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Questions tagged [past-tense]

This tag is for questions about the usage of the past tense in English.

13
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5answers
4k views

“Tea drinking” vs. “tea drunk” in this context

Which of these two is preferred? A: Tea drinking is a British custom B: Tea drunk is a British custom P.S. What is it called when we say tea drinking instead of drinking tea? Also, can we ...
0
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2answers
25 views

“was acquainted with” or “have acquainted with”?

I can not decide which one is correct or more accurate for using. I have acquainted with structure of remote control in primary school. I was acquainted with structure of remote control in ...
0
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1answer
27 views

Can I use past perfect in this response?

I would like to know if I can use past perfect in this response: Did not know that you would contact me again !!! I had tried to contact so many times and did not receive any answer that I ...
2
votes
1answer
35 views

It would be a great opportunity for someone like me who is working full time

I found out that I could be a part-time or a full-time student. It would be a great opportunity for someone like me who is working full time. I am writing a personal statement. I found out that I ...
1
vote
1answer
26 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 ...
0
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1answer
52 views

“Have you known” or “Did you know”?

First of all, I know it has been mentioned before but I'm not sure which is correct. I've been learning about the Past Simple and the Past Perfect and if I've understood correctly, well, in high level:...
0
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1answer
29 views

Suitable verb form in the past tense sentence

There's the next sentence: "I saw Mr Brown ..... the building at two o'clock." leave / to leave / having left Which option would be the most appropriate to put in and why ? I really want to put ...
0
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2answers
15 views

Is it possible to match both tenses in this sentence

Is it possible to write I saw that you have not accepted my paypal payment yet Saw is past, have not is present perfect( the action begins in the past but ends in" present " ) and in this ...
2
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1answer
48 views

Past Tense or Past Continuous Tense with precise time

There's a sentence like: I ____ television at 7pm last night. a) was watching b) watched c) watch Can we use a) and b) to complete the sentence? Some friends here said a) because there'...
4
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1answer
38 views

Why “did” and not “had done”?

He had relocated the same day as I did after switching university. We kept in touch regularly. Why did and not had done if both relocated the same day, same tense should be used?
1
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1answer
11 views

Tense consistency with “think that…”

Can I say I think he was sick last night or do I have to say I thought he was sick last night.
2
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1answer
80 views

Would been vs would have been

Having a hard time telling the difference between these, and which ones are wrong. 1) 0.5 seconds later and he would been dead. 2) 0.5 seconds later and he would have been dead. 3) 0.5 seconds ...
1
vote
1answer
33 views

Correct tense after I come to a country

Imagine I go to another country on a vacation to visit my friends. When I talk to the local people, should I say: "I come here to visit my friends" or "I came here to visit my friends" Also,...
0
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1answer
15 views

Question about simple past tense that is not so simple in my head

Consider this simple sentence that is not based on real-life experience: During the concert, Mike shouted until his voice was heard by the singer. I am also confused by this type of sentence, ...
0
votes
1answer
39 views

what do you think about these 4 past perfects?

Gillian visited (to visit) her friend Ann in Hull. She went (to go) there by train. Before she arrived (to arrive), Gillian had fallen (to fall) asleep and nearly missed the station. After she had ...
1
vote
2answers
28 views

Is it possible to use past simple instead of past perfect in “…all the washing up HAD BEEN DONE…”?

There's the following sentence in my Grammar book: It was a lovely surprise to find that all the washing-up HAD BEEN DONE while I was asleep. The only answer mentioned in the answer key is past ...
0
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1answer
42 views

i repaired vs i was repairing

dialog 1. my friend asks me general question "What did you do yesterday?" and for example my car is broken and the damage is to big so it can not be fixed within one day.Do i have to use past simple ...
0
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1answer
27 views

I wouldn't mind if she goes/went rampage?

Which one is correct? I wouldn't mind if she goes rampage on him. I wouldn't mind if she went rampage on him.
0
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0answers
29 views

the meaning of past perfect continuous in that case

What indeed? While she was walking through the forest, she saw a wolf strolling slowly towards her, humming something to himself. A minute or so earlier, the wolf had been watching her from behind a ...
0
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1answer
43 views

I wish I could done(do something)

Which sentence is correct 1 or 2 ? First sentence is correct in English Grammar In Use Book at Unit 41. But i didn't understand why they didn't use heard instead of hear. I hear the party was ...
2
votes
2answers
58 views

Why aren't all these verbs in the same tense?

We have decided to call it a day. We are thankful for everyone that has come to our shows, screamed at the top of their lungs, bought our music, wore our tee shirt and joined the spirit of the band ...
0
votes
1answer
81 views

“It was the first time I did” or “It was the first time I do”?

I did something in the past. Now, when I mention it to others, should I say: It was the first time I did that. or: It was the first time I do that. Which part of English grammar should I have ...
0
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1answer
37 views

Can you explain what is wrong with this sentence: “Being asked about the experiment, I encourage other people to have a try,”

Today in class we studied participle clauses. Students were asked to transform with sentence "When I am asked about the experiment, I encourage other people to have a try." The correct textbook answer ...
0
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1answer
17 views

is or was known

I'd like to know whether is or was should be used in the following: Bruce Lee is / was known as a kungfu master. Since he is dead, I'd say "Bruce Lee was a kungfu master," but we know him to be a ...
1
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1answer
40 views

I decided to go whole hog and <bought> or <buy> her a pistol

I think I have spotted a grammar mistake in a novel. I decided to go whole-hog and bought her a pistol and holster like mine, also. Source:Gold Fever By William Post Gold Fever Is and bought ...
0
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1answer
38 views

Progressive tense with a fixed date

Rhythm will be closing permanently from 5pm on 21st December. Many thanks to all our customers for your support over the years, for our market stall, monthly mail-order catalogue, and online. If you ...
0
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1answer
68 views

Not only DID he exceed/he EXCEEDED, but he HAD also drank alcohol. (Past tense)

How come sentence1 is more correct than sentence2, in terms of BETTER FIT with its relative clause? Not only DID he exceed the speed limit, but he HAD also drank alcohol. (From a website) Vs....
1
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1answer
57 views

Which tense to use in the following context? [closed]

I lived in Mexico from 1990 to 2000. Or I had lived in Mexico from 1990 to 2000. Or I have lived in Mexico from 1990 to 2000. Which of these are grammatically correct?
1
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1answer
34 views

What was your name vs. What is your name?

Quite often when I am talking over phone with some customer service representative, if they'd need to ask my name again they'd go like What was your name Similarly I heard my teacher asking ...
1
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2answers
93 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 ...
1
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1answer
42 views

we got there just as the shop was ____ (closed/ closing)which is the correct answer? [closed]

Fill in the blanks with the correct answer. We got there just as the shop was ____ (closed/ closing). Which is the correct answer?
1
vote
1answer
31 views

“I haven't“ VS ”I have not"

I have left home long time and not returned to home. I can say I have not been home for long time. But I think I can't say I haven't been home for long time. Because "haven't" means something ...
0
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1answer
30 views

using “be” in the past tense

I guess the usage of "be" in the passage below is grammatically correct even though the whole narration is in the past tense. Can you, please, explain to me why it is correct and why it is not "was" ...
1
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1answer
22 views

What is the best choice in this case past continuous or simple

While she was driving to work every day she was listening or listened to languages CDs In the test the answer is listened because the action is completed now: she does not listen to these cds ...
0
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2answers
14 views

kind of past tense

For example,I want to tell a memory of past tense and explain how i used to take shower in wild camping.Is "used to" the only option? Is it Ok to use simple past tense? I've learnt English through ...
0
votes
1answer
206 views

“I have written a book” or “I wrote a book” in this sentence? [duplicate]

Past perfect vs Past simple problems always baffle me.. When I want to talk about my experience of writing a book and getting a revision on it in the past, should I use past perfect? or simple past? ...
0
votes
1answer
30 views

“Do you watch X” vs “Did you watch X”

So when you ask someone Do you watch X? you ask if X is still running, right? If it has stopped premiering, then does the question rephrase to Did you watch X? ?
0
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2answers
38 views

Should it be Has or had?

May I know should it be has or had lost? Lucy did not have any money for lunch as she had or has lost her wallet in the morning. Thank you.
1
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2answers
25 views

Can you omit ''Did'' in question sentences?

''Did you go to school today?'' Do you say ''You go to school today?'' in casual conversations as the same meaning with the above? My friend is not native English speaker, and she asks me about ...
0
votes
1answer
31 views

Why did the author use past continuous in that sentence

I came from a scene that is more punk than the garage scene. The first concerts I was going to were punk, like at the MIROITRIE.for a year Then I went to Canada for a year Why "was going"? Why past ...
0
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1answer
44 views

Past Simple vs. Past Perfect (question about two sentences)

In the sentences below, would it be correct to use Past Simple instead of Past Perfect and retain the same meaning? Is it possible, for example, in American English because, as far as I know, ...
0
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2answers
34 views

Is it okay to say “I (should) better do X” in past-tense narrative?

Example sentences: From now on, I better focus on the outside world. What would I find on the other side? From now on, I should better focus on the outside world. What would I find on the ...
1
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1answer
70 views

“I saw him TAKE it” and “I thought he KNEW it”?

I'm confused by the use of these two tenses "I saw him TAKE it" and "I thought he KNEW it" Why I saw him + infinity form verb but I thought he + past tense??
0
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4answers
104 views

Why is it “He has appeared in several films” instead of “He appeared”?

I have seen this sentence in an English book. My brother is an actor. He has appeared in several films. I can't find out that why we use present perfect here. Can someone explain it, please? I ...
0
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1answer
56 views

Have done vs Did

I wonder which of these sentences sound more natural to the ears of native English speakers. I have done/finished/received my education from high school to college in the Netherlands. or I did/...
1
vote
1answer
49 views

Use of were or have been [closed]

Which sentence is grammatically correct? There were no rains for a long time. Or There have been no rains for a long time.
2
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2answers
36 views

Will it be better to use past simple or present perfect

Do you remember my name? I have bought some records from you in the past. Shall I use past simple instead of the present perfect? I think perfect is better as it has a relevance even now I don't ...
1
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2answers
73 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 ...
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3answers
69 views

Can we use present perfect with a specific time?

For example, if I say "Today I have washed the dishes" or "Yesterday I have walked the dog", it comes off as wrong. This is why I understand that present perfect doesn't go with specific times. Past ...
0
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0answers
19 views

Choosing correct tense for dependent clauses when casting a present-tense statement into past

Putting present-simple statements in the past is my pain. In particular, I always stumble upon which tense to chose for dependent clauses: Right now the teacher is asking students one by one some ...