for questions about the agreement between the tenses of verbs in related clauses or sentences.

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0
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2answers
43 views

asked + lived/lives

I asked where he lives/lived. I'm confused between lives or lived. Some say only lived can be used while others say both lived and lives can be used.
0
votes
1answer
47 views

what is time reference of a verb

In indirect speech if the time reference has not changed then the tenses are not back shifted. Randolph Quirk, in A Comprehensive Grammar of The English Language states Backshift is optional when ...
-2
votes
1answer
48 views

optional backshifting criterion in non reported speech [duplicate]

In an indirect speech back shifting of tense is optional if what is said is still true. For example -- Kate said that she is not well. ( Here non change in tense because Kate is still not well at the ...
0
votes
0answers
66 views

backshifting of tenses (optional back shifting) [duplicate]

Let's first talk about simple present tense. John : "I have a fever." John said that he has a fever. Here no change in tense because John still has a fever. Now take an example of present perfect ...
-1
votes
0answers
61 views

Sequence of tenses dilemma [duplicate]

In my grammar book, in sequence of tenses chapter I read that "a past tense in a main clause will be followed by the past tense in a subordinate clause.". For example - 1) He saw that there ...
0
votes
2answers
84 views

When to use the present or the past perfect tense?

A few days back, I asked a question - why in reported speech is the present perfect tense sometimes not back shifted to the past perfect tense ? For example: He said that he has painted the door. ...
-1
votes
1answer
68 views

sentence structure and sequence of tense

In sentence structure of indirect speech like - (He said +........... , He informed +....... , He claimed + .......... ), I am aware that if the situation is still relevant then back shifting of ...
2
votes
1answer
123 views

sequence of tenses (optional and obligatory back shifting )

Consider a sentence: 1) The president learned that the earthquake has caused havoc all across the country. Here present perfect tense is used. First tell me is it correct to use 'has caused' ? ...
1
vote
3answers
109 views

present perfect vs past perfect

What's the difference between the following examples: I noticed that the clock had stopped. I noticed that the clock has stopped.
2
votes
2answers
141 views

It was unclear that she has/had painted the door

The grammar rule says that if the verb in the main clause is in the past tense then the verbs in the subordinate clauses will also be in the corresponding past tense. According to the grammar rule ...
0
votes
0answers
35 views

back shifting of tenses

Today I happen to visit Sarah's home. To my horror I see her lying on bed. I ask : "How are you ?" She replies : "I am not feeling well." After I come back home 3-4 hours later, I write a letter to ...
2
votes
1answer
243 views

I asked if he speaks/spoke English

I asked if he speaks English I asked if he spoke English Speak or spoke? Colloquially, is it correct to say speaks?
-1
votes
0answers
22 views

“is” or “was” - “Defendants asked whether Claimants' case is/was that the agreement is binding”

Should this use is or was here? Full sentence is as follows: On 17 February 2014 the Defendants submitted request for information, seeking clarification whether it is/was the case of the Claimants ...
1
vote
2answers
89 views

He found + present/past tense

Please advise me on this - Imagine, A and B are two friends. A says to B : "You go to Sam's room and see if Sam's sleeping." B : ...
1
vote
1answer
61 views

Optional tense back shifting

While changing direct to indirect speech, we generally back shift the tense. Example - "I have finished my work." (Direct speech) He said that he had finished his work. (Indirect ...
0
votes
2answers
38 views

Optional vs obligatory back shifting [duplicate]

Consider two sentences - 1) I didn't know that X is a Russian. 2) I didn't know that X was a Russian. My question is, under the condition that X is still Russian, can sentence 1) be used ? Thanks.
0
votes
0answers
17 views

Optional back shifting vs obligatory back shifting [duplicate]

Consider two sentences - 1) I didn't know that X is a tall man. 2) I didn't know that X was a tall man. My question is, under the condition that X is still a tall man, can sentence 1) be used ? ...
0
votes
2answers
69 views

should have done vs should had done (sequence of tenses) [closed]

imagine you want to use "should have done" in a subordinate clause when there's some past tense in the main clause. e.g.: "He said I should have(had?) done it." which one is correct? or should i ...
1
vote
1answer
98 views

Although + Past Simple + Present Perfect [closed]

Is the variant "Although the test was easy, I've failed" possible if it's just happened?
0
votes
0answers
61 views

“May have been” : sequence of tenses

Let us suppose we have such a sentence: John says Marry may have fallen ill. How should we change the sentence if we talk about the past? Is it correct? John said Marry might have fallen ...
0
votes
1answer
80 views

sequence of tenses (was/were vs had been/have been)

Which is better? The protocol was signed last week after all punch list items were fixed up. or The protocol was signed last week after all punch list items had been fixed up.
1
vote
1answer
100 views

Dependent clause tense inheritance [duplicate]

Is it right to tell Five years ago he already knew that two plus two equals four. or Five years ago he already knew that two plus two equaled four. ? On English classes (I ...
0
votes
1answer
260 views

Past and Present Perfect tenses in a sentence. Sequence of events

I have a question concerning Past and Present Perfect tenses/the sequence of events. "As my school project, I have written a 44-pages-long research paper in which I had analysed the risk behaviours ...
0
votes
2answers
153 views

Past perfect and using before/after

My friend and I are having a debate about the following sentence and what to slot into the gap: ______ we had finished the course, we received certificates. (Before/After) To me it sounds correct to ...
2
votes
1answer
450 views

Can one use “may” and “might” in the same sentence?

Is it possible to use may and might in the same sentence to describe a potential outcome? For example: While Sara may recognise the car, Paul might not.
1
vote
2answers
52 views

Sequnce of tenses in the sentence

Is it okay to use different tenses in this way? Try to find an area where science isn't needed, where experiments weren't perfomed.
2
votes
1answer
112 views

Reported speech of future time clauses

How should we report sentences including "future time clause?" We will have dinner when your father gets home. Do we have to change the tense of 'future time clause' or leave it in the original ...
0
votes
1answer
62 views

Sequence of tenses question

What is the right tense of highlighted words in the sentence below? I feel that I'm writing it wrong. Perhaps you've been contacted before by a customer who screams that his site isn't working only ...
2
votes
4answers
483 views

Why “can” not “could” in “She was one of those people who can. . . .”?

The following sentence is from George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four, occurring in chapter 5 of part 2: She was one of those people who can go to sleep at any hour and in any position. Why is ...
1
vote
3answers
213 views

“I was to go to America at the end of the week. It would be the first time I had flown to America.” Is the second sentence correct?

I am using exactly the same sentence as the one used in a question already posted by someone else to ask whether one should not say and write "It will be the first time I fly to America." rather than ...
3
votes
3answers
358 views

Past Perfect - Right or Wrong?

I am in an English course, in Cambridge School, in Lisbon, Portugal, and I am learning Past Perfect. I am also in a Pastry course, and today we had our first English lesson. The teacher wrote some ...
3
votes
2answers
279 views

Sequence of tenses missing - not in Reported Speech

SITUATION: A year ago, my friend had some financial problems of which his relatives were aware. Why do we say: They believed he was in debt. but: He was believed to be in debt instead of: He was ...
1
vote
1answer
313 views

In “Who would have thought he could do it!”, is “could” “was able” or “would be able”?

In the sentence "Who would have thought he could do it!" does "could do" mean "was able to do" or "would be able to do"?
1
vote
3answers
523 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 ...
0
votes
2answers
302 views

Having or has? What is the best way to say that sentence

I have one question, what is the best way to say that sentence below? Are both grammatically correct? He has been working on mobile development for 4 years and has published more than 15 apps. ...
3
votes
2answers
180 views

Should “If I ever had a philosophy” be in the past perfect?

Excerpted from The Hills of Triumph: If I ever had a philosophy with which to govern my social life, even long after learning that social is often at the detriment of personal, it would have been ...
2
votes
2answers
262 views

Sequence of Tense [duplicate]

Which one is correct? Centuries ago, people weren't aware that the planets revolved around the sun. Centuries ago, people weren't aware that the planets revolve around the sun. In my ...
1
vote
1answer
161 views

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 ...
1
vote
3answers
221 views

Simple past sounds better but past perfect seems more accurate

I think it's grammatically more accurate to say,"The market was closed after a virus had been found." However, it sounds "better" to say,"The market was closed after a virus was found." Grammatically, ...
1
vote
2answers
431 views

Sequence of tenses?

Can you please help me with this thing called "sequence of verbs"? From what I'm understanding, if I use "would," I have to keep "would" throughout the sentence. Example: "I would go visit my cousin ...
1
vote
1answer
145 views

Isn't this against tense agreement?

When I got home yesterday, John called and said he will arrive next week. (Wikipedia) Wikipedia says the sentence above is possible. Does it not break the tense agreement when there’s no ...
-2
votes
2answers
192 views

Can I use the 3rd conditional that way? [closed]

Is the sentence given below grammatically correct? Had you born two days later and it would have been difficult to celebrate your birthdays. Is it the only option to use the third conditional to ...
7
votes
3answers
1k views

I suggested we go together / I suggested we went together. Which is the correct usage?

I am having trouble with something very specific and I found both in usage but one has to be better than the other. Right? He wanted to go back to Kazakhstan, so I suggested we go together. He ...
1
vote
1answer
1k views

What is the correct way to construct a conditional sentence with “would”?

I was told several times that a conditional sentence with the following structure is incorrect: If I would do this, then he would do that. Rather it should be: If I do this, then he will do ...