A set of forms taken by a verb to indicate the time and/or completeness and continuance of the action in relation to the time of the utterance.

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conditional tenses

please can anyone help me analyse the tenses in this conditional sentence: "If we did not stay up so late, we would not be so tired." What's the tense of "did not stay up" here? It's not past ...
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29 views

Correct usage of “has been” and “had been”

I would like to know whether any of these sentences are correct: Yesterday, I found out that all the money I had in my bank account has been stolen from me. Yesterday, I found out that all ...
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29 views

Logic of tense in fiction

In the following sentence, the narrator is telling a story about herself: A few minutes later, still hearing the fall of their hooves, I called out over my shoulder, “Nothing for you, cows. Nothing ...
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32 views
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3answers
61 views

Use of “there's” in plural [duplicate]

Well we know that is is the correct form for singular and are is the correct form for plural, right? As such "There is a great pizza place in Chicago" would be correct in prose or dialogue as would ...
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60 views

When to use 'is' and 'has'? [on hold]

I have a question about where to use is and has. Examples: The tea boy is come. or The tea boy has come. Lunch is ready. or Lunch has ready. He is come back. or He has come back. She is assigned ...
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2answers
37 views

Supercede or Supersede?

I work with thousands of part numbers. Some of the referenced items are now unavailable, and a replacement has been found. In communicating to my users, do I say "x supercedes to y" or "x ...
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1answer
24 views

Going back and forth in time gramatically?

The sentence(s): The ice breaks beneath them, and they are stuck in their car while it is being filled with ice-cold water. Dawn’s mother had tried to convince Sam, Dawn’s father, not to go on the ...
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23 views

Tense of character sketch [closed]

When writing a character sketch of character from a short melodrama, in which tense should we write, past indefinite or present indefinite?
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1answer
53 views

If I 'will' have the chance to go to the US [closed]

Is it wrong to say "If I will have the chance to go to the US..."? This is in the context of expressing one's dream/plan in the future. Is it better to say "If I have the chance (in the future, say 10 ...
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0answers
25 views

“I love” versus “I've loved” usage [migrated]

Which quote is proper? "I believe in love at first sight because I've loved my mom since I opened my eyes." or "I believe in love at first sight because I love my mom since I opened my ...
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3answers
65 views

I worked vs. I was working vs. I have been working all day [closed]

I teach English to beginners and I usually begin the lesson by asking them how they spent their day. Many of them say "Oh, I worked all day today", and sometimes I hear "I was working today". ...
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21 views

'The thing is done with' tense

In need some help describing this writing style: A procedure can be written as "The bowl is washed with water, then....." or "The bowl was washed with water, then...." The second version is third ...
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1answer
44 views

expressing uncertainty in the past: “could be” vs. “would have been”

Yesterday I wrote the below snippet in an email, but looking at it again it doesn't sound right: Last term I did way too much teaching related stuff (my fault, didn’t really know how much time ...
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42 views

“can” vs. “could”

"This case report suggests that a lung embolism CAN/COULD occur in a patient with no pulmonary vulnerabilities." Which of these verbs is correct in this sentence?
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2answers
49 views

Past Simple or Present Perfect with “Never”? [duplicate]

I have this example in my practice book where I need to use the Past Simple or Present Perfect: My grandfather died before I was born. I have never met him. The right answer is "I never met ...
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1answer
40 views

Can the choice between Present Perfect vs Past Simple be influenced by external events?

What is meant by 'an external event'? For example, death. Let there be two celebrities, one who is still alive (Leonardo DiCaprio), and one who is dead (Christopher Lee, who played Saruman in the ...
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1answer
29 views

If you will have vs If you have

If you will have dinner at home, tell me. or If you have dinner at home, tell me. What is the difference between the two sentences? Which one sounds natural?
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26 views

“What do I think?” vs “What am I thinking?”

Here's a fragment from King John and the Abbot: “And first, when thou seest me here in this stead, With my crowne of golde so fair on my head, Among all my liege-men so noble of birthe, Tell ...
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3answers
55 views

Would that be correct ? I finished eating at 7:30 AM. = I have eaten at 7:30 AM [closed]

Would that be correct ? I finished eating at 7:30 AM. = I have eaten at 7:30 AM.
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1answer
46 views

Is it gramatically correct to use past tense when referring to the future?

I was doing some testing on my local machine that involved changing my system clock to a future date. When I compiled my project, I received warnings that read: Warning: xxxx.class was edited in ...
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21 views

“Will Have Done” tense- meaning and exmamples [migrated]

Looking for sufficient definitions and explanations of this tense, I noticed that one meaning will usually refer to something someone "will have done" as something that "will have been ...
2
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1answer
49 views

Early Modern English - How Many Uses of Conjugated Verbs in a Single Sentence

Using Early Modern English, can I have more than one conjugated verb in a sentence? For example, would I be more correct to say, "Thinkest thou that thou could take us to see him?" (Note that only ...
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1answer
44 views

Tense of verb after conjunction

Jumping straight into my question, consider these two sentences: He had finished the recitation and closed the book. He had finished the recitation and had closed the book. Which of the above two ...
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36 views

Leaped or leapt, past and perfect tenses [duplicate]

Here is my passage, more or less: Dick and Jane leapt from the boat into the icy waters of the North Pacific. Had they not leaped, they would not have been eaten by sharks as the rescue helicopter ...
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1answer
284 views

“I hope you enjoyed the holidays and are having a great new year.” Grammar Issues? [closed]

"I hope you enjoyed the holidays and are having a great new year." Is this grammatically correct? Firstly, there is a tense change. Possibly other problems. Obviously this is correct: "I hope you ...
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3answers
44 views

How to use 'is Supposed to' or 'was supposed to' [closed]

Apparently Mary was supposed to be an insomniac.
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28 views

“kindly request that something IS cancelled”, or “WILL BE cancelled?” [duplicate]

Which is the correct usage? We kindly request that the phone line is cancelled. We kindly request that the phone line will be cancelled.
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2answers
90 views

In the present tense, can I use “ought to have” where “have” means “to possess”?

I'm not a native English speaker. All the examples of "ought to have" in my grammar book are in the past tense. But can I use it in the present tense to say that someone probably has something? ...
3
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3answers
108 views

What tense is this is “will have had to have seen”?

I was making a table of the sentence "You must/have to see it." ("You see it.") in different tenses and moods in German with the English equivalent. I ended up writing these three sentences down (in ...
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1answer
61 views

Double use of future tense after “I hope that”

I was wondering whether it was correct to use "will" twice in the following sentence: I hope that 2016 will be the year I will get to travel. Using the present tense in the second half of the ...
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1answer
37 views

Should I use simple past or present perfect in the following sentence?

In the sentence: "I (have) never memorized vocabulary - I (have) simply read many books" I had looked at grammar websites and the suggested duplicates, but didn't find an answer. Which verb tense ...
2
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2answers
78 views

A since-clause in present tense marking off a period of time

Question: In English, can you use a present tense since-clause to mark off a period that starts at some time in the past and continues to and includes the present? Background: Unfortunately, my ...
2
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2answers
27 views

Is the use of “can” in descriptive statements simply a matter of preference? [closed]

If I were describing a motorcycle to a potential buyer, I would have to describe its specs. The usual selling points for adrenaline junkies are top speed and 0-60 MPH acceleration (or 0-100 for track ...
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3answers
46 views

Which one is correct and in which situation? [closed]

If I had seen you, of course I would have talked to you If I saw you, I would talk to you. Also, why do we use past perfect to describe an incident that didn't happen. Sorry, if these sound ...
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3answers
398 views

How to refer to dead and alive persons together?

Usually we refer to a dead person using the past tense. For example: Albert Einstein was wrong about... But when we are talking about both dead and alive persons in the same sentence, should we ...
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2answers
51 views

Can a hypothetical question be in past tense? Please see my example

If you passed a subject without learning anything valuable about it, did that subject really help you?
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1answer
40 views

“We are proud of our Police” or “We proud of our Police”? [closed]

Which one is appropriate to say? which one should I use? We are proud of our Police. We proud of our Police.
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3answers
77 views

Structural Ambiguity in Past Perfect Tense Usage

As we all know, the past perfect tense is used to indicate an action that takes place before another one. I ran across this article on The New York Times website today, which begins with these ...
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1answer
30 views

The use of past perfect

''When I read Herodotus, I seem to hear some Eastern peasant narrate and “philosophize.” —Not for nothing had he traveled among the Scythians.'' E. M. Cioran, Drawn and Quartered Can someone ...
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1answer
41 views

Perfect Continuous

I know we use Past Perfect Continuous when an event in the past continue up until another event in the past: I had been talking with her for over an hour before Tony arrived. Can we use it when ...
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34 views

If you have a sentence that implies that something happened in the past, do you talk about it in past tense if it is an event in a book?

I don't know whether the title is clear or not, so I'll try to give an adequate example: From these brief references in the Lord of the Rings, you can picture what Middle-earth is like before he ...
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58 views

What tense is “acknowledge” in in “provided he acknowledge”?

The Texas Constitution has a sentence that ends with "provided he acknowledge the existence of a Supreme Being." What tense is the verb "acknowledge" in here?
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1answer
72 views

He is the only/first player who has won GS twice

He is the only player who has won GS twice. He is the first player who has won GS twice. Are both sentences grammatically valid? If the tennis player is still active, can I use the ...
3
votes
1answer
57 views

Can I use a noun phrase with “after” or “before” to talk about specific past events or “past perfect” is required?

I know that gerunds can be used with before or after in the present tense when talking about facts: I always turn off the lights before going to bed. But can I use a gerund with "after" or ...
3
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2answers
48 views

“Whenever I discuss X, people don't know what I'm talking about” — why the progressive tense?

Consider the two sentences: Whenever I discuss X, people don't know what I'm talking about. Whenever I discuss X, people don't know what I talk about. I think the first one should be ...
6
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1answer
66 views

When constructing a hypothetical sentence, do I have to keep all the tenses in the past?

If I bought that book, it would be so I had something to give to you on your birthday. Now, as far as i know, in hypothetical sentences, you have to backshift all tenses one step to the past. So: ...
3
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1answer
66 views

Is a past tense protasis necessarily hypothetical when followed by an apodosis with “would have”?

Is a protasis with a verb in the past tense necessarily interpreted as a hypothetical condition when followed by an apodosis with "would have" + past participle? For example, is the sentence If ...
2
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2answers
53 views

Combining past and present tense

I get a bit confused when you can and can't combine the present and past tense. For example, look at the following sentence: When the plane landed, I looked out the window because I wanted to see ...
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1answer
37 views

Omitting “will” from a sentence

I am writing an essay and I am not sure whether I should place "will" in this sentence or not. The experience I will gain living in Panama will assist me in understanding how Central Americans ...