Questions tagged [progressive-aspect]

Questions related to the grammatical aspect that expresses an incomplete action or a state at a specific point in time. For specific tenses, see the tags 'present-progressive', 'present-continuous', 'future-progressive', 'past-continuous' and 'perfect-continuous'.

Filter by
Sorted by
Tagged with
12
votes
2answers
110k views

“Have been doing” and “have done”

What's the difference between I have been playing tennis for five years. and I have played tennis for five years. Are they grammatically correct? If yes, how are they different in meaning/...
12
votes
2answers
2k views

Stative verbs in the progressive

I posted a question today about "Have to / having to?"and I used the verb "find" in the progressive.: I'm finding more and more that "having to" is also used instead of "have to". Someone comments ...
11
votes
3answers
15k views

This is the first time vs. This is the last time

Why do we use the present perfect with This is the first time, but the present simple/continuous with This is the last time, i.e. This is the first time I have done it. vs. This is the last ...
10
votes
3answers
19k views

Have to / having to?

As fas as I know, "have to" is the commoner version of the two, but I'm finding more and more that "having to" is also used instead of "have to". She has to / is having to look after herself now. ...
8
votes
3answers
26k views

“is still being used” versus “is still used”

I once asked a question with the title: Is the word cloths still being used? And someone edited it to: Is the word cloths still used? Why is the first progressive one wrong?
8
votes
2answers
5k views

Present Perfect and Past Progressive with wait

Imagine that you're waiting for your friend X and you finally meet him. Is it better to use Past Progressive or Present Perfect here? I've been waiting for you for 5 hours. or I was waiting for ...
7
votes
2answers
525 views

“we will discontinue the feature” vs. “we will be discontinuing the feature”

From the Poetry Foundation website's Favorites page: Due to needed upgrades to our website, we will be discontinuing our Favorites feature and user accounts effective Sunday, March 27, 2016. We ...
7
votes
3answers
25k views

what's the difference between did and was doing?

Here are examples of the sentences. What is the difference between them? They seem to be almost the same to me so I don’t exactly understand the difference. We worked from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm ...
6
votes
4answers
8k views

“I will be loving you 'til we're 70” vs. “I will love you 'til we're 70”

From Ed Sheeran's song Thinking Out Loud: And, darling, I will be loving you 'til we're 70 Why is it not And, darling, I will love you 'til we're 70 ? Why is progressive used here?
6
votes
3answers
466 views

“Our house gets really cold when the wind is blowing/blows from the east”

I know about the grammar rule that says, when A happens while B is happening (as a longer background situation), you use the simple tense for A and the progressive tense for B. According to this rule,...
6
votes
2answers
48k views

have lived vs have been living [duplicate]

Is it correct to say: 1) I've lived in London for five years. Or 2) I've been living in London for five years. I think second one is correct because we use present perfect continuous for ...
6
votes
2answers
8k views

(How many years) have you been married?/studying English?

Grammar books set rules for ELL when they want to ask questions to use present perfect form for counting, and present perfect progressive for periods of time. Now what if you want to ask about a ...
6
votes
1answer
1k views

They were angry because they had waited (had been waiting) for too long

Inspired by a past-perfect vs. present-perfect online test: They were angry because they had waited for too long. and They were angry because they had been waiting for too long. Are both ...
5
votes
3answers
2k views

What's the difference: We had hoped 'to live/to be living' in our new house by now…

We had hoped to live/to be living in our new house by now, but the builders are still working on it. UPDATED: I mean what is semantically the difference between to live and to be living there? Why ...
5
votes
4answers
384 views

were having to make everything up

When he talks of "enemies of the people", the analogies with Stalinist Russia and other 20th-century regimes are so glaring that you have to keep reminding yourself that the French Revolutionaries ...
5
votes
2answers
3k views

How can I use “do you be”?

Example with a context (audio): Yeah, when you don't know somebody very well and they just unload all this information on you, you don't really know how to deal with that situation. Do you be ...
5
votes
1answer
1k views

“Girls wearing glasses” vs. “Girls who wear glasses”

I'm having slight difficulties with a particular kind of sentences. I'd like you to check on my interpretation of differences occuring in the following sentences: A1. They're just a bunch of guys ...
5
votes
1answer
43k views

Can I use “are being ” + past participle?

Sentences with form "are being " + past tense are they correct form of grammar. And what tense do they represent. like: You are being missed. Thanks
5
votes
1answer
878 views

“Have you ever seen anyone walk (walking) the streets like that?”

Have you ever seen anyone walk the streets like that? Have you ever seen anyone walking the streets like that? Are both the above sentences grammatically correct? Do they mean the same? I saw him ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

Ben {planned / was planning} to go, but now . . . simple past or past progressive?

There was a question in my text book like this: Ben ____ to go to his high school class reunion tomorrow, but now he is not sure if he can. (A) plans (B) will plan (C) has planned (D) was ...
4
votes
3answers
21k views

This is the first time + continuous

I know that the standard construction with "this is the first time" is the Present Perfect. 1) This is the first time I have driven a car. But what if the action is still in progress and I am ...
4
votes
2answers
778 views

present progressive impossible with “when”

Could you explain me why "is cooking" is a wrong answer Who is cooking food in your family when your Mom is away? (Incorrect) Who cooks food in your family when your Mom is away? (Correct) If ...
4
votes
1answer
74 views

“Everyone at school was looking at what I wore” - why not “Everyone at school looked at what I was wearing”?

When I was a teenager, I used to think that everyone at school was looking at me and judging what I looked like, what I wore, and how I acted. Why "everyone at school was looking at me and judging" ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

How to ask how long will something continue in future?

What is the appropriate way of asking question about how long an event will continue in future? I want to ask, eg: How many more days will the product be in stock? (incorrect?) How long will the ...
4
votes
2answers
4k views

“What I've been developing so far” or “What I've developed so far”?

a) Give me 5 minutes so I can show you what I've been developing so far. b) Give me 5 minutes so I can show you what I've developed so far. I am bit confused which one should i use present perfect ...
4
votes
1answer
3k views

sat or were sitting

Please have a look at this I stood in front of the living room, watching the movie unfold on the tv screen while my mom and sister - whose idea it was to watch the film in the first place - sat ...
4
votes
2answers
523 views

Simple Past Tense or Past Progressive Tense?

So, I'm trying to figure out what the correct verb tense for the following would be: It's happening again. However, this time it feels completely different from when it happened earlier... OR: ...
4
votes
1answer
158 views

progressive tense in that sentence

SOURCE Case in point: Javier Escovedo. Javier Escovedo, who most people know as one of the founding members of The Zeros, The True Believers and one of the pioneers of the ‘70’s West Coast punk ...
4
votes
2answers
18k views

“what do you say” vs. “what are you saying”

After the athlete finished the race, a reporter comes up and asks a question. Which one is better? What are you saying to your performance? What do you say to your performance?
4
votes
2answers
124 views

“Can't be sleepin'”

From the beginning of Calvin Harris' song Blame: Can't be sleepin' Keep on waking Without the woman next to me Guilt is burning Inside I'm hurting This ain't a feeling I can keep Does ...
3
votes
2answers
20k views

“I have been 'verb-ing'” vs. “I had been 'verb-ing'”

A. I have been studying English for one year. B. I had been studying English for one year. Could one who hears those sentences argue that "A" case implies "and I am still studying it&...
3
votes
1answer
2k views

“is being on something”

The second sentence causes me problems. I have seen it somewhere. For me it looks like the verb to be is used twice (is / being). Is it grammatically correct? If yes, what does the second usage give ...
3
votes
1answer
148 views

Complicated sentences in past perfect regarding hypothetical situations with reflection on the past?

Would have had to have been doing, e.g.: For him to have become a threat in the teachers eyes, he would have had to have been exhibiting severely bad behavior all the time. Would have had to be ...
3
votes
2answers
21k views

“I'm sorry, I haven't written (or ”haven't been writing“) to you for a while” - which is better?

My question is simple. Which one sounds more natural to you? 1) I'm sorry, I haven't written to you for a while. 2) I'm sorry, I haven't been writing to you for a while. I think 2 is better. Do ...
3
votes
2answers
3k views

“while they wait” - why not “while they are waiting”?

Here is a sentence that is on my textbook. Customers can now sit down comfortably while they 'wait' for their number to be called out. In my opinion, conjunction 'while' is compatible with ...
3
votes
1answer
75 views

Why the present progressive tense is used in “you are coming from”

In a brand's advertising commentary, there is “You don’t have to say a word to let them know where you are coming from”. I am wondering why the present progressive tense is used in "you are coming ...
3
votes
1answer
210 views

Can progressive aspects express the ongoing effect of an activity?

"The Sorting Ceremony will take place in a few minutes in front of the rest of the school. I suggest you all smarten yourselves up as much as you can while you are waiting." Her eyes ...
3
votes
1answer
654 views

has ailed vs. has been ailing

First off, take a look at these two examples please: Example #1: This problem has ailed me for a long time. Example #2: This problem has been ailing me for a long time. Do you think you could ...
3
votes
2answers
7k views

Is it correct to use “will have been being”?

By this time next year we will have been being on this committee for a decade. Is it correct to use future perfect progressive tense in this sentence?
3
votes
1answer
616 views

In 'having trouble -ing', does the 'ing' have progressive meaning?

But it is clear that a number of major public employers are having trouble affording the state’s current pension system. (nytimes.com) When we have verb-ing form after trouble, does it imply the ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

She visiting (?) my house, I was studying English

I felt this sentence that uses participial construction is unnatural but I don't know why. She visiting my house, I was studying English. Is that because of the verb, visit? I'm non-native ...
3
votes
1answer
920 views

Have been/ was… difference in meaning?

I've been studying all morning. I've been studying all morning long. I was studying all morning. How are the first, and the third different in meaning? What's the difference between the first, and ...
3
votes
2answers
19k views

Are “I was understanding” and “I am understanding” grammatical?

I know the phrases "I understand" (present) and "I understood" (past). But recently I saw the phrases "I was understanding" and "I am understanding" (e.g. "Okay. I was understanding it"). I think ...
2
votes
2answers
244 views

Can 'at the moment' be so long as to read a novel?

I am reading ‘Middlemarch’ at the moment. Some situations are not strictly continuous but allow for gaps, and the concept of ‘in progress at Tr’ is perfectly consistent with Tr actually coinciding ...
2
votes
3answers
7k views

“The links are not working” vs. “the links don't work”

My manager at work has sent me two links for competitors in order to check their products. Unfortunately, these links are not working. I want to send a reply to my manager to inform her of this ...
2
votes
2answers
11k views

I'm giving up vs. I give up

Are both of the following sentences grammatically correct and, if so, is there any siginificant difference between simple and progressive aspect here? I give up (on sth. / sb.) I'm giving up (...
2
votes
5answers
121 views

“has felt”/“has been feeling” - why is the first wrong here?

I know that both a) She has walked for two hours. and b) She has been walking for two hours. mean the same thing: that she started walking two hours back and is still walking. So according to the ...
2
votes
1answer
4k views

“I'll phone you tonight”: why is this not proper?

(1) I phone her tonight. (2) I’m phoning her tonight. (The Cambridge Grammar of the English Language) (1) and (2) are all possible expressions: (1) as a schedule or plan, (2) could be used in the ...
2
votes
2answers
603 views

Future Continuous with planned actions?

Does the Future Continuous create the idea of a planned action as well as the Present Continuous does? If I say "I am seeing Jim tomorrow." I think it means that I have arranged it. It's also OK to ...
2
votes
2answers
7k views

“I was ringing” vs “I rang”

Here is the sentence. Where were you yesterday? - I was at home the whole day. - How strange. I (ring) you up at two o'clock, but nobody answered. The Past Simple would be: I rang you up at two o'...