The present tense is a grammatical tense that locates a situation or event in present time.

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Time given us or time given to us

I read this quote online: "All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us" - J. R. R. Tolkien Is it just a relaxation of pronunciation of "the time that [god] has given us" ? ...
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43 views

“Every day” and present continuous vs simple present [duplicate]

Every day I'm eating vegetables. I eat vegetables every day. Can someone explain if there's a nuance in meaning of the two? If there's a better situation to use one than the other? (doesn't have to ...
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63 views

Present perfect or past perfect? [duplicate]

Since I have stopped working, I started to learn English at home. Since I had stopped working,I started learning English at home. Are both questions having the same meaning in this context?
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finish, is finished, have finished

Could you help me about this question? I am confused about how to use "finish" with "when". For example: When your class is finished, could you wait for me at the bank? When your class ...
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4answers
81 views

“If you get lonely, I hope you phone me” vs. “will phone me”

Which one is correct? If you get lonely, I hope you phone me any time. If you get lonely, I hope you will phone me any time. A detailed explanation would be fantastic.
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228 views

Before I go to sleep vs before I'm going to sleep [closed]

Are both sentences grammatically correct? Is there any difference in meaning between these two? I'm going to finish my report before I go to sleep. vs I'm going to finish my report before I'm ...
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73 views

Something was or is nice

When we say " X was nice", does it imply X was nice in the past, but not nice any more at the present? Here is one context: One day I went shopping with a friend, and we saw a nice item in a shop. ...
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244 views

Present continous and present simple

Why do we say, "Who is that man? What does he want", but, "Who is that man? Why is he looking at us". If the second is okay, which I am sure it is, why can't we say, "Who is that man? What is he ...
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62 views

Exceptions that allow the use of “will” after “if” [duplicate]

This as what I've been able to establish: The use of "will" after "if" is legal only when any of the following conditions apply: The "will" is used as a verb (equivalent to "want"), for example, ...
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112 views

“She always sees…” or “She is always seeing…”

She always sees things that don't exist. She is always seeing things that don't exist. In the first sentence we use verb "to see" in the present simple tense. In the second sentence, verb ...
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242 views

The use of the Present Simple within a short period of time

Help me understand how idiomatic this usage of the Present Simple is. Usually, PS conveys repeated actions within relatively long (or almost unlimited) time frames. For instance, “The sun rises in the ...
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128 views

What tense to use when reporting something which has never been true or never happened? [duplicate]

The report said that years ago city planners had planned to build a facility that turns salt water into fresh water, but financial woes made that impossible. In this sentence should turned be ...
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98 views

using present progressive with present simple in subordinate clause

There are two corrects answers in this sentence according to the answer keys, but I don't know why and when (like in a certain situation) which one should be used. Before the train departs, all the ...
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1answer
148 views

“The key doesn't work” vs. “The key is not working” [closed]

Here's a situation. You go to your hotel room and the key that you have is not working. When you go back to the reception, should you say: The key is not working, can you fix it. Or The key ...
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1k views

“How long have you stayed there?” vs “How long did you stay there?” [duplicate]

I have a doubt about the difference between those two questions. Could you guys give me an appropriate examples and explanation? Thanks in advance!
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92 views

I quote/ I am quoting

This is the last paragraph of a book review: "To conclude, I quote the concluding paragraph from the..." Is this correct English? Why is it "I quote"? Can "I am quoting" be used insteand?
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2answers
65 views

“Is idle” or “Is idling”

I'm working on an app which displays status messages, like: "XY is now available" "XY is now offline" I'm wondering which of the followings is correct: "XY is now idle" "XY is now idling"
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48 views

“The predecessor of company A is B” vs. “the predecessor of company A was B” [duplicate]

I'm working on some company profiles. I am wondering about the tense of verb in this sentence: The predecessor of company A is B. The predecessor of company A was B. Which is the ...
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4k views

Can you use past and present tense in the same sentence?

Could you please confirm if the following sentence is correct or not? ...he comes over quite often, he and I got on quite well when we see each other so not much issue there. Or should it be: ...
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145 views

Is it grammatical to say “I saw her dropping the ticket” as opposed to “I saw her drop the ticket”? [duplicate]

What is the difference between using the past tense and the present participle, since both sentences indicate the speaker witnessed the action of the ticket being dropped?
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106 views

Is this a simple present tense ? If yes then please explain

Statement is as follows: Obama makes a surprise visit to Afghanistan. As per the definition of simple present tense, this statement does not fall into any of the following categories: For ...
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3answers
228 views

Difference in meaning between “booking is amended” and “booking has been amended” [duplicate]

What is the difference in meaning between "booking is amended" and "booking has been amended"?
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5answers
3k views

“Did you like what you saw/see?”

So I heard this in a movie and I'm not sure if it's grammatically correct . . . Should it be: 1.) "Did you like what you saw?" or 2.) "Did you like what you see?" Which one is right, you ...
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“Would” vs. “would have”, “could” vs. “could have”, “should” vs. “should have” [closed]

What is a good example to understand these words at once? I am quite confused by these and feel like I am using them incorrectly. Please guide me how and when to use them properly. E.g., "I eat ...
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2answers
119 views

Present Perfect Tense - Specific phrase

I am studying present perfect, and I found the following phrase: Susan hasn't mastered Japanese, but she can communicate. What's the difference between this phrase and the next: Susan don't ...
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is hidden or has hiidden [closed]

What is appropriate to use he is hidden or he has hidden ? It is bit confusing sometimes ,where to use the perfect form and where to simple
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647 views

“I teach” vs. “I'm teaching” — which one is proper in this situation?

Following situation occurs/ed. I meet a friend for a coffee. We chat and I ask him what he's doing for work now. His answer: "I'm teaching English." This irks me. Because in that situation he's not ...
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92 views

“Obama is in town this weekend” or “Obama will be in town this weekend” [duplicate]

A friend of mine used the following phrase to tell me about Obama's visit to Malaysia this weekend (he told me this when it was not already the weekend): Obama is in town this weekend. This ...
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1answer
4k views

I was wondering or I am wondering? [duplicate]

In a job interview, I want to ask the interviewer about work hours. We are talking in the present. In this case which sentence is correct, and why? I was wondering, what are the work hours? I ...
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183 views

Past-tense verb + that clause: clause has to use past tense?

I am writing a subordinate clause in the "Related Work" section of my academic paper. Which is correct? In [1], Smith et al. pointed out that the solution is feasible. OR In [1], Smith et ...
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2answers
71 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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284 views

Present continuous or simple present? and is “it's decided” English?

I hesitate a lot between four alternatives. Could you help me by telling me which one is the more correct please? I've made my mind up, I leave you. I've made my mind up, I'm leaving you. ...
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stop vs stopped?

what is the difference between; "what if we stop X" and "what if we stopped X" We are trying to write an inspirational statement, not so much a question, to provoke thought around stopping X. For ...
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4answers
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Shifting tenses in a short story [duplicate]

I am writing a short story using past tense, but I am a little bit confused when it comes to writing this part: She had never seen a man as athletic as him before. She knew Japanese men (were / ...
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1answer
146 views

Present Perfect for the past?

I've come across the - more or less - following sentence in a book (American publisher): "They have done it in the past" I've always thought that "PAST" and "PRESENT PERFECT" can't go together. The ...
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2answers
588 views

Should I use present tense in reporting speech?

Should I use present tense in reported speech? I have both sentences and not sure which one is correct: (1) Peter mentioned that the formula A is based on formula B. (2) Peter mentioned that the ...
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What brings you here? What has brought you here?

Why do we ask people "What brings you here?" instead of "What has brought you here?" According to Oxford Dictionary, "bring" here means "cause someone to come to a place." The cause of the visit ...
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“Boys will be boys!” Is 'will be' a future simple of 'be' or a present simple of modal auxiliary 'will'?

In the proverb: Boys will be boys! is 'will be' one verb or two? the future simple of 'be' (one verb)? or the present simple of modal auxiliary 'will' + the bare present infinitive of 'be' ...
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160 views

Does “had have been” exist?

Does "had have been" exist and what tense is it? I had have seen her
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182 views

Which tense should use? Present Perfect or Past?

Which of the following sentence is correct? "I have talked with him today. He wants to do the work" or "I talked with him today. He wants to do the work." Which tense I need to use at the sentence? ...
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how to use “has been” [duplicate]

I had been preparing for a tennis event since March, but it has been postponed until next year. Question: Can "it has been postponed" be replaced with "was postponed" grammatically without changing ...
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One of the underlined words is wrong. Choose either A, B, C or D [duplicate]

"What (are:A) you talking (about:B)? (I'm:C) not (understand:D) you." At first, I thought C, so the sentence would be "What are you talking about? I don't understand you." And I chose C because I ...
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3answers
214 views

told vs have told in a sentence [closed]

How do you say the next sentence? 1) I told him to stay on the path while he was hiking, but he wandered off into the forest and was bitten by a snake 2) I told him to stay on the path while he was ...
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2answers
246 views

“Is left untouched” or “was left untouched” [closed]

Which is correct? My book was left untouched for so many years. or My book is left untouched for so many years. Well, until now, that book is really untouched. So does that mean that just ...
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6answers
3k views

“I don't understand you” vs. “I'm not understanding you” [closed]

Which sentence is correct? What are you talking about? I don't understand you. What are you talking about? I'm not understanding you. That was a question we've had in an exam and it was: ...
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6answers
3k views

Past present future all in one word?

Does the English language have a mechanism for expressing past, present and future tense simultaneously? In other words, consider the following three sentences: 1) The force was with me. 2) The ...
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103 views

PrP Continuous vs. PrP | Nuance?

I have a question regarding the usage of the Present Perfect and the Present Perfect Continuous. So first, here's the context: I was playing an online game with a couple friends and in this game you ...
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1answer
160 views

Using “must have” in the past [duplicate]

I know the must have/must had thing has been asked before but I have yet to see it in the context of this question. Does "have" make grammatical sense in the following? It sounds like it conflicts ...
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390 views

Until you have confirmed + past or present?

Which one of these sentences is correct? The contract will not be signed until you have checked the manuscript and confirmed that everything is ok. The contract will not be signed until you ...
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209 views

Are the verb suffixes -eth and -est always present tense?

Are the verb suffixes -eth and -est always present tense? Wondering if these suffixes imply present action.