Questions tagged [perfect-constructions]

Perfect constructions employ a form of HAVE as an auxiliary and the past participle of a lexical verb to express past events as a current state.

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Should I write “expertise I will have gained” or “expertise I have gained”?

"Using the teachings, skills and expertise I have gained through this course I’d like to produce..." Do I need to add "I will have gained here" or rather not? Even though skills are not yet acquired,...
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“Has someone smoked” vs. “Has someone been smoking”

If I come into a room full of smoke, should I ask: A: "Has someone smoked here?" or: B: "Has someone been smoking here?" I can literally see the smoke, but the person who was smoking has ...
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Improve the bracketed part of the sentence

Last week Tim went camping with his friends. They seemed (to have a good time). To having a good time. To have had a good time. To be having a good time. No improvement. ...
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Had done / had been doing

I had been eating before I visited you. I had eaten before I visited you. How do you know when to use either of them?
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are these present perfect a good choice in my text

"My parcel is at last in France!!! unbelievable!" did I say today. I did not expect to receive it any more, since it was sent 2 months ago. I have thought "It is lost for ever". ...
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Present perfect continuous to express something that has very recently finished

Is this sentence idiomatic I've seen him. I have or had been thinking for a long time that I would never see it again until today (meaning I don't think that now because I saw him today) I think ...
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Present Perfect Tense with State Verbs

Can I use the Present Perfect SIMPLE with State Verbs like “Thought” and “Know”? Like, for example, “I’ve thought you were my friend” and “I’ve known she was nice.” Can I use it? If I can’t, why?
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Present Perfect's explanations vs What it really is?

First of all, I wish to say I'm kind of confused about the explanations for the present perfect and what really is the present perfect. I've came across many sites saying that the Present Perfect is: ...
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“Did you ever go?” or “Have you ever been?”

Which answers would you pick as correct? Is it possible that both (Did you ever go/ Have you ever been?) are correct? A: France is the best country I've ever been. Did you ever go/ Have you ever been?...
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Can I use the past perfect without an action described by past simple?

Can I use the past perfect without an action described by past simple? For example: Alex: There were people at the cinema? Me: No, because it had just opened. Another example Alex: What had you ...
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To be or to have been

The parcel appears to have been opened before it was delivered. Could you let me know if it is possible to use 'to be opened' instead of 'to have been opened', and if not, why?
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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 ...
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Why does this infinitive have perfect tense?

She [my mother] quadrupled her already fabulous record and she was awarded the fairest prize of all - a ride in an army airplane. Oh, we were proud kids! Even vicariously this was an eminence we ...
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Past Perfect tense in “if clause” type 3

"If he had come here yesterday at 5 p.m., he might have seen his sister." What does this sentence mean and which situation do I imagine with this sentence? Do I imagine the situation that he came ...
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Which tense should l use?

"You are late! I have waited for 20 minutes" Or "You are late! I waited for 20 minutes" We are told if you see "for+ specific time" you should use present perfect so the first one must be true. ...
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Do I have to use the perfect infitnitive

I was taught, that if we had some action which can hhapen before some moment in the future, I had to use Perfect. For example: I will have done it by the morning. Some days ago I had to say a ...
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Why can't I use Present Perfect Continuous or vice versa Present Perfect forms in these sentences?

He has traveled so much recently that we have not managed to see each other much and I have met someone else. (why not "has been traveling") I have been eating fish and fruit since I got here. (...
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Soon with Past Perfect

Can I use “soon” in the following manner? I had some garlic at lunch and smelled bad. But thankfully, the smell has soon worn off, and I smell fine now.
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done / having been done + once

Having been chased by street dogs once, he doesn't dare to take that path. An example relating to "___ (tell) many times, he still made the same mistakes" form http://forum.wordreference.com/threads/...
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She hoped to have done

I saw a sentence She hoped to have done Or a sentence, created with the same structure. I don'tunderstand how it works. Then I saw a full version of it: She hoped that she had done So, it's like a ...
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It is able to be possible/ She is able to have drunk

If "can" and "be able to" are interchangable sometimes, for example: She can speak Latin = She is able to speak Latin Can "be able to" be used instead of "can" in: She can't have drunk that much ...
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Future Pluperfect Tense

I was reading this question Future pluperfect and was really interested in how real is the Future Pluperfect tense. I found this information: This is from "The Future Pluperfect: Double Tenses in ...
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hadn’t felt / hadn’t been feeling (in context)

Question with an assignment. Instructions: Complete the sentences with the correct forms of the verbs in brackets. Use the Past Simple, Past Perfect Simple, Past Perfect Continuous. Mum ...
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Could have - Would have been able - Could have been able

Is there any difference between: I could have done it I would have been able to do it I could have been able to do it I think the third one is excessive because it has two the same elements of ...
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Can/Could have done = Can/Could it be so that

I recently saw such a phrase: I can have done it Can it be a contraction of It can be so that I have done it ? The same with I could have done it = It could be so that I had done it Or these ...
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Could have escaped VS Couldn't have escaped

I am stuck with perfect infinitive: I could have done = I had a posisibility to do but I didn't Then conversely it should mean I couldn't have done = I didn't have a posisibility to do but I did it ...
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had been and the day before

Are the following sentences grammatically correct? He asked me if I was depressed the day before. He asked me if I had been depressed the day before. Please explain. Thanks!
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“I have lived…” talking about the past

My student said "My sister has lived in China", and of course I thought she still lived there, but then he said "now she lives in England", I said, "but you said she has lived in China, which means ...
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“Julie has cooked dinner Let's go and eat!” (PrPerf vs PrPerfCont)

Is it OK to use Present Perfect Continuous here, just like with "have you been crying? Your eyes are wet!" (crying-result-tears) ===>"Julie has been cooking, Let's go and eat!"(cooking-result-baked ...
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“Had been + ing” or “have been + ing”

I’ve learned to use present perfect continuous for an action that began in past and is still continuing and past perfect continuous for an action that began in past and ended in past too before ...
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“He found the bicycle that he had lost yesterday.” Past perfect with yesterday?

He found the bicycle that he had lost yesterday. Is this sentence correct? If so, which is the intended meaning: He lost the bicycle yesterday and he found it after that. He lost the bicycle ...
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“they got married” vs “they have got married”

Is They got married the same as They have got married Is word "have" is ommited from the first sentence? But both have the same meaning. If not, why is got used with an adjective "married"?
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Difference between “I had already ordered” and “I already ordered”

I forgot that I had already ordered this book when I received it today. I forgot that I already ordered this book when I received it today. Think both are correct. The first means that the order ...
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Future perfect usage. Is the sentence correct?

When will you have collected enough money? I am talking about the time in future when you have collected enough money... I guess future perfect should be used here.
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When + Past Perfect

Does Past Perfect sound good here? This sentence is from the book, but I am not sure why we need Past Perfect here. It would make more sense to use Past Simple there. He must, he thought, have ...
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232 views

Understanding “haven’t got very far” in this sentence

When I saw this sentence, there seems to be something weird to me. I got this sentence from Oxford Learner’s Dictionaries, entry number 17. I haven't got very far with the book I'm reading. 'Got' ...
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Did you notice that I had changed some passages/I changed some passages in my article?

Context: I sent one of my articles to a friend of mine a week ago and yesterday I resent it with some corrections. So, today I am talking to my friend on the phone and ask: 1 - Did you notice that ...
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Perfect Forms Of State Verbs

We use perfect to denote our finished,fulfilled actions for example. I have done my homework İt implies that the action has been achieved,fulfilled and now my homework is done. I have been here for ...
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“my being” vs. “my having been” (in my younger days)

I am having trouble with a practice exam question. Here is the text from the question: The good fortune of (my being/my having been?) your student in my younger days has helped me greatly in my ...
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is past perfect continuous used in this case to emphasize the cause of something

We did not drink very much at all (one vodka each) but other young people had been drinking heavily all evening. Some of the dancers looked quite drunk. I don't understand why it is past perfect ...
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Perfect non-deictic: “For a long moment he thought he had gone too far” vs “…he have gone too far”

I'm trying to understand why in this sentence from a book I'm reading the past perfect is used instead of the present perfect: For a long moment he thought he had gone too far. vs For a ...
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Is 'She has been taken' active or passive voice?

She has been taken I want to know - Is it passive voice or active voice? If it is passive, then what is object, subject, verb in this sentence? If it's not a passive voice, then we use 2 two past ...
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We had been dating

I have a friend practicing English. He asked this: "We had been dating for three years before we had married". And, "I have been studying English since I have met Sally": Are these both usages right? ...
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Can present perfect be used for events occurred long time ago?

I had a discussion with my mate about the usage of present perfect tense, and he raised the point that it can only be used for recent past events. First off, it's illogical, because we can't agree ...
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Which tense should I use in this sentence?

I want to say that someone is my favorite actor for the last 10 years, and that he still is. Do I say He is my favorite actor for the last 10 years. He has been my favorite actor for the last 10 ...
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What is the origin of perfect continous?

I know we use present perfect tense for past actions which have present effects. We use it for unfinished actions which started in the past and still continuing as well. I have observed that we use ...
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Correct error in perfect tense

I'm self-studying English and in an exercise I'm asked to correct the errors in perfect tense of a series of sentences. One of them is the following Supposing they would have got married, wouldn't ...
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The use of the Future Perfect Continuous Passive in 'The apples will have been being eaten by him'

The apples will have been being eaten by him. This sentence above was offered in my English class as an example of the future perfect continuous tense. This seems to me too awkward to be correct. ...
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Using “when” with Present Perfect

I have never heard that we could use "when" with Perfect tenses especially with Present Perfect before. We use Past Simple when we are talking about the time. But today I have found one example: ...
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“Since they partnered up they have made a lot of money”

Since they partnered up they have made a lot of money. Or should it be Since they had partnered up they have made a lot of money. because first they partnered up and only then they have made a ...

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