English Language & Usage Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for linguists, etymologists, and serious English language enthusiasts. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

What should be the correct tense:

Dear XY,
As agreed, I am sending / I send this email so you can find...
share|improve this question
up vote 1 down vote accepted

I am sending is the right one to use here, unless you are trying for a dramatic or poetic feel. Both are grammatically correct.

share|improve this answer

Which tense to use in writing letters is a very old problem. If you're speaking in person, now is now, no problem.

But writing is permanent, and this separates the now of the author, while writing, from the later now of the reader, while reading.

Either of these could be thought of as Present, and referred to in the Present tense, and it's a matter of convention which one gets used. English uses the Present of the Author, and that's why JeffSahol's answer is the correct one.

Classical Latin, on the other hand, used the Present of the Reader, which means the author uses Past to refer to writing time. This makes Latin correspondence sound strange when translated literally into English.

share|improve this answer

The correct tense would be "I am sending" as it is an action in progress.

However... does the person you are sending the email to really need to be told that you are sending him an email?

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.