I would like to ask two question regarding the use of " to promise". First one is that if I can make it clear by saying only one sentence that a promise was not kept by someone in the past.

For example, Jamie promised that he would give his car to Alex for last weekend but he did not. When Alex mention this to his another friend, do I need to explain he didn't keep the promise with another sentence or is there a way to say it in one sentence?

  • Alex : Jamie promised that he would lent me his car for the last weekend.

How to make it clear Jamie didn't keep his promise.

Does Alex have to add that

but he didn't keep his promise

My second question is that if I can use present future tense with past tense form of "to promise" for a promise made in the past to do something in the future.

For example :

Somebody says in June 2016 that she will visit her friend after January 1, 2017. So because we haven't reach to January 1, 2017 yet, should I still use "would" for the action that will take place in the future.

Can I say :

She promised last June that she will visit us on January 1, 2017.

Because I didn't this kind of structures in the dictionaries I looked up , I decided to ask it.

closed as too broad by user140086, BladorthinTheGrey, jimm101, NVZ, tchrist Dec 15 '16 at 2:34

Please edit the question to limit it to a specific problem with enough detail to identify an adequate answer. Avoid asking multiple distinct questions at once. See the How to Ask page for help clarifying this question. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

  • If you ask two unrelated questions, ELU users can't vote based on the merits of one question. Your first question is more off-topic than the second one which is borderline or probably duplicate. Please delete one question and ask separately. Don't forget one question per post is the guideline of Stack Exchange. The answer to your first question is you don't have to repeat those words. You can just add "but he didn't." You don't use "lent" after "would". – user140086 Dec 11 '16 at 14:18
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    @Rathony - I think these would qualify as subquestions. – aparente001 Dec 11 '16 at 23:03
  • @aparente001 How is the second question related? One is asking about verb "promise" and another is about tense. Look at the number of upvotes on the question and answers. It's up to the OP to decide. It has 4 close-votes. If both of them are duplicates, which question will you use to close this as duplicate? – user140086 Dec 12 '16 at 7:29
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    @Rathony - I tied the two together with a common approach in my answer. One might not find my answer convincing, but at least it can be seen that in my view, the two questions are related to each other, in the manner described in my answer. – aparente001 Dec 12 '16 at 7:46
  • @aparente001 I don't think your post answers the question sufficiently. Your answer actually proves why the question should be split into two question. Anyway, I will move on. – user140086 Dec 12 '16 at 8:33

If you'd like to spare yourself the usage of a second clause in the sentence you give as an example, I suggest you use promise as a noun rather than a verb

Jamie didn't keep his promise to lend the car to Alex for the last weekend.

As per your second question, the sequence of tenses requires to substitute would for will since the verb in the main clause is in a past tense (past simple in this particular case). The rule applies regardless of whether the reporter reached Jan 1st 2017 or not him or herself.


In both cases, usage of promise will be easier if you use an infinitive after promise.

Alex : Jamie didn't keep his promise to lend me his car for the last weekend.

Alex : Jamie betrayed his promise to lend me his car for the last weekend.

Last June, she promised to visit us on January 1, 2017.

This isn't providing what you asked for explicitly, but I am hopeful it will solve your underlying problem, which I suspect is that you are looking for more succinctness.

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