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Tense is location in time by grammatical forms and constructions rather than by semantics.

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Is it correct to use could or can?

May I know which is correct? She would travel around the world if she could or can fly like a bird.
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Should hypothetical situations always be written in the past tense?

Example sentence: I could follow her to find out what she does, but I risked coming off as a stalker. I think I heard somewhere that hypothetical situations should always be written in the past ...
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Present Continuous (personal initiative), Present Simple (a voice of authority)?

Do you agree that when we use Present Continuous and Present Simple for future plans Present Continuous conveys a personal initiative while Present Simple conveys some outward instructions? Is my ...
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23 views

Can you skip “have” the second time you use the present perfect in a sentence in sequence?

I feel a little stupid to ask that question but I am asking myself if one has to write "have" a second time when using the present perfect in a sentence, for some reason that I can´t explain: "At ...
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2answers
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The shop has opened today vs the shop opened today

What is the difference between those: The shop has opened today The shop opened today The shop has been opened today The shop was opened today
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What is the tense called: “I have got a book”

What's the name of the tense of the above-mentioned example:present simple or present perfect, or perhaps something else in modern grammar? Or simply "present"? Thanks in advance. I have got a ...
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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 ...
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Never in the present perfect and the past perfect

After another grammar repetition, I started thinking about adverb 'never' in the present participle and past participle. The rules say that using 'never' in the tenses is possible, but what is the ...
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It already exists OR it is already existing before

Let's say a group of students is speaking in front of a classroom. In the middle of their talk about a brain research, they just said ''we call this 'paralysis analysis''. After that, their teacher ...
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What is the difference between “I still use” vs “I am still using” in this sentence?

What's the difference between : It's 2018 already and I still use an iPhone 5S. vs It's 2018 already and I am still using an iPhone 5S. Does the use of the word 'using' mean I am thinking of ...
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1answer
86 views

What is to be done vs What has to be done?

What exactly is the difference between the following two sentences? What is to be done? or What has to be done?
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1answer
41 views

Why is “uses” in “Peter is uses a dictionary” wrong?

Peter is uses a dictionary. Peter is using a dictionary. Could someone help explain why "uses" is wrong? I know that "using" is the right one and "uses" is wrong but I couldn't find the reason ...
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23 views

“would have been possible without ” VS “is possible without”

Jane is keen to point out that none of this would have been possible without the dedication of the entire team. Jane is keen to point out that none of this is possible without the dedication of ...
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1answer
21 views

Haven’t, hasn’t, hadn't

Do I say His classmates hasn’t been interviewed?” Or haven’t or hadn’t? It is pretty confusing to me, especially the past perfect, present participle
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present simple or present continuous when describing a picture?

describing how someone is dressed in a picture, should one use the present simple or the present continuous: "Charlie wears or is wearing blue pyjamas"? Thanks.
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which one sounds most correct?

In a village at the edge of the rainforest, the skilled and nimble fingers of an old woman bend fabric and straw into graceful baskets. The baskets are the perfect size to hold papayas, but they also ...
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1answer
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Is the usage of “ruling” in this case idiomatic?

Here is a sentence I wrote: In 1937, the Judicial Committee of the Privy Council struck down Bennett’s New Deal legislation, ruling the reforms unconstitutional and outside of federal jurisdiction (...
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continues or will continue

The forestry industry (has met and continues)/(has met and will continue) to meet the growing changes required to stay competitive within a rapidly transforming economy. Should it be "continues" or "...
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Help to understand this sentence from the book Harry Potter

Only the photographs on the mantelpiece really showed how much time had passed. Ten years ago, there had been lots of pictures of what looked like a large pink beach ball wearing different-colored ...
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1answer
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which sentence is true gramatically?

Which sentence is true grammatically? Would you please explain me? Sara has a ring in her left hand. she must have gotten married. Sara has a ring in her left hand. she must get married.
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31 views

“worse than it was” or “worse than what it was”

Don't blame me. I didn't make it worse than it was. This sentence sounds fine to me, as it looks analogous to another utterance I know to be idiomatic "It's worse than it looks". But I wonder if ...
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2answers
29 views

past perfect VS past tense

Here's the context. Even though it was late May, it was still a bit chilly outside. We lived less than a mile from the Atlantic Ocean, so the coastal breeze was often cool and salty. But lately, ...
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0answers
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Conditional sentence/if-clause - “If it makes/If it will make/If it would make”

If it will make you feel better, I think you should do it. If it would make you feel better, I think you should do it. If it makes you feel better, I think you should do it. Which of these would be ...
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1answer
28 views

Had happened to or happened to have?

He happened to glance over the passage before class, the only portion of last night’s assigned reading that he’d actually looked at. Should this sentence be "He had happened to glance over" or "He ...
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1answer
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Experiences I have had vs experiences I have had before (tenses)

When someone asks you this: Question: Do you like love songs? Answer#1: Yes I do, because sometimes I relate to the song's lyrics, especially the experiences that I have had before. To ...
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1answer
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Should it be steal or stole?

I saw a sentence in an article: Janey saw her friend steal a bangle at the shop. Why not stole, as it use saw? Why her friend is singular but steal with no 's'?
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The simple past tense in the main clause and the present perfect in the subordinate?

This is an excerpt from a news article. What confuses me is the tense used in the first sentence. The simple past was used in the main clause while the present perfect in the subordinate, which, from ...
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Why is “bought” used instead of “buy” in “bought it ALREADY…” when we use “will” in “You will do this, AFTER you do that”?

I just met a sentence, that is If someone bought it already, then that item will not show up. It obviously refers to future, but why bought is used instead of buy? I consider this same as AFTER, ...
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Would and will in one sentence

I write a blog. In one article I am creating a tutorial. I am using a sentence with words will and would. I am not sure if the tenses are used well. The sentence is this Then we will add some error ...
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1answer
50 views

Present Simple vs Present Continious

[TLDR] Why is the "I am seeing a lady" phrase mean that the guy who's saying this means that he's dating her, that it is not only at the moment of saying it, that it happens every day and why do I ...
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1answer
40 views

How can I tell what the past participle of a word is?

How can I tell what the past participle of something is- especially if the past participle is usually different? Ex: Drink = have drunk, choose = had chosen, and bring = have brought. If these are all ...
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1answer
45 views

I actually feel absolutely nothing ? or felt absolutely?

12: Depression is so much misunderstood and still so powerful. If you asked me what I was feeling, I would tell you I actually feel absolutely nothing, I try so hard to feel something but nothing ...
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1answer
48 views

Difference between the questions starting with Did/Had/Have

What's the difference between below questions? Are they the same? Did you see the movie? Have you seen the movie? Had you seen the movie? I have used question 1 and 2 in situations when ...
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1answer
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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?
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Confused about tenses

Having received a Western-style school education and worked very hard to improve his writing skills, he later became a famous professional writer. The second worked follows the past tense aspect. But ...
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1answer
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“you are pushing me away” vs. “you push me away”

Again I am wondering which version is more suitable: "Do you love me?" "I don`t know." Should the response be: "You do know that whenever you say that you don't know whether you love me ...
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I was in … for x years

"I have been in America for 10 years" indicates that the speaker is still currently in America. But what if you are not in America anymore and you want to express that you have spent 10 years living ...
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1answer
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“sequence of tenses”

I am wondering whether it is better to say: You would think that I was a thief. or You would think that I am a thief. and I wouldn't say one was more correct than the other or I ...
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1answer
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Is the simple tense better than the continuous tense in “When I lied to him, I crossed a line.”?

I am wondering about the tenses in this sentence. When I lied to him, I crossed a line. I think "lied" and "crossed a line" are correct since the lying results in me crossing the line. Does the ...
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1answer
39 views

she was happy to see her mother

a. She was happy to see her mother. Does this mean a1. She was happy when she saw her mother. a2. She was happy that she'd seen her mother. a3. She was happy that she was going to see her mother. ...
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“Would have to” usage

From the article "Delhi launches doorstep delivery of govt. services" in The Hindu (emphasis mine): The applicant would have to call 1076 and fix an appointment with a mobile sahayak, who will go ...
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1answer
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Tense when recounting and analysing a literary text [duplicate]

Should I write the substance of a poem In past tense or in present tense? Here are a few lines of the poem owl: Downhill I came, hungry, and yet not starved; Cold, yet had heat within me that was ...
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2answers
130 views

past tense VS past

I want to mean that while I was in Brazil, I got used to coffee. And here, what's the difference in nuance between past tense and past perfect tense? I got used to coffee when I was in Brazil. I had ...
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1answer
34 views

Present or past tense

Is this sentence correct? If this present or past perfect tense? I cannot figure it out. I have had been doing this for eight hours.
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1answer
38 views

Using “In the last year”

Which one is grammatically correct? "In the last year, I had the opportunity to.." or " In the last year, I have had the opportunity to.." That's because I've read you can't use past simple ...
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1answer
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Why did the host say “…I WILL do some exercise…” instead of “…I do some exercise…”?

This passage is from 6 minute English by the BBC: But because I know that is not good for my health, I do also like to go to the gym a couple of times a week and I will do some exercise like a bike ...
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1answer
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difference between “Has won” and “won”

Should I use "Has won" or "won" in the following context? Here's the text: John: Subha, did you know our school team has won/won today's soccer match? Me: No! I didn't know that. With the ...
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1answer
21 views

“Seeing” in weather forecasts

I know that the verb to see can be used in the Present Continuous tense if it means: to visit/to meet someone: I'm seeing my dentist tomorrow (I've got an appointment). to watch (a movie/concert/...
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1answer
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“Working” or “will be working”?

In the context: Ms. Johnson will be tired tonight due to the fact that she is busy with her work all day long. Is there any other way to say it correctly? For example: A) Ms. Johnson will be tired ...
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1answer
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HAVE you talked this through+before you MADE this…(tense confusion)

Let's say your bestfriend and his girlfriend has finally decided to marry each other. Knowing that, you now ask them if they talked the marriage through, and you say: Have you guys talked this ...