Questions tagged [past-perfect]

Questions about Past Perfect tense

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Can I use 'was' instead of 'had been' in this sentence? [closed]

The blood on the pavement had been washed away by the rain overnight. Why did the speaker use had been and not was? Can anyone tell me all of the usages of past perfect tense for a single sentence?
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Past Perfect in 2nd Conditional?

Ok, I know that in 2nd cond. you use simple past in your sentence and perfect past is used when saying that something had happened before something else happened, but is it correct to say this? : If ...
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Is it true that it's OK to omit the pluperfect (past-perfect) in casual speech?

The pluperfect is used to indicate what is relatively earlier than the compared clause. But in conversation I hear people omit it all the time. Examples: I haven't spoken to the President since the ...
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Backshifting “if” statements [duplicate]

Let's say someone said this: "We planned to cancel the event if he got sick." In backshifting this statement, are both of these statements appropriate and equivalent? "They said they ...
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Past perfect tense and Since

Lenny had slept most of the way since leaving Texas. I found this sentence from Cambridge Dictionary. I have been taught that you use past perfect tense to emphasize an event in the past that took ...
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Can we use specific time when using past simple with past perfect?

I wonder if it's possible and correct to put a specific time like this. I had finished my homework at 6 am. before I went to school at 7 am.
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What is the passive voice of a sentence that is structured as 'past perfect' before 'simple past'

For example, how would the sentence below be expressed in the passive voice? I had completed all tasks before they arrived.
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Past of it'd better be

I was just watching TV and one of the characters in the show said something like "I don't know what happened there, but it'd've better been good". Realizing that the deconstruction of that ...
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What is the sequence of events in this excerpt from a book? [Past Perfect and Past Continuous]

The excerpt: But this was not all. There was social revolt too and this often transcended the racial struggle. The disenfranchised lower classes were demanding the ballot, and the workers were ...
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Had had confusion [closed]

1.Last year I had had the idea to buy a new television, but now I'm not sure I want to. 2 Last year I had the idea to buy a new television, but now I'm not sure I want to Both of these sentences ...
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Past Perfect (Progressive) problem

I was helping my nephew with some homework but this time I reached my limit. I am not quite sure what the correct answer is here or even if there is only one good answer. One has to finish the ...
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Past-perfect tense

Consider the following question: Monica had dinner at home. She ______ dinner when she ______ home. (a) ate, came (b) had eaten, had come (c) had eaten, came (d) ate, had come According to me answer ...
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Past perfect tense

Consider the following question: The doorbell woke me up. When the doorbell _______________, I _______________ up. The possible answer for the above statement is: rang, woke had rung, woke had rung, ...
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“…to have been” or “… to having been”?

When I help someone and the person thanks me, instead of saying "You're welcome", I want to express that "I am happy that I was able to help you", but I want to say it with a much ...
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Past Perfect or Past Simple

I want to understand if we need to keep using past perfect in a long sentence. (in speaking and writing english) For example, "I want to tell you a story that happened to me in summer. I started ...
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Question about use of Past Perfect Tense

Could you explain the difference between the two sentences in the quote? Bates threw the grunt into the sky as soon as we'd made vacuum. One of the surviving grunts grabbed the carcass and jumped ...
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206 views

“Have you seen him recently?” or “Did you see him recently?” [closed]

Have you seen him recently? or Did you see him recently? Which of these is correct?
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The past perfect use. Is this sentence correct?

Now she knew he would be unstoppable. That day, there had been no doubts inside of him when he had wielded his sword. Is this correct use of the past perfect tense in the second sentence, considering ...
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57 views

Why past tense and not past perfect

I came across a passage. Passage happens in the past ,and one of two characters is telling a story that happened before that day. That’s why I thought the story part of the passage should have been in ...
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1answer
106 views

Verb tense confusion - how to correctly use past perfect in a past tense narrative

Okay, scenario: In a novel set in narrative past tense, there's a sentence, "We had become friends when nobody had liked him and it had seemed no one ever would." Is the past perfect being ...
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Past perfect continuous with verb “fall” as the second condition

Is "fall" in the sentence below in its correct conjugation? "Had this been related to an existing cases, or fall within the supported thresholds, we would have..." "fallen&...
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106 views

Are “had served” and “had been serving” both acceptable in the situation?

I have encountered this question in my test, The model answer is "had been serving", but I have written down "had served" A)Mr.James had been serving this school for ten years when ...
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1answer
37 views

Why the shift to past perfective when the whole sentence is in the present?

I was looking at Collins' definition of double-cross: If someone you trust double-crosses you, they do something which harms you instead of doing something they had promised to do. So we have double-...
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“they had renovated” vs “had been renovating”

How can I understand the sentence 1b? 1 a When I last went to Moscow, they had renovated St Basil's Cathedral.    b When I last went to Moscow, they had been renovating St Basil's Cathedral The ...
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Can I transition from past perfect tense to past tense while still referring to the past perfect context?

If I am describing a situation in past tense, then moving into past perfect, can I drop the "hads" so as to use simple past tense verb forms again, but still keep reference to the past ...
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Present Perfect with simple past allowed?

Background: I had the following Past Perfect sentence: I had talked to the teacher before she left school. Question: Is it's Present Perfect version also allowed? I have talked to the teacher before ...
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Past perfect in reported statements of complex sentence

If the sentence is reported statements, whether both parts of the sentence have to be in Past Perfect or only the first one? For example: "I had loved her for more than half of my life," she ...
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Would you say, “She was quiet after she'd been back from school,” or “She was quiet after she'd gotten back from school”?

I don't know if these two choices are just preference or not. On a side note, would it sound better if you say "ever since" or "since" in place of the word "after"? ...
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The first paragraph of “Leviathan Wakes” is driving me crazy. What do you think about it?

I feel like the author gets his tenses all mixed up as soon as he finishes the prologue. At the very least, the first paragraph is difficult to parse. Check it out: A hundred and fifty years before, ...
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The Past Perfect in the narrative set in the present

Have been reading a lot of fanfics lately, so what follows is quotations from unedited stories published on AO3. These are real excerpts from the writings of the US and the UK authors: She looks up ...
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Past Perfect Sentence structure for yes/no questions [closed]

Which of these is correct and why? Had not you seen this movie before? Had you not seen this movie before?
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A question concerning Past Perfect continuous

He had been drinking milk out the cartoon when mom walked into the kitchen I'm reading past perfect continuous in my grammar book and the rule says it is used for an that began before a certain point ...
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2answers
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Past perfect or present perfect?

We didn't go to the party last night because we have had a fever Or We didn't got to the party last night because we had had a fever I know the past perfect describes an completed before a certain ...
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Present perfect or past perfect with Already

Look at the sentence : • When we got to the theater, the play (already start) how should I write it properly? • When we got to the theater, the play already has started. Or •When we got to the theater,...
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A question concerning Past Perfect Tense [closed]

I met him in London in 1996. I had seen him last five years before. This is an example given for Present Perfect Tense in my grammar book. Does the sentence mean the last time the speaker had met the ...
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**Primary English**Tony thought that his mother <has>/<had> already gone to work

Could any English master please help explain why the underline is HAS rather than HAD? Everything happened in the past, so I thought we should use had. Thanks a lot. Tony loves dogs. He has two dogs. ...
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Simple past or past perfect?

Is this sentence grammatically correct? I had felt a strange panic as I was parted from it. (Song of Achilles, Madeline Miller) It seems rather strange to me to pair the past perfect with the simple ...
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Past Past Perfect

If we have one action, we can use Past Simple/Past Continuous I found out If we have two actions, we can use Past Perfect/Past Perfect Continuous for the one which is the most ancient and Past ...
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Using past simple tense after past perfect

When X happened, I had not taken my pills because I hadn't had them with me. When X happened, I had not taken my pills because I didn't have them with me. Is the second sentence ...
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Which is correct? A true warrior would never attack those who (had/have) hurt him

Regardless of the meaning of the sentence, what should it be? "Had" because I used "would" or "Have" because it is a general statement of a fact?
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Which would be the correct usage of tenses in this sentence?

A little bit of context: Peter and Kevin were working on a mission together, and Peter had already planned (He was looking forward) to betray Kevin by the end of the mission. Kevin did not know Peter'...
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Past Perfect with an emphasis on result of an action in the past

As we all know, one of the main ways of using the Present Perfect is describing actions which happened in the past, but are still true or have a very important result (from British Council): We use ...
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Which one should I use, past simple or past perfect?

In November 2001, he ran onto the pitch to play for Inter Milan against Lecce. The fans cheered; he hadn't played almost two years, since he _______ (damage) his knee... He fell down and didn't get up....
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Past simple transforms to past perfect?

I had a leg injury. Past simple. I had had a leg injury. Past perfect. But if I add word "until" past simple transforms to past perfect: I had a leg injury until I was 15. Is this sentence correct? ...
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English / Spanish parallels and confusion

In general, I'm pretty confident and familiar about all typical uses of the past perfect tense. However, I noticed a compelling case while studying Spanish years ago. In Spanish, there's the pretérito ...
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“He hadn't realized there'd been a lightning storm brewing.” Why is past perfect used in this sentence?

I'm seeing past perfect more often in these types of sentences and it doesn't make sense. What makes it different from using simple past here? Edit: Thanks, I got it now.
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Why is the past perfect used here?

Why is the past perfect used in these cases? This is from George Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-Four. Winston had seen O'Brien about twelve times in almost as many years. Years ago he had dreamed about O'...
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it's high time you {past perfect} something

I know that usually it should be "It's high time someone did something." However, what about "the past perfect"? Is it possible to use? If yes, when should it be done and for what effect? "It's ...
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Past Perfect or Past Simple?

I am writing a text on theatre. I would like to put in one sentence two different time references: "The model has recently been popular in the academia" AND "It was theorized about 50 years ago by ...
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Past Perfect Simple vs Past Simple

By the time he had reached the door, he remembered the pink diamond. By the time he reached the door, he remembered the pink diamond. Are both sentences grammatically correct? Thank you!

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