Who knows which tenses of English are not used or used merely?

I wonder which ones you do not use often.

As far as I know these are the tenses that you often do not use. am I right?

Will have been verb+ing

Would have been verb+ing

Many thanks

  • 3
    For most linguists, English has two tenses, present and past (sometimes described as non-present), and they are both used extensively. – Barrie England Jan 23 '14 at 18:37
  • 2
    Both the past and the present tense are used very very frequenty. There is normally at least one verb in the present or the past tense in every grammatical English sentence. Those are the only two tenses in English. Anything else that is wrongly called a "tense" is really a construction with auxiliary verbs in English, and there are thousands of such constructions. For details, see the English Verb Phrase Study Guide, which builds on the Logic Study Guide. – John Lawler Jan 23 '14 at 18:39
  • 'Merely' is not an adverb that can modify the action of the verb (it restricts the area / degree of application of the verb, and some would prefer to label it a 'limiting modifier). You want '...which English tenses are not used or are used [very] rarely?' – Edwin Ashworth Jan 23 '14 at 19:19
  • "will have been" - the future perfect is not common. "would have been" is more of a...well I wouldn't call it a tense...but anyway it is very common. Any other 'tenses' or verb forms you can specify? Otherwise we'd be here all day trying to listall forms and how common/rare they are. – Mitch Jan 23 '14 at 22:52

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