Questions tagged [perfect-aspect]

For questions about the perfect, a construction generally formed in English with a form of "have" followed by a past participle. The English perfect may be classified either as a grammatical "aspect" or "tense".

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2
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2answers
44k views

Is this grammatically correct: “It has happened for a while now.” [closed]

If not, why? I think it sounds awkward but I cannot be sure it's incorrect.
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1answer
838 views

is hidden or has hiidden [closed]

What is appropriate to use he is hidden or he has hidden ? It is bit confusing sometimes ,where to use the perfect form and where to simple
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6answers
26k views

Present Perfect with the word “ago”?

First, I check that my native language is not English, and the problem described below met on one of the exams. With this sentence: "The most important news is that my parents [...] a new ...
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2answers
7k views

Can I use the present perfect tense with a specific time expression? [closed]

Is it grammatical to combine the present perfect tense with time? For example, I've seen that movie two days ago. I've completed the 12-step program last summer. The deadline was two days ...
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1answer
794 views

Responsibility, the Gerund, and the Perfect Aspect

In the process of answering this question on ELL, I hit upon something I can't explain. The sentence in question is: Who is responsible for leaving the window open? I think anyone hearing that ...
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2answers
6k views

“He denied having killed him” vs “He denied he had killed him”

I'm trying to understand the perfect aspect of the verbs and I am not sure whether both are correct: He denied having killed him He denied he had killed him. If not, what is the problem? ...
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1answer
9k views

‘He decided’ vs. ‘He had decided’

He decided that I could have the apartment before he looked at my credit report. I found that sentence in an exercise, and I wonder why it isn't: He had decided that I could have the apartment ...
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4answers
165 views

Passive or Past perfect?

a) The train was left by then. Or b) The train had left by then. Could you tell me which alternative is correct?
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5answers
5k views

past simple vs past perfect

My question might seem to be stupid enough, it's basic grammar, I believe; however, I'm at my wits' end. Should we use Past perfect or Past Simple in the following sentence: He promised/ had ...
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3answers
189 views

What does “It can't have been her you saw yesterday: she is abroad.” become in indirect reported speech?

What does the sentence: It can't have been her you saw yesterday: she is abroad. become in indirect reported speech? He told me it… can't have been (?) couldn't have been (?) … her I had seen ...
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1answer
290 views

For a past situation: simple infinitive or perfect infinitive after “ought to”?

In Michael Vince's New First Certificate Language Practice, page 92, exercise 2, sentence number 10, you are given the sentence: "I thought that you would know better!" which has to be re-written ...
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1answer
547 views

Present Perfect for the past? [duplicate]

I've come across the - more or less - following sentence in a book (American publisher): "They have done it in the past" I've always thought that "PAST" and "PRESENT PERFECT" can't go together. The ...
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1answer
1k views

“…mustn't have done..”: can it mean reproach for a past action or prohibition of a future action?

Can "You mustn't have done that" have a similar meaning to "You shouldn't have done that" / "You were not supposed to do it (but you did)"? (not logical probability but obligation) Since we have the ...
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1answer
4k views

“meeting called to order” vs “meeting call to order”

Which do you think is more appropriate, "Meeting call to order" or "Meeting called to order" if it's used in a printed meeting program? As for now, the program looks like this: 13:45 [Doors open] 14:...
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3answers
19k views

Adverbs + Present Perfect

Here's my problem: I've been confused about the placement of adverbs in present/past perfect phrases. For example, which sentence would sound better: "We had been slowly drifting down the river ...
2
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1answer
11k views

“I would like to have come” vs “I would have liked to come”

I wonder why it is correct to say: I would like to have come but I was not informed. Wouldn't it be better to say: I would have liked to come? (I found many examples on Google). Is there a ...
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1answer
203 views

PrP Continuous vs. PrP | Nuance?

I have a question regarding the usage of the Present Perfect and the Present Perfect Continuous. So first, here's the context: I was playing an online game with a couple friends and in this game you ...
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3answers
2k views

Until you have confirmed + past or present?

Which one of these sentences is correct? The contract will not be signed until you have checked the manuscript and confirmed that everything is ok. The contract will not be signed until you ...
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1answer
665 views

[pronoun]'ve for possessives [duplicate]

My sister just wrote me, "I've a meeting a noon." The contraction "I've" stuck out. I've always thought the contraction was limited to the perfect tense, and do not recognize it as an indicator of ...
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1answer
3k views

“I have been reading your letter with pleasure”? [closed]

Is this a correct choice of tense? If yes, what conditions would justify the use of Present Perfect Continuous? It seems much more natural to say I have read your letter. (I have recently ...
2
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2answers
36k views

What is the difference between has gone and went in this context? [duplicate]

A: Is Mr. Bob at home? B: Sorry, he isn't at home. He___to Hong Kong for vacation? A. went B. has gone C. is going Which one is correct answer? and why it is not the other ones?
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1answer
25k views

What does “Compound Tense” mean? [closed]

I have problems with learning about "Compound Tenses". Please help me.
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7answers
185k views

“could have” vs. “could have been”

Can somebody explain when to use could have and could have been and under what circumstances? Please explain with an example. Is it something to do with the active (could have) and the passive ...
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2answers
159 views

doubt about the past perfect, continuous,

I'm writing the profile section of my resumé/CV. I'm hesitating about the proper verb form: During my work experience I have applied engineering methods to solve problems. I have been ...
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1answer
5k views

I only watched or I have only watched [duplicate]

If someone ask me "Do you like Indian movie?" Which tenses would fit the answer to the question ? "yes I do. But I watched only some of them" "yes I do. But I have wathed only some of them" "yes I ...
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1answer
505 views

I was able to re-introduce the process that had not been done anymore. Past perfect?

I am not sure whether or not there should be past simple or past perfect: I was able to re-introduce the procedure that had not been being followed anymore. I was able to re-introduce the ...
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4answers
3k views

Perfect vs Perfect Continuous

I saw this sentence the other day and it struck me as awkward. I went online and saw many instances of the present perfect being used in such manner. She has worked here since 1995 Shouldn't this ...
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1answer
455 views

Future perfect or simple in this context

In a movie I saw, a young boy told to an old man that he would be gone for a long time when something happens. I'm trying to figure out what the boy actually said and what tense should have been used (...
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2answers
4k views

“Have been occupied” VS. “have been being occupied”

I have a question about the present perfect. Here's a sample dialogue. Mary: Hey, John...Are you listening? Hello?? John: Oh hey Mary...I've been occupied with this dreadful thought. Mary:...
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2answers
497 views

Present Perfect or Past Simple to express duration in the past?

Have you ever danced? This is kind of a usual question. What if I want to ask someone about his experience and find out how long it lasted. Can I say Have you ever danced for 5 hours? (and ...
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2answers
959 views

Should “If I ever had a philosophy” be in the past perfect?

Excerpted from The Hills of Triumph: If I ever had a philosophy with which to govern my social life, even long after learning that social is often at the detriment of personal, it would have been ...
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1answer
5k views

perfect infinitives with main verbs

My question is about usage of perfect infinitives with main verbs e.g. I would like to have lived in the 13th century. She was going to have worked in her mother's business, but decided ...
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2answers
19k views

'have been' vs. 'went' with time words

Sometimes I see the following in ESL learners' writing: I have been to America two years ago. Am I correct in saying that it should be: I have been to America. I went to America two years ...
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2answers
1k views

Simple Past and Present Perfect [closed]

could you possibly enlighten me about any differences between 2 sentences below: (a) I went to Warsaw this year. (b) I have been to Warsaw this year. Thank you very much in advance!
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2answers
1k views

Usage of 'future perfect' versus 'future simple'

I have a question about the usage of the future perfect thingy: I know that it is used to talk about a completed action before a time in future, but is it wrong to use just plain future simple in this ...
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1answer
2k views

Should “How long were you at work?” have a simple or a compound tense?

I would like to know, if the following sentence can ever be correct in any context? How long were you at work? Or it must be: How long had you been at work? For example: How long were you ...
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2answers
4k views

Dare + have done

Here is an example from an old book. I know it’s old but it can’t be simply discarded, I hope. "I never dare have spoken — never dare have told you that my love for you was killing me" So, I ...
0
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1answer
967 views

Can we use past perfect progressive in the context where present tense is predominantly used?

As I understand, past perfect is used to express an action that had happened before something else in the past. But in the paragraph I came across, there appeared past perfect progressive in the ...
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1answer
2k views

Present perfect continuous

Are the answers I chose correct. My choices are in bold. I have been pumping/I have pumped up three tyres. Would you like to do the forth? I have been greasing/I have greased my car. That's why my ...
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3answers
349 views

Simple past sounds better but past perfect seems more accurate

I think it's grammatically more accurate to say,"The market was closed after a virus had been found." However, it sounds "better" to say,"The market was closed after a virus was found." Grammatically, ...
2
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1answer
924 views

Present perfect continuous

How are we to understand whether present perfect progressive implies that the action is still in progress, versus implying it has stopped just now or recently? In simple sentences like these two, •...
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1answer
332 views

A grammar rule (Present perfect)

Is this rule correct? when 'for' and 'since' are used in a sentence(in present perfect tense) to show duration of an action they imply that the action is still in progress. Without the 'for', the ...
0
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1answer
860 views

Using Past Perfect after an event

While reading a book, I came across some sentences that used past-perfect "after" an event had taken place. Actually, I've seen many books do this, so this must be the grammatically correct way, but I'...
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2answers
283 views

Can I use the 3rd conditional that way? [closed]

Is the sentence given below grammatically correct? Had you born two days later and it would have been difficult to celebrate your birthdays. Is it the only option to use the third conditional to ...
4
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2answers
4k views

Why present perfect in “When the night has come”?

In the song “Stand by Me”, we see a sentence like “when the night has come.” I was taught that in a when clause, we use the past tense, yet the present perfect has been used in the sentence cited ...
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2answers
448 views

Present and past perfect dilemma

This sentence is giving me trouble: For several days I (have/had) not had the chance to see her until a few hours ago. I think had is correct because the time reference is a few hours ago, which ...
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1answer
783 views

Present perfect or simple past [duplicate]

Why is it better to use simple past than present perfect in the first six sentences? 1.Did you win the game of chess? 2.Did you see Ann? 3.Did you call Jane? 4.When did you join the company? 5.Did ...
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1answer
2k views

“Would remain” vs. “would have remained”

What's the difference in meaning between the following two sentences? He thought that he would remain young. He thought that he would have remained young.
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5answers
43k views

Difference in meaning: “would have had to be” vs “would have had to have been”

Being a non native speaker, I cannot spot the difference here: He would have had to have been there. He would have had to be there. The only thing that comes to my mind is that in the first case, ...
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4answers
3k views

Can the Future Perfect be used in a main clause of a conditional sentence that has a stative/non-action verb in the if-clause?

A student asked me this question today about a sentence like: (1) If Canada's population is 40 million, the Canadian economy will have been more dynamic. I was asked if it corresponded, in a future ...