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

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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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3answers
6k views

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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1answer
264 views

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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1answer
695 views

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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3answers
358 views

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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1answer
8k views

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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Present Perfect Progressive in scientific writing?

Scientific writing is generally supposed to be written in present tense (focus on proof of the existence of the result, not how the author arrived at it). However, I have a case where this results in ...
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1answer
32 views

present perfect vs past perfect usage [duplicate]

In indirect speech present perfect tense is back shifted to past perfect tense. For example - John said, "I have written a letter." (Direct speech) John said that he had written a letter. (Indirect ...
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1answer
25 views

Past perfect reference

I'm wondering about the use of tenses in the following sentence. To me this should have been past perefect. I was led by the county's envoy to the meadow where we found prisoners *already beaten ...
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1answer
70 views

Continue working vs continue to work [duplicate]

I found this explanation: http://www.english-test.net/forum/ftopic38633.html but what about present? I continue to work or I continue working? Are they the same?
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2answers
59 views

Simple Past and Present Perfect together

An original line from Stratfor's Decade Forecast: 2015-2025, published in February: The world has been restructuring itself since 2008, when Russia invaded Georgia and the subprime financial ...
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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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185 views

Should I use past perfect tense here?

I was thinking about a certain situation. Suppose that one week ago, I played basketball once, and that today I was talking with a friend. I: I played basketball once last week. My friend: ...
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1answer
6k views

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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1answer
495 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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3answers
2k views

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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2answers
3k views

Using “wish” to express regret in the present and in the past

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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4answers
675 views

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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237 views

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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2answers
202 views

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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2answers
248 views

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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3answers
120 views

Why is this “has” used?

Tennyson has looked to Shakespeare for inspiration. (Tennyson, his masters by Grant Smith) This was written way after Tennyson died, but has is used. Why? Is it grammatical? I would use looked to ...
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235 views

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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2answers
8k views

“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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What does “Compound Tense” mean? [closed]

I have problems with learning about "Compound Tenses". Please help me.
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842 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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3answers
1k 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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84 views

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
165 views

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 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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2k views

“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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2answers
189 views

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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4answers
34k views

“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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2answers
32 views

Do I need to mention 'has' ( present perfect tense) twice when connecting the sentences with and?

Is this sentence correct as is, or should I remove the second has since that phrase is connected to the preceding one with and? As Mr. X has replied your email and has requested the 'PDF files' of ...
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3answers
89 views

“I haven't finished with that” vs “I wasn't finished with that” [closed]

I've just seen that example of usage "I wasn't finished with that" http://9gag.com/gag/aep02N5 And it seems incorrect to me. Why wouldn't I use "I haven't finished with that" instead? Is it correct ...
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2answers
93 views

'Belong to' or 'have belonged to' - simple present or present perfect? [closed]

Which sentence is correct? I have belonged to the tennis club for three years. OR I belong to the tennis club for three years. I would appreciate it if someone would kindly answer my ...
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1answer
197 views

present perfect + past simple in the same sentence

Can I use present perfect tense and simple past tense in the same sentence ? For example : Even though I have just/recently cleaned up the house, I spotted some bugs around the kitchen (today/this ...
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4answers
341 views

Did I show you my graduation photo or have I shown you my graduation photo?

So I was on my way home from school, and I overheard two people talking about something. The one asked the other: ''Did I show you my graduation photo?'', I asked my self whether it shouldn't be ...
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3answers
2k views

“Have been having classes” or “have had classes for three months”?

Which sentence is correct: "I have been having classes for three months." or "I have had classes for three months."
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2answers
270 views

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 ...
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1answer
197 views

Present Perfect Simple versus Present Perfect Continuous: a tricky case

The parents come back home, see the living-room is in a terrible mess. Do they ask their little ones "What have you done?" or "What have you been doing?" What is understood in each of the questions? ...
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3answers
598 views

Present Perfect or simple past?

A student has written: Still, I have already been aware of most of the information even before watching the video. It doesn't feel right and I would normally use a past simple here. I'm on my ...
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4answers
4k views

Present perfect tense sentence

For the following sentence: I haven't been there in a long time. I want to know if the above sentence conveys any connection with time up to now. How can I correct this sentence it if it is ...
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1answer
441 views

Is that a correct usage of present perfect?

What do you think about this sentence? Do you have bought the lesson book? Is that a correct usage of "Do you have bought"? Or should I say "Did you buy"?
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27 views

Present perfect VS infinitive verb

I was wondering why the first sentence below (where the verb "have scored" is present perfect form) is wrong while the second sentence (where the verb "to score" is infinitive) is correct. He ...
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2answers
93 views

The ambulance is on its way. There's been an accident?

Why hasn't the simple past been used rather than the present perfect in this sentence ''The ambulance is on its way to Beck's house. There's been an accident'' Why not: ''there was an accident'' It ...
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1answer
179 views

Unfinished time word and Present perfect [closed]

I've seen in the following page I should use the present perfect in a sentence with an unfinished time word. http://www.perfect-english-grammar.com/present-perfect-or-past-simple.html However in the ...
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2answers
76 views

Accidental usage of a complicated tense structure [closed]

Here I found myself, on the second day of new year, writing a comment, in which I unintentionally used an overly complicated tense structure, that left me clueless. Lately there have been plenty ...
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1answer
671 views

“been often” vs “often been” [closed]

Which of these is the correct form: techniques have been often used for post-processing or techniques have often been used for post-processing
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1answer
118 views

“Yesterday you didn't tell me John was with Finch last year”

"Yesterday you didn't tell me John was with Finch last year" here why aren't we using "John had been with Finch last year"? (since I spoke to you yesterday and with respect to that shouldn't it be ...