continuous instead of Past Simple, that is "They were living in Germany ...
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1answer
48 views

played guitar/had played guitar at the party

He is the man who played guitar at the party. This is stating a fact. He is the man who was playing guitar at the party. This emphasizes the duration, but the meaning is essentially the same as the ...
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Questions regarding the differences between simple and progressive past

I have a few sentences in which I don't know which tense to use. In the first sentence, I want to describe how a zoom meeting ended, but everybody stayed. So should I say: I saw that everybody was ...
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2answers
27 views

“I didn't have a laptop before” vs. “I haven't had a laptop before” in context

Could you tell me if there is any difference between the past simple and the present perfect in the following context. I've just won a tablet. I haven't had a tablet before. I've just won a tablet. I ...
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1answer
42 views

Would remain or Remained?

Throughout Mum's pregnancy, which had been textbook, he had noted Mum's smaller belly, and had suspected something wasn't quite right. But without all the whiz-bang technology we have today— ...
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1answer
40 views

Is there any difference in meaning between the past simple and the past continuous when used before “till” or “until”?

Could you tell me if there is any difference in meaning between the past simple and the past continuous when used before till? For example: I worked till midnight and then went to bed. I was working ...
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1answer
22 views

Five months ago, I {decided/have decided} to learn how to play the piano

Five months ago, I {decided/have decided} to learn how to play the piano. Is "Five months ago" a definite time? I have read that when there is a definite time, I should use the simple past ...
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257 views

“Until now I didn't realize that…” vs. “until now I hadn't realized that…” [duplicate]

Could you tell me if there is any difference in meaning between the following sentences? Until now I didn't realize that you can sing so well. Until now I hadn't realized that you can sing so well. ...
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1answer
10 views

handled (past tense used for future events)

Why is this sentence correct: If not handled well, it may result in a fire. Why use past tense? How to know when to use it?
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1answer
23 views

what's the difference between since + present perfect and since + past simple when since is not used as because

What's the difference between since + present perfect and since + past simple when since is not used as because? I've seen both being used but never really understood what's the difference -between ...
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31 views

Can someone help me with these examples of got and gotten?

I've got 2 questions. Is it correct to say: He's got me something / he's got me a present? Or can you just say: He got me something / he got me a present? My second question: When someone gave you ...
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1answer
14 views

past participle and past simple

The paintings have been proven to be fakes The paintings proved to be fakes Questions: What is the difference between using has been proven and proved? I know one is a past participle and one is ...
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1answer
23 views

Did I use correct tenses in this sentence?

Regarding my competence in speaking about this topic, I could say that: I learned German at school, or I was learning German at School. I studied German, or I was studying German.
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3answers
50 views

Past simple and present simple

Should I say “I saw the kid. He is sleeping on the couch” or “I see the kid. He is sleeping on the couch”
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1answer
44 views

She fell off her bike three times this week vs She has fallen off her bike three times this week

The book I'm studying gives as the correct answer the following sentence : She fell off her bike three times this week. Is present perfect simple incorrect in this case? (She has fallen over three ...
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2answers
46 views

Can “before” be equal to “when” in certain contexts?

There are the following sentences: "I had been waiting for three months before they finally sent me an answer" "He had been waiting for the bus for 10 minutes before it arrived" ...
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1answer
25 views

“I made sure we choose/chose items that doesn’t use the most plastic.”

In the following sentence: Yesterday, when I was shopping with my mum, I made sure we choose items that doesn’t use the most plastic. Which is correct: to say I made sure we (choose) or (chose)?
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1answer
60 views

is it ok to use “is” with past participle?

I prefer using "is" sometimes with past participle. ex- Your screen is frozen. Your case is picked. your device is repaired. in both the examples, I consider frozen, picked as an adjective ...
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29 views

a matter of style or a necessity to use past simple in this text

South London called Broadway Sound. Early on the morning of August 12th 1982 the band, comprising of Colin Swan, Geno Buckmaster, Brian Grover and their trusty roadie ‘Robbo’ assembled at the tiny ...

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