Questions about the Simple Past tense.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

2
votes
2answers
243 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 ...
1
vote
3answers
90 views

“I wish I didn't do” vs. “I wish I hadn't done”

Now I feel sick. I wish I [didn't eat/hadn't eaten] pork with cheese for dinner. I would use "hadn't eaten" as it was my dinner but "now I feel sick" confuses me.
1
vote
1answer
37 views

What is the difference between “broke” and “was broken”?

What is the difference between "broke" and "be broken" in the following? The pot broke as I kicked it. The pot was broken as I kicked it.
1
vote
2answers
124 views

Past Simple and Progressive; depending on the sentence?

My question is based on Past Simple and Past Progressive. I had a test a couple weeks ago, and there was this sentence with 2 verbs that you had to choose one to make the sentence true grammatically: ...
0
votes
1answer
245 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 ...
2
votes
1answer
133 views

“He was drinking coffee and left the cafe . . .” Why does this sound wrong?

I'm trying to find mistakes in this sentence and even the corrected versions do not sound grammatically correct. Original sentence: He was drinking coffee and left the café to catch his bus. ...
2
votes
2answers
51 views

Present perfect or past simple - “the best movie I (saw/'ve seen) this year”

I know the rule is to use past simple when you specify the time when the described action happened, but I strangely dislike this sentence and I'm not sure if the rule applies: "It's the best movie I ...
1
vote
2answers
48 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 ...
1
vote
4answers
49 views

The usage of “if” in sentences that deal with what is possible to happen in the future [closed]

I recently came up with a problem to form sentences with a particular structure. I thought that I already knew how to form such sentences subconsciously, but by listening to native speakers ...
0
votes
1answer
22 views

Past perfect and simple perfect difference

This is an excerpt from a newspaper. In September 2014 the Delhi high court had restrained the institute from using words like...... Why are we using "had" here.. Can we use past indefinite?
3
votes
4answers
243 views

Where have you been for your last vacation?

I'm about to work at an English Hagwon in Korea. Hagwon is the Korean term for a private language school so unique to this nation only. I received this textbook and on its first page there are some ...
2
votes
1answer
51 views

Past Perfect Confusion

In a book these two forms are acceptable: Before a complete version of Louisa May Alcott's novel Little Women appeared in 1880, the book had been published in two separate volumes. AND ...
2
votes
1answer
80 views

Past Perfect vs. Present Perfect

I am a new member on this site. So please guide me somewhere else if I post anything incorrect. I have been working on these two sentence corrections that ask about Present Perfect, Past Perfect and ...
0
votes
3answers
7k 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.
0
votes
1answer
34 views

Is it normal to use the present perfect to confirm a statement in the simple past?

Is it normal to use the present perfect to confirm a statement in the simple past ? Q : I visited Paris last year. A : Oh, you have visited Paris ? Q : She travelled through Eastern ...
7
votes
4answers
2k views

“Sally broke her leg” vs. “Sally has broken her leg” Does switching the past simple with the present perfect affect its 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 ...
8
votes
1answer
2k views

Why is “transferred” written with two R's?

Why is transferred written with two R's? I am a native speaker of Dutch, and in my point of view this isn't logical; there are other words like coloured and endeavoured that only have -ed added after ...
2
votes
2answers
20k 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 ...
0
votes
2answers
87 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 ...
0
votes
2answers
83 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 ...
0
votes
1answer
124 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 ...
0
votes
3answers
747 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 ...
3
votes
4answers
574 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 ...
0
votes
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?
1
vote
4answers
17k views

“Get used” vs “got used”

I'm learning English grammar with the book by Raymond Murphy: English Grammar in Use [3rd Edition]. In the exercises for unit 61, I have to complete the sentences using used to. I can't understand why ...
-2
votes
2answers
7k 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 to ...
0
votes
1answer
159 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 ...
0
votes
2answers
193 views

Simple past vs. present perfect [closed]

I have a few questions about simple situations. What should I say to another person right after falling? a) I fell b) I have fallen What should I say to another person right after throwing a ball? ...
0
votes
1answer
148 views

Past or present perfect in: “The ball fell down” or “The ball has fallen down” [closed]

I dropped something onto the floor just now. What verb tense would be appropriate to describe the situation right after falling? The ball fell down The ball has fallen down
1
vote
1answer
123 views

What are the proper verb tenses of this sentence?

First a little history before I pose my question. Without this history my question may not fully make sense. King Fahd of Saudi Arabia had a stroke in 1995. After this stroke, Crown Prince Abdullah ...
8
votes
4answers
5k views

Usage question: “I hadn't drank any coffee before I lived in Italy.”

Ok, so as an English teacher, I know that in the present and past perfect tenses, the auxiliary verb have is followed by the past participle form of the verb. Using most verbs, I find that this is ...
10
votes
1answer
14k views

Which is correct: “has died” or “died”?

To me, using Present Perfect form means the event can occur again. So, saying someone has died may not be grammatically correct. Also, I noticed (it might be just coincidence): passed away ...
6
votes
6answers
20k views

“Told” vs. “said to” somebody

I told him that you hate him I said to him that you hate him I was choosing between these two options, and I can't help thinking about the subtle differences. For example, "I told him ...
7
votes
3answers
2k views

Is “forwent” used much?

I see "forgo" used quite a bit, and "forgone" is quite common too. I can't say I've ever seen or heard of "forwent" and in fact, I had to look it up to make sure it even was a word at all. Is it ...
1
vote
1answer
133 views

special usage of the past simple?

I'm reading Jennifer Haigh's short story Sublimation, and I came across a sentence that grabbed my attention. "Their son's habit isn't news to her, not really, though she always imagined he'd ...
4
votes
2answers
625 views

The habitual past “would” versus “simple past” tense

One can use the habitual past 'would' to describe past events. For example one could say, Jim would spend weekends at the farm. He would cut weed and water the plants. One can also use the ...
0
votes
1answer
3k views

“I have already [seen]” vs “I already [saw]” [duplicate]

I have already (past participle) I already (simple past) I feel like when I'm reading literature or any serious writing, the present perfect is always used with "already". I would guess that ...
2
votes
2answers
2k 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 ...
4
votes
2answers
417 views

Can “earlier this year” be used in the present perfect?

Is "earlier this year" a specific time reference? i.e. Can you say (A) is definitely wrong and (B) is right? (A) Earlier this year, ABC, Inc., has conducted a survey. (B) Earlier this year, ABC, ...
5
votes
2answers
541 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? ...
1
vote
1answer
712 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. ...
0
votes
3answers
1k 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 ...
0
votes
2answers
367 views

Reported speech in Minute taking

I have to take minutes of a meeting, but I am quite confused at the moment. Here are some sentences which got me confused: ''Mr Johnson: Latin America and Asia produce the same products, so I suggest ...
0
votes
4answers
316 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 ...
8
votes
2answers
28k views

“Fall”, “fell”, “felled”

How is the causative form of fall used in English? In the present tense, often enough, A tree falls in the woods, but a logger falls trees as well. but in the past tense, A tree fell in the ...
6
votes
4answers
45k views

“Lept” vs. “leapt” vs. “leaped”

After reading this discussion, I'd like to know what example sentences distinguish the meaning of the words lept, leapt, and leaped from each other?
0
votes
3answers
229 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 ...
5
votes
2answers
487 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. ...
1
vote
0answers
2k 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
2
votes
1answer
86 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 ...