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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50 views

Why people use past tense when talking about something always true

Examples: xxx was the founder of ... xxx was the first ... This does not limit to living person/person passed away, but also items. To me the status of the first, the founder of etc. does not change ...
3
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1answer
74 views

Tenses with “until then” - Is past perfect needed or is it optional?

If I understood correctly, "until now" can be "until then" in the past sentences. Would this be correct? 1) It was a new approach that was never successfully performed until then. or should I ...
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0answers
14 views

When should I use: I did, had done or have done? [duplicate]

Please explain when I should use: I did vs. I had done or I had done vs. I have done? Sometimes I tend to get confused about which one to use. Thanks.
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0answers
29 views

“I didn't know you golf” vs “I didn't know you golfed” [duplicate]

While reading a popular author I came across: "I left my clubs at home, so I can't play." "Oh? I didn't know (that) you golf." This sounds wrong, but presumably it was passed by at least ...
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0answers
26 views

Difference between 'we both have' and 'we have both' [duplicate]

What would be the difference in meaning between the phrase "We have both noticed a change in your demeanor." and the phrase "We both have noticed a change in your demeanor."?
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1answer
66 views

usage of 'being able to'

When to use the word 'being able to' and what exactly it means? Example: 1. Not being able to run the report 2. that is the one which prevents us from being able to run the report Why not we say 1. ...
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1answer
30 views

Pres. perfect + going to + past infinitive

I have seen the following sentence: For four months now John has been going to have finished his novel by today. I hope I understand it (I assume it says that he has been trying to finish his ...
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2answers
65 views

Is there any difference at all between these three sentences? [on hold]

I figured you wouldn't come if I had told you. I figured you wouldn't have come if I told you. I figured you wouldn't have come if I had told you.
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2answers
512 views

Past simple vs. past perfect

Here is an exercise from Intermediate Language Practice by Michael Vince: (Please note that I have replaced all the blanks in the exercise with the answers given in the answer key.) Put each verb ...
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0answers
28 views

Should I use an article? “Forum 2014”

I and my friends have a groop chat in a social network, one of them called it "the forum 2014". But i think it should be just "forum 2014" without an article. What do you think?
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5answers
18k views

“What needs to be done” vs “What is needed to be done”

When you are looking at a task remaining, it seems right to me to say, "what needs to be done" in the simple present tense. I have seen some people write "what is needed to be done." While I don't ...
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1answer
76 views

What tense do we use with “since”? [closed]

Consider these two sentences: The money has been delivered since 1st January 2000. The money was delivered since 1st January 2000. Are both of them grammatical? What may be the difference ...
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1answer
37 views

the correct tense of “derive”

I'm a non-native English speaker. Given the sentence: The English word " olive " derives from the Latin word "oliva". Why is the present tense used, not the past tense? If I say, The English word ...
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2answers
276 views

I saw her dance/dancing? I saw a flash of lightning strike/striking? I caught her steal/stealing?

Meta: I found a very similar post asking the difference between "I saw him cross" and "I saw him crossing". I have three additional questions on sentences of this form. In the post I am referring ...
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2answers
222 views

Correct verb form in two sentences

I can't explain why the following sentences are wrong, although I can correct them. (a) INCORRECT — The table shows the average amount of time advertisements on the Internet lasting. ...
3
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3answers
100 views

I panicked or I was panicked?

I want to refer to a situation that happened months ago. So what should I use? I panicked or I was panicked?
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2answers
99 views

Is the tense change of the verb “need” to “needed” mandatory?

If the tense change of the verb "need" to "needed" is not mandatory, then if it was changed then how would it affect the meaning in the sentences below? If they asked for help, I would provide ...
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2answers
40 views

Should we use “lay” or “lays” in this context? [duplicate]

I found this sentence in Longman dictionary: The crux of the problem lay in the lack of equipment. I think it should be "lays" instead of "lay", but even when I googled, I noticed there are more ...
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1answer
43 views

He has only laid down for an hour today? [duplicate]

I would like to express that a person has only reclined for an hour so far today. Is it correct to say: He has only laid down for an hour so far today. or is it perhaps: He has only lay ...
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2answers
204 views

Tenses in sentences

I have been taught to use only one tense in one sentence/paragraph, but I've always been confused... For example, in the following sentence: "In one study, there were only deficits observed in ...
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1answer
80 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 ...
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2answers
73 views

“It is” or “it was” in this scenario?

Is the following sentence correct? I still remembered that the school manager in the seminar talked really sweetly about how bright future it is if a student could finish their courses. Clearly, ...
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2answers
1k views

Using “will” after “if”

I've been told that native-speakers don't ever use "will" after "if", and that saying it this way is a not-native style. So from the film (Harry Potter, pt5) I noticed a line that confused me. Look ...
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1answer
46 views

How to enumerate activities I did

I'm writing a CV and in one section I'd like to enumerate the activities I did. Should I write I proved ... I participated ... I mentored ... ... or Proved ... Participated ... Mentored ... ... ...
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3answers
4k views

“I am trying to learn” vs “I try to learn”

What is the difference between present simple and present progressive when it comes to actions like the following? At school, I am trying to learn a wide array of subjects. At school, I try ...
2
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2answers
55 views

Present Progressive or Simple Present for things that could be considered as a repeated action or as an action happening right now?

There's one thing about Simple Present versus Present Progressive which is still not quite clear to me. The rough overview is1: Use simple present for repeated actions, general things. Use present ...
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1answer
30 views

Which tense would you use… is or was? [duplicate]

I am writing a note to a young man's parents after meeting him and don't know which tense is correct. Would you say: Don and I were so impressed with how genuinely kind, well-mannered and articulate ...
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1answer
40 views

“experienced” vs. “have experienced”? (Simple past vs. Existential sense of perfect)?

Can you tell me which ones of these correct? "Together we experienced our first joy ride." or "Together we have experienced our first joy ride." "Together we learnt to ride bicycle." or "Together we ...
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1answer
196 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: ...
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3answers
110 views

Is “was always with you” or “had always been with you” grammatically correct?

In those days wherever you went I had always been with you like a shadow. In those days wherever you went I was always with you like a shadow. Which one is grammatically correct?
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5answers
4k views

Is it correct to say “What was your name?”?

Is it correct to say "What was your name?"? The reason I am asking this is, generally the name of the person will not change. One should say "What is your name?" ...
2
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4answers
78 views

“only if we ignored X, might Y happen”?

In spite of the general guidance on conditionals found on this site, I am struggling with which tenses to use in the following sentence to properly convey what I mean: Only if we ignored these ...
0
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1answer
125 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!
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5answers
6k views

Future tense in conditional clauses

All the textbooks I have ever come across during the course of my studying English emphasize that future tense should not be used in conditional clauses. For example, If it rains in the evening, ...
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2answers
31 views

We recommend that he provide/provides?

To my ear "We recommend that he provide an appropriate response" sounds better than "provides" what is this tense/construct called and which is right ?
2
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3answers
339 views

Should I use past tense or present tense when writing check-in/commit comment? [duplicate]

This question is quite specific but I am not sure which verb tense I should use when committing/checking in code. If I fix a bug and checking in the code, should I write: Fixes bug on feature A ...
9
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3answers
5k views

Should I use past tense when I'm asked to describe a picture?

If you are being asked to describe a picture, what tense would you use?
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2answers
120 views

Question about tenses used in Seinfeld show: “what you were doing tomorrow night”

In the sentences "Did she even ask you what you were doing tomorrow night? If you were busy?" occurring at about 0:42 - 0:43 in this clip, why was past tense used in "What you were doing ...
4
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2answers
275 views

Grammatical structure of a complex sentence

Many things are unclear in the following sentence, and I want your help to understand them: 1. Its grammatical structure is complicated, and I can understand nothing from it. 2. What is the ...
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1answer
113 views

Does using “Their watch is ended” over “Their watch has ended” change the meaning of the sentence?

I've been watching this little HBO show by the name of Game of Thones. Perhaps you have heard of it. In the most recent episode the following line is used (and also happens to be the title of the ...
2
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1answer
107 views

Dubious Tenses in Airline Preflight Speech

I fly a lot of places (usually within the United States). When I take Delta, the flight attendants seem to recite (with minor differences) a prepared preflight speech detailing safety information. ...
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1answer
94 views

Reported speech, question in a conditional sentence

I've been struggling with this exercise: "Let's drive on to the next village and try the hotel there," he said. "But what'll we do if that's full too?" I said. "We'll just have to sleep in the car," ...
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1answer
52 views

Past Simple or Past Perfect Continuous? [closed]

If an action started in the past and lasted for some time, which tense should be used Past Simple or Past Perfect Continuous? For example, I worked out for two hours yesterday or I had been working ...
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0answers
136 views

English does not have a future tense--what do you think? [closed]

Some say English does not have a future tense. In fact, wikipedia describes it as follows. English grammar provides a number of ways to indicate the future nature of an occurrence. Some argue that ...
2
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2answers
4k views

Can we use should /would and /could in Future perfect tense

I would have finished my home work by evening . He should have been more careful. Can these be used as future perfect tense ?
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2answers
68 views

“I've been waiting” Vs “I waited”

Let's say for example this sentence : Finally, you're here! Where were you ? What took you so long ? _______! 1- I've been waiting here for hours. 2- I waited here for hours. which one is correct to ...
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4answers
9k views

will arrive or will be arriving?

I will arrive in Sydney on 16th September. or I will be arriving in Sydney on 16th September. As a formal email, which one should I choose? or is there a better one?
2
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2answers
42 views

Where to use the present tense and where to use the past in this sentence?

Thus morality gave in to politics, so much so that the standard on which to judge whether an act is right or wrong and whether a person is good or bad was reduced to loyalty to the political head. ...
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2answers
59 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"
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1answer
26 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 ...