Questions about the Simple Past tense.

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1answer
28 views

Use of Past Simple vs Past perfect in sentences with since

Ann admitted that she hadn't seen her parents since she left London. Is the above sentence OK or do I have to write Ann admitted that she hadn't seen her parents since she had left London. ...
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5answers
171 views

“Sally broke her leg” or “Sally has broken her leg”? How does switching the past simple with the present perfect affect meaning?

Earlier today I had a private lesson with an Italian student—intermediate level, who has been studying the present perfect vs. past simple tense. His teacher had given him an exercise where a list of ...
4
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2answers
157 views

“I went to the hotel you were staying at” vs. “you stayed at”

Is there a difference in meaning between these two sentences? I went to the hotel you were staying at when you were in New York. I went to the hotel you stayed  at when you were in New York. ...
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0answers
74 views

“If that was/were the case” [closed]

The subject: "We have never voted on ethics and morals." Which is correct? If that was the case If that were the case
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1answer
60 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 ...
2
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1answer
46 views

Past Perfect vs. Simple Past Usage

I've been brushing up on the past perfect tense recently, and after reading the following sentence on a website, I feel like it's missing a key element: "Many progressives, who thought well of ...
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0answers
93 views

Do I so often encounter simple past for past participle (e.g., “I have went,” “what was did to her”) because of where I am or when?

Since moving to small-town northern Minnesota (USA) two dozen years back to teach English, I have noticed a lot of instances in spoken language where the simple past is used in lieu of the past ...
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1answer
41 views

Past Perfect or Simple past?

* "I don't like this," I said. She hadn't heard me. * Can the "hadn't heard" be replaced with "didn't hear"?
0
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1answer
29 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 ...
2
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6answers
272 views

“Didn't want to do X until Y happened” vs. “hadn't wanted to do X until Y happened”

Which answer is correct? Tony _______to have children until his little daughter was born. After she won his heart, he decided he wanted a big family. A. didn't want. B. hadn't wanted. ...
1
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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 ...
0
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1answer
88 views

Simple past or present perfect when describing a series of recent actions

I, as an American, would opt for the simple past rather than the present perfect in the following sentence: Today she has gone to a class, and after that she has been shopping. Is this sentence ...
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1answer
92 views

Incorrect gerund to simple past conversion?

I'm a non-native speaker of English, so this might or might not be something very basic. Nonetheless, it's baffling me and I'd love some help. A friend of mine wrote this sentence in a story for ...
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4answers
164 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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2answers
865 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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1answer
100 views

‘He decided’ vs. ‘He had decided’

He decided that I could have the apartment before he looked at my credit report. I found that sentence in an exercise, and I wonder why it isn't: He had decided that I could have the ...
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2answers
162 views

“If there were” vs. “if there was” [closed]

I saw that there were already examples on this, but I didn't find any specific enough. My problem is this sentence: If there were anything that he didn't want, it was to hurt me. I previously ...
0
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1answer
76 views

“Used to go” vs. “attended” — which one is correct here?

I attended x institute for almost ten years. Last year I completed an advanced book entitled Landmark. Taking the advice of one of my teachers, I enrolled at another institute for a teacher ...
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4answers
127 views

Can “was” be abbreviated as “'s?”

Is it possible to write "'s" instead of "was" in a sentence or is completely wrong? For example: She was at home yersterday. She's at home yesterday.
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1answer
268 views

Past Simple or Present Perfect: Tried or Have Tried

I’ve tried to help you. The action happened in the past but I don’t say when. I tried to help you yesterday. The action happened in the past but I say when. Which is correct and which is not? I’m ...
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3answers
231 views

Past tense of “to cast” in the programming sense

In programming, to cast (also: to typecast) means to convert an object from one type to another (see Wikipedia). I'd like to know the correct past tense of to cast in this sense. Is it cast or ...
2
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3answers
1k views

“While” followed by simple past/past continuous

I'm currently reading "Molly Fyde and the Parsona Rescue" by Hugh Howey. Here's a short passage with my problem zone and the subsequent question: ...Well, I'm going to go do more Officser ...
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2answers
437 views

Fixed vs Have Fixed

Suppose I am writing an email to let people know I fixed a bug (and committed the fix). What should I write ? I have fixed the bug and committed the fix or I fixed the bug and committed ...
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3answers
282 views

Is the use of Simple Past correct in “Although I didn't study for the test, I got a good grade”?

As both actions refer to the past, shouldn't we use Past Perfect to refer to the action that happened first (or rather didn't happen in this particular case)? That is, I am thinking the appropriate ...
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3answers
195 views

Is “Were you in time?” the right question?

For example, Hey, you went a few minutes ago, but haven't given me a call yet. Were you in time for your job? Is this the right question to ask?
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2answers
646 views

The pronunciation of “ate”

I was talking to some friends and I said "I ate (/et/) chocolate yesterday...". Then my friend corrected me: "you ate (/eit/) chocolate...". I repeated my sentence with the /eit/ pronunciation and we ...
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2answers
278 views

“present perfect” because “simple past”

Is this grammatically correct? The teacher has sent several students home because they cheated on the quiz. Or does it have to be like this? The teacher has sent several students home ...
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1answer
813 views

“Sought” vs. “searched”

Can sought and searched be used interchangeably? As in "we searched for an article" versus "we sought an article". (Or if I got those two examples wrong, but there are correct examples where sought ...
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1answer
612 views

“Did you contacted them” or “did you contact them” [duplicate]

Did you contacted them? Did you contact them? Which of above sentences is correct? If both are correct, what's the difference between them? In which scenarios can I use them?
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1answer
3k views

“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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2answers
105 views

“I (had) hated her for long before we split” — Simple Past or Past Perfect?

I'm not certain whether using 'had hated' here is totally correct or not. And if it is not, please explain why.
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1answer
3k views

“Get up” vs. “wake up” [closed]

I am not a native English speaker. Whet I get up late in the morning, I get to inform my office that I am late for that particular day. And I am always confused if I should use "I just got up" or "I ...
1
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2answers
372 views

“It took a year until she got/had got/had gotten over it”

I am trying to figure out the correct use of perfect (past perfect) tenses: It took a year until she got over it. It took a year until she had got/gotten over it. Are both correct? If ...
2
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2answers
1k views

'have been' vs. 'went' with time words

Sometimes I see the following in ESL learners' writing: I have been to America two years ago. Am I correct in saying that it should be: I have been to America. I went to America two ...
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3answers
3k views

“I ever met” vs. “I have ever met”

In the following context, is it okay to say "I ever met" or is it "I have ever met"? Three years later you remain the coolest person I met.
2
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2answers
8k views

“Is used” vs. “has been used” vs. “was used”

I have three sentences of which I'm not sure which one is grammatical, and why. It refers to the Eiffel Tower. It is used as the symbol of Paris and of France for over a century. It was ...
3
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1answer
7k views

Which is better: “was dead” / “died” / “has passed away” in my case? [duplicate]

I came across a question in Chinese@SE, which is about a status update of someone's cat. I asked the OP in the comment whether the cat was dead at that time: I assume his cat was dead, can you ...
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1answer
3k views

Meaning of “as it was” in context

What does it mean "as it was" in this context? She was awakened by a shock, so sudden and severe that if Dorothy had not been lying on the soft bed she might have been hurt. As it was, the jar ...
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1answer
5k views

Changing present tense to past tense

I read the quote below in a book and wondered how it would read if I were to change the verbs to simple past. "I want to find something nice for them when I meet them later today." I can't seem ...
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2answers
148 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 ...
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1answer
223 views

Simple past vs past perfect [duplicate]

Simple past and past perfect are so confusing... Please tell me if any of the sentences below make (or makes?) sense: 1) She had already opened the package before I had the chance to tell her not ...
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1answer
123 views

Which expression is correct for past version of “think”? [closed]

I don't know which of the following expressions is correct for depicting past version of "think": I didn't think... I don't thought... I didn't thought...
1
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3answers
256 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 ...
4
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2answers
201 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
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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
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1answer
438 views

“I said I would/will go” — which one is correct? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Usage of “will” and “would” I said I will go. I said I would go. Which one is correct?
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1answer
612 views

“Did you wash your hands?” or “Have you washed your hands?” and why? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How do the tenses in English correspond temporally to one another? When do I use present perfect tense instead of the simple past? When will “Present Perfect vs. Past ...
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2answers
707 views

“Had been engaged when they married” vs. “were married” vs. “had married”

Which of the sentences below are grammatically correct? The couple had been engaged for five years when they married. The couple had been engaged for five years when they were married. The ...
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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 ...
2
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2answers
1k views

“He was telling me that he is going…” vs. “He told me that he is going…”

Is it right to say He was telling me that he will go on a vacation next week. while recounting your experience? Even though "he told me that he is going..." seems more appropriate, I would still ...