1
vote
1answer
95 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 ...
0
votes
1answer
431 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!
1
vote
2answers
62 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"
0
votes
1answer
32 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 ...
0
votes
1answer
1k 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: ...
1
vote
1answer
78 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 ...
1
vote
1answer
2k 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 ...
2
votes
1answer
116 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 ...
2
votes
2answers
409 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 ...
0
votes
1answer
152 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? ...
2
votes
1answer
3k views

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 ...
1
vote
1answer
280 views

Present tense vs. future tense following a conditional

If you ask without any background, many people are likely to assume you are just too lazy to do the work yourself. If you ask without any background, many people will likely assume you are ...
1
vote
1answer
534 views

Is it grammatically correct to change tense in a sentence? [duplicate]

When writing a sentence, can I change from past-tense to present-tense in the middle of it? For example, Joey realized that the ball is green. or Joey realized that the ball was green. I ...
1
vote
1answer
254 views

Why does the tense of a story sometimes suddenly change from past to present, and back again? [closed]

For example in A Room With A View, by E. M. Forster, the tenses suddenly change from past to present or vice versa: Chapter XV: The Disaster Within The Sunday after Miss Bartlett's arrival ...
3
votes
1answer
337 views

Present simple or present continuous?

Here is an exercise from Intermediate Language Practice by Michael Vince: Complete the following sentence with a present simple or present continuous form of the words in bold. Pat has ...
1
vote
2answers
204 views

Can verb tense be changed mid-sentence for something that still exists?

Look at this sentence: I knew that the sky is blue. To me, it doesn't make sense to say the sky was blue since it still is blue. Even so, is it grammatically incorrect to say I knew that the sky ...
0
votes
1answer
551 views

Can we use past perfect progressive in the context where present tense is predominantly used?

As I understand, past perfect is used to express an action that had happened before something else in the past. But in the paragraph I came across, there appeared past perfect progressive in the ...
0
votes
3answers
163 views

'I knew you are John's brother' vs 'I knew you were John's brother'

Suppose you are John's brother, and I talked with you several days ago. I knew that when I talked with you. Now I'm meeting with you again and want to tell you I knew then that you are John's ...
0
votes
2answers
194 views

“I stay in Canada” vs. “I will stay in Canada” [duplicate]

Situation: I am in Canada and will go back to Hong Kong next week. So, I want to tell my friends that "I will stay in Canada until the 6th of March". Question: I do not know if the word will should ...
1
vote
4answers
5k views

“I came from Italy” or “I come from Italy”

If I originally lived in Italy and then moved to the United States and currently live in the United States. Then somebody asked me where I am from. I say: I come/came from Italy. Should it ...
2
votes
2answers
108 views

“The more time a person invests” vs. 'the more time a person will invest'

Consider the following two sentences: Because the more time a person invests into specific interests, the better their results. Because the more time a person will invest into their specific ...
4
votes
2answers
202 views

“Decided to do X the next time she went for a walk” vs. “…the next time she goes for a walk”

I came across this sentence in the book Grammar Essentials for Dummies which confused me. The lion with a thorn in her paw decided to wear sneakers the next time she went for a walk in the jungle. ...
2
votes
1answer
2k views

Questions in indirect speech and verb tense change

Today I had another English lesson and all students were instructed by teacher to ask each other few predefined questions and then to report them. I got the following questions: "What kind of ...
0
votes
1answer
244 views

Present simple vs. present perfect

I'm doing a key word transformation and I've come to this sentence: There aren't any eggs left. "We ____ eggs". I should complete the sentence with 2–5 words using the word "run". At first I ...
-1
votes
2answers
353 views

Present Simple or Present Continious [closed]

I have to write an email to inform other people about some error that occurred. I want to write: It is returning "value1" instead of "value2" when I select something which is causing the error. ...
6
votes
3answers
877 views

Present simple on temporary action

Mary is sleeping in the living room while we redecorate her room. Why is the present simple "redecorate" used? Present simple is used when there's something permanent, but they don't want to ...
5
votes
1answer
760 views

Is every sentence in a tense?

I know that "tense" indicates time. If that is true, then not every sentence can be indicated of its tense. Please review these sentences: "If I could go to the market , I must have taken breakfast ...
6
votes
3answers
3k views

What tense is “If I were a bird, I could fly”

The sentence is not referring to any time past, present of future. It's just referring to an imaginary condition which has never existed and seemingly will never exist. Still, the sentence and other ...
2
votes
3answers
78 views

“U.S. stocks were modestly higher at the opening bell Wednesday” vs. “… are higher …”

Here's a news heading from CNN: U.S. stocks were modestly higher at the opening bell Wednesday as political wrangling over the fiscal cliff continues to dominate the market. The author used ...
1
vote
3answers
969 views

Correct use of tense

Can you please confirm which of the following three is correct? I shared some ideas with Jon, which he agrees is a good solution for the problem we are facing. I shared some ideas with Jon, ...
5
votes
1answer
369 views

Tense used with statistics

I would like to place a statistics in front of the sentence, followed by the agency that has reported it. The findings and reports were done many years ago. Which of the two is correct and why? ...
0
votes
3answers
880 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 ...
1
vote
1answer
1k views

Confused by the past tense and the present tense

Suppose I'm talking about some design scheme. I say something like "foo was once designed and implemented in a way called bar that ...". Then I want to introduce the original scheme "bar", for ...
5
votes
2answers
983 views

“The author wrote” vs. “the author writes”

What is the rule for the following examples? In the passage, the author writes. . . . In the passage, the author wrote. . . . I’m trying to explain to my son that both are correct, but I can’t ...
-2
votes
2answers
177 views

Using verb continuous for living abroad for a period of time [closed]

Suppose that a friend of mine is Thai and he usually lives in Thailand. Now he is in Australia and he is going to live in Australia for only a few years. Should I say “A friend of mine is living in ...
8
votes
3answers
49k views

Simple Past vs. Present Perfect: “was” vs. “has been” [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: “Did it close” vs “Has it closed”? Which is correct: “has died” or “died”? How do the tenses in English correspond temporally to one another? ...
2
votes
3answers
7k views

“I've just arrived” vs. “I just arrived” [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Is “I just spent all my money” grammatically incorrect? “I just ate them” and “I've just eaten them” — what's the difference in American and British English? ...
2
votes
3answers
1k views

What tense to use here (sending an email)

What should be the correct tense: Dear XY, As agreed, I am sending / I send this email so you can find...
0
votes
3answers
503 views

Since he left, nobody cares/has cared?

I would like to say that since one of my colleagues left, nobody cares about our project anymore. Or nobody has cared? EDIT: I want to say that nobody cares now and it started when X left.
1
vote
1answer
829 views

What tense should be used here?

Is use of present simple correct in these examples? My daughter goes to school tomorrow [for the first time]. I go to school to talk to my daughter's teacher tomorrow [and this happens ...
0
votes
1answer
82 views

“They develop skills at this age” vs. “they are developing skills at this age”

Which one is correct? If both are correct, are there any differences in meaning? For children, the age of 3 is very critical time, because they develop their language skills rapidly at this ...
1
vote
3answers
3k views

“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.
3
votes
2answers
1k views

“They knew what mercy is” vs. “they knew what mercy was”

They knew what mercy is. They knew what mercy was. Mercy is something that always exists so can I say is as in the above example?
4
votes
4answers
707 views

Tense change: previous actions on something that's currently true

I'm describing a situation that happened in the past. To explain it, I want to use a description that is both true now and true when the situation happened. Specifically, I want something like: ...
9
votes
5answers
9k views

Why is the past tense used in “I was wondering if you would like to come for dinner?”

Why isn't the present tense used? I am wondering if you would like to come for dinner.