Questions related to the English Perfect Construction, which is sometimes called "the present perfect tense".

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“I've been working here since two months ago” [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Proper usage of “since” and “from” with regard to duration of time Is “since I’m” now an acceptable alternative to “since I was”? With the Present Perfect ...
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“I was wondering what time it is” or “I was wondering what the time has been”

Can you tell me which option is more natural in this English sentence? I'm sorry to trouble you but I was wondering what (A) time it is (B) the time has been The whole story is that ...
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888 views

Can the preposition “in” be used instead of “for” in the following sentence?

English grammar books say that when you express a period of time in present perfect, the prepostions such as "for" or "since" should be used. Example sentences: I have lived here for 20 years. ...
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How to use “have been” and be-verbs — what's the difference between them?

Consider these two sentences: They have been disappointing. They are disappointing. Could you tell me how can I identify when to use have been and when to use be-verbs in sentences like ...
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1answer
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“Has started” versus “will have started”

Which one of the following sentences is grammatically better? I hope she has started doing that by then. I hope she will have started doing that by then. Now, if I make it indirect, it will ...
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Verb Forms and Their Usage

What is meant by "present perfect", "past perfect", and "future perfect" verbs? How can I identify them or know which is which?
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Pres. perfect + going to + past infinitive

I have seen the following sentence: For four months now John has been going to have finished his novel by today. I hope I understand it (I assume it says that he has been trying to finish his ...
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1answer
59 views

Difference in terms of location between “been to” and “been in” at the time of speaking(now) in sentences using present perfect

I would like to ask a question about the proper use of "been to" and "been in" in sentences using present perfect. Currently I'm reading English Grammer in Use (2nd Edition Cambridge Press - ...
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“He told me that he [has/had] got temporary residence of England”

Telling a friend about another friend, Yesterday I met John. He told me that he has/had got temporary residence of England. Which one is fine here, has or had?
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“Have been born” vs. “are born” vs. “were born”

We are native to this country. We have been born here to serve it. Is the use of "have been" acceptable here? I think the simple past were is more appropriate. Also, what about: We are ...
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1answer
189 views

Should “How long were you at work?” have a simple or a compound tense?

I would like to know, if the following sentence can ever be correct in any context? How long were you at work? Or it must be: How long had you been at work? For example: How long were ...
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1answer
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Is the sequence of tenses applied properly in this example?

I found this sentence in some book: When Mom asked Gramma why she hasn't been answering the telephone, Gramma said. . . . My question is about the sequence of tenses: shouldn't the past perfect ...
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Is “have not worked here for a long time” ambiguous?

I have not worked here for a long time/for many years. Is it ambiguous? Which of the two below is the correct meaning? I have been working here, but only for a short period of time. I once ...
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125 views

Present and past perfect dilemma

This sentence is giving me trouble: For several days I (have/had) not had the chance to see her until a few hours ago. I think had is correct because the time reference is a few hours ago, ...
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1answer
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Did you ever hear(see, do, anything else) vs. Have you ever(seen, done, and so on) heard? [closed]

What's correct? If both, what is the difference between these questions? An example from The Valley of Fear by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle: MacDonald turned over the letter which Holmes had handed ...
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Which is proper usage: “What I've Learned” or “What I learned”? [closed]

I'm having argument with a colleague of mine over which statement is more correct. I figured the English language gurus of StackExchange would be able to set us straight.
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2answers
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Use of the word “have”

In a menu title/button, does "have" need to be used? Is "1" okay or should "2" be used? 1) People who contacted you in the last 24 hours 2) People who have contacted you in the last 24 hours This ...
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“Like” or “have liked”? [closed]

Is this sentence correct? From early ages people like travelling. Isn't it better to say: Since early ages people have liked travelling.
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1answer
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What does the presence of the perfect tense reveal about us? [closed]

Other languages might say 'the floor is clean' or 'the cat is hungry'. An English speaker might say this, or we might equally choose to say 'the floor has been cleaned' or 'the cat hasn't been fed'. ...
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this is/was the best meal I have ever had/had had

We are currently discussingq with my colleagues what the correct grammar would be in this context: you have just finished a meal and want to say it was/has been the best meal you ever had. What tenses ...
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When to use present perfect and when present perfect continuous?

In my English book it says ''I have done'' is used when an action is ended, but where there are consequences in the future. For example: 'There has been an accident, and as a result the street is ...
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2answers
881 views

Difference between “deny doing something” and “deny having done something”

What is the difference between "deny doing something" and "deny having done something"? The context is as follows: While being questioned on the court, the man denied [taking/having taken] the ...
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1answer
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I knew it already 20 yrs ago vs I knew it as early as 20 yrs ago

I know that "already" is mainly used with present perfect. I want to emphasise that something was known 20 years ago. Are the following the same? I knew it already 20 yrs ago I knew it as early ...
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Tense choice in “the strategy was exploited so frequently before, that it has long lost its originality”

I am not sure if the Past Simple and Present Perfect tenses in the second part of the sentence are used correctly: Surely, we can experiment with various styles, combine genres and produce ...
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Use of “had said” in the “The Archers”

In the BBC radio drama The Archers, the following conversation takes place: A:             David, you are not going to say what you saw. You love your family, right? David:   What? A:    ...
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“I ran some tests” or “I've run some tests”? [duplicate]

I'm a Software Engineer and English isn't my native language. Today I was writing an e-mail where I wanted to state that I had run some tests overnight but I started to ask myself which one of the ...
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I hope you enjoyed/have enjoyed staying in Italy [duplicate]

A friend has written me a message in which she tells me that she is leaving tomorrow from Italy. I want to say that I hope that she had/ has had a great time here in Italy. What is the right way to ...
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183 views

Why the present perfect in “It is closed since 1900”? [closed]

I am struggling to understand the present perfect tense as my language does not have it. It is closed since 1900 should it not be: It has been closed since 1990? How is it grammatical? ...
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When could we use perfect tense? [closed]

Could you recommend me any grammar taskbook like Murphy with a lot of tasks and explanation of perfect tense? I haven't quite understood the meaning of the perfect tense and all cases when it should ...
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1answer
352 views

Present perfect or past simple? [duplicate]

I know the basic rules about using PP and PS (like specified time in the past etc.) but in some cases, it is not clear to me: I have finished painting. - present perfect, I just announce that. I ...
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Present Simple instead of Present Perfect

I have come across interesting cases several times where the Present Simple is used instead of the Present Perfect. For example: 1) Lately I get the feeling that I am not so much being pulled down as ...
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Why is the perfect tense used in this sentence?

I wish I have been there for the baby kicking for the first time? Could I change the sentence to I wish I was there for the baby kicking for the first time? What are the differences ...
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We were/have been together all day?

When you have specific dates in the past, do you always have to use the simple past? On 01/31/2013 I met my friend. We were/have been together all day long.
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I need point of view of native speakers on the perfect tense

My question could seem to be very simple, but the reasons why I ask it connect with the understanding of fundamental principles of the construction of the English language. That’s why my question is ...
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Present perfect vs. passive voice

Here are two sentences that look pretty similar: The book was written by Hugo. The book has been written by Hugo. Each of them says that the action has been already performed in the past ...
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Is present perfect necessarily definitive action in past [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How do the tenses in English correspond temporally to one another? If I say "I have worked in a supermarket." does it mean that all the work is in the past and that now, ...
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Present Perfect with “that”

I came across the sentence "It's been thirty years since my parents first met." I am sure that if I heard "It's been thirty years that my parents first met", I would accept it as grammatical, but I ...
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How to understand “We have not been smoking”?

Given a sentence: We have not been smoking What is the exact meaning the speaker wants to express? One interpretation: We smoked an hour ago, but we stopped smoking after ten minutes, then ...
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612 views

perfect tense: question on “unspecified time”

What kind of time descriptor can be regarded as an "unspecified time"? (So it can be used along with the perfect tense) For example, it's correct to say: I have seen that movie six times in the ...
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670 views

Present perfect and simple past

Here's a conversation: Speaker1: I have already seen this film. Speaker2: When have you seen it? [OR] When did you see it? Speaker1: Last month. Are both of the responses from Speaker2 ...
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Present Continuous instead of Present Perfect Continuous? [closed]

Is it possible to simplify sentences like: "I've been having soy milk for 10 yrs now" "I've been standing here for an hour"* into: "I'm having soy milk for 10 yrs now" "I'm ...
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1answer
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What is the difference between following 2 sentences? [duplicate]

What is the difference between following 2 sentences? Can you please explain me the meaning of both? "I have eaten my lunch" "I ate my lunch" Thanks a lot for helping.
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What does “Compound Tense” mean? [closed]

I have problems with learning about "Compound Tenses". Please help me.
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What is the difference between “I have worked here” and “I have been working here”? [duplicate]

What is the difference between the following sentences? When can I use either? I have worked here and I have been working here
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“She has put on some weight.” vs “She put on some weight.”

Say, you ask the father... A: How is Mary? B: She is fine, but she put on some weight. Say, you ask someone who just saw Mary after a long time... C: How is Mary? D: She is fine, but she ...
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1answer
378 views

Present Perfect after “before”

I've been watching a TV show recently and in one of the episodes the following is being said: I don't want half my army killed before I've crossed the Narrow Sea. In the second part of the ...
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2answers
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Trouble with mixed tenses [closed]

How many phones have you lost in total? I've lost 2 in 2 months, at this rate I could be catching you up!" In particular I've used the past simple in the first sentence. The second sentence ...
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“Have been + verb-ing” vs. “have + past participle”

What's the difference between the following constructions of present perfect: I've been waiting for you for seven years. I've waited for you for seven years. Googling yields no satisfying ...
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“Did you do it?” vs “Have you done it?”?

If someone did something that made me mad, which is correct to say: Did you do it? have you done it? If not, what is the proper situation for saying Did you do it?
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Past perfect in Crime and Punishment

I've just started reading the English translation of Crime And Punishment, and come across the following sentences where the usage of past perfect tense has confused me: He was so badly dressed that ...