Questions tagged [present-perfect-vs-simple-past]

Questions about Present Perfect vs. Simple Past

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"has been" or "was" in a specific case [duplicate]

I published a software on the internet in 2021. So far, 20000 people have downloaded it and tried once then given up (Category A) 10000 people have downloaded it and used more than one time in a ...
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Why is past simple being used in these sentences instead of past perfect? [duplicate]

I'm doing an Anki Deck that consists of "Advanced English Grammar" and I don't understand why in examples below I can't use the form I'm suggesting, but instead have to use the form that is ...
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1 answer
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Can leveraging only tense convey that some action is no longer relevant?

There are two sentences I myself come up with: I haven't checked my inbox for the last few days. I didn't check my inbox for the last few days. Is #2 grammatically correct and idiomatic? Does #2 ...
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Can we use present perfect tense with past time expressions?

Can we use the present perfect tense with past time expressions if we are not telling stories or talking about the past, but if it is important to let know that an action happened at the exact time in ...
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If she beats him he'll claim she <cheated/has cheated>

The Cambridge Grammar of the English Language by H&P (Page 126) has this example of non-deictic past: If she beats him he'll claim she cheated. CaGEL explains this sentence as follows: The time ...
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What is the difference between "Look who has decided to show up" and "Look who decided to show up"? [duplicate]

I always get confused between deciding whether to use present perfect or past simple with expressions like these. So how can I use them correctly?
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How to say that something happened in the past while emphasizing that it is not finished yet?

Let's say that we are in a 2-round tech-competition for which we have already entered the selected list of the first round and waiting to see the results for the 2nd round. Here I want to put the ...
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present perfect, past simple, present perfect continues

I cannot understand these. 1st We didn't win our first four games, but now we are second in the league. (o) We haven't win our first four games, but now we are second in the league. (x) 2nd For ...
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What's the difference between simple past and present prefect? I quite have a doubt with the below statements. Do they convey the same meaning?

Do these two convey the same meaning? And if not, what's the difference? Judy had visited Thailand in 2014 Judy visited Thailand in 2014
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What is the correct way to ask about something that happened some time ago?

When I took one test I had to choose between four options: a) Did you hear that he has been assigned to a new project last week? b) Have you heard that he has been assigned to a new project last week? ...
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2 answers
142 views

Present perfect - indefinite time

I’ve a question about the use of present perfect. I know the present perfect can be used when we want to say that something happened but we don’t know or we don’t care when. For example: I’ve made ...
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Present Perfect and Past Simple together

I just wonder if i have a possibility to mix these tenses in this way. For example, i say about things happened in the past. Can i use present perfect to show result of this sentences in present? I ...
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Is it correct to say "I've been to the World Trade Center"?

I've heard that you can't use the present perfect to talk about something which is not possible anymore. In this case, since the World Trade Center no longer exists and you can't visit there anymore, ...
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What's the difference between has entered and entered?

My uncle has entered many sailing boat races. -In the past but I don't say when. My uncle entered a sailing boat race in 2014 and won. -In the past but I say when. What's the difference between has ...
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3 answers
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Past perfect instead of past simple in fiction

I read web fiction a lot and sometimes I notice sentences that, while being written in past perfect tense, might have been written in past simple tense as well. For example: He’d broken his ...
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3 answers
815 views

How is the present perfect “connected” with the present?

Practical English Usage and the Cambridge Grammar of English say that the present perfect “is connected in some way with the present.” Neither book explains this, and this is why I’m asking for you ...
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1 answer
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Question about present perfect and past simple

I have a question concerning the present perfect and the simple simple. Talking about the story of a family, which of the following statements is correct: My aunt has found a new job in Melbourne so ...
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1 answer
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Past and when should i use what? [duplicate]

English grammar has been confusing me for a long time, so I want to ask some questions about the past and how you use it. I'm more interested in information about British English. When and how do you ...
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1 answer
406 views

What's the difference between "you wasted" and "you've wasted" [duplicate]

I've got a question about this topic. So, about the context. I've just watched a video and in the end, the author said thank you as follows: Thank you for all the time you wasted on this video. I ...
2 votes
1 answer
726 views

Can the present perfect construction be used with the adverb "earlier"?

I would like to know if the present perfect construction can be used in the two following sentences that employ the adverb earlier: As I have said earlier, I don't like her at all. I have been to ...
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2k views

Double present perfect in a compound sentence [closed]

I have two questions concerning the use of the present perfect tense twice in a compound sentence: a. He has accused John of the crime and provided evidence for it. b. He has accused John of ...
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803 views

Might be OR Might have been [closed]

The sentence: Had the doctor been more careful, my cousin might still have been alive. In this construction, the two fragments of the sentence are more parallel with their use of been. Had he ...
3 votes
1 answer
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I have gone shopping or I went shopping

It says that we use present perfect for actions in the past that have a result now. No matter how much I try to figure out this, sometimes it is pretty hard. I have also read the followings as well, ...
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1 answer
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Simple past of present perfect?

I wonder which one is correct: David has made a decision to quit his job in spite of good salary. David made a decision to quit his job in spite of good salary. I think that 1 is correct, ...
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1 answer
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Simple Past vs. Present Perfect for recently completed actions [duplicate]

In the following dialogue: A: Look! I have bought a new hat. B: Nice! Where did you buy it? or C. Nice! Where have you bought it? Which is correct, b or c? Or both?
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past simple vs present perfect for dead people

Which tense to use when mentioning someone who is dead, but the institution or country that he founded still exists, as in the sentences below: Atatürk has founded Turkey. Atatürk founded ...
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English confuses me sometimes [duplicate]

I posted something online and someone said it was wrong so... I said : I just changed my phone number. That person said that i should have said : I have just changed my phone number. Which one was ...
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"Have helped" or "helped"? [duplicate]

you have helped me (Present Perfect) you helped me (Past Simple) Which one is correct and why?
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"I bought (or) have bought all their records after the concert" [duplicate]

I have bought all their records after the concert. I bought all their records after the concert. Which one is correct? I understand when we use the present perfect and when the past simple, I just ...
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6 votes
2 answers
1k views

Present Perfect vs. Simple Past: Are the solutions supplied by an English website correct?

I am a native English speaker who has just begun to tutor ESL students. I have found some exercise sheets on the internet and I disagree with some of the answers, I would appreciate some other ...
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1 answer
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Should the sentence be in the present perfect or simple past with "last week"? [closed]

When I was studying English Grammar, I was asked to spot the error I've submitted my documents last week. Vs. I submitted my documents last week. What is wrong/the difference between both ...
4 votes
3 answers
10k views

What's the difference between “(Had he not made / If he didn't make) a good impression, he wouldn't be a star today”?

How should I complete this sentence? (Only with the options given) He wouldn't be the star he is today ________ a good impression in his early life A. Had he not made B. If he didn't make So, B is ...
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1 answer
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Present perfect or simple past with "for the last twenty minutes"?

My teacher give me a question You know she (stand)______ looking at that picture for the last twenty minutes. and my job is complete this sentence with any verb tense provided it makes sense. My ...
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Are “Why did you do that” and “Why have you done that” interchangeable?

As I know, both Simple Past and Present Perfect can be used for an action that happened in the past. However, S.Past is used for an action which has a definite period of time whereas P.Perfect is used ...
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Past simple and present perfect: "They didn't" vs "They haven't"

Please explain what differences are implied by using two different negative forms Two years ago today, the guns were supposed to fall silent. They didn't. Two years ago, Russian fighters ...
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"Scarcely did/had she put down the phone when it rang again"

Which is correct: Scarcely did she put down the phone when it rang again. Scarcely had she put down the phone when it rang again. My own take is that both are correct, but that "had she" ...
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1 answer
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Simple Past vs Present Perfect to express experience in the past [closed]

At least in American English it is common to say Did you watch that movie? When I would expect people to say Have you watched that movie? The later sounds correct to me because it's the ...
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"Have you washed it" vs "Did you wash it"? [duplicate]

What's the difference between these two questions? Speaker A: Your car looks very clean. Have you washed it? Did you wash it?
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3 answers
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“I burned the toast” vs. “I've burned the toast”

I have a question about a sentence I read in the comic strip Garfield. Garfield's owner, Jon, brings him a burnt piece of toast saying, I burned the toast. Well, once there's no time specified ...
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747 views

Is using "since" and "ago" with the present perfect correct? [duplicate]

I just found this in a Cambridge Grammar Book and I am so confused. When I learnt English in school, the teacher said I cannot put Since and Ago together in present perfect sentence. However, in this ...
1 vote
3 answers
4k views

In the past year [duplicate]

I went to Australia last year. I have gone to Australia in the past year. I know it is perfectly alright to use past simple for the first sentence. But why do you use present perfect "have gone" ...
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2 answers
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I've just bought vs. I just bought vs. I bought [duplicate]

I bought an English grammar book 3 weeks ago. Is it correct to use any of the following sentences interchangeably to tell my friend that I bought the book, or is there a difference in meaning between ...
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4 answers
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Why is the Present Perfect used in: “I've returned every spring for the last four years”?

I have read this text about a man who has spent a terrible holiday (in the island of Thassos) due to the disorganisation of the travel company. In fact the text consists in the complaint letter that ...
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1 answer
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“Have you seen...” or “Did you see...?”

In the US, when people work together, they may look for a colleague or any person to say something or for any other reason, asking colleagues or other people this type of question: Have you ...
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Why is the present perfect used for a past action? [duplicate]

I know I've been asking a lot of questions lately about tenses. But please bear with me here. NASA scientists have decided to delay the space shuttle's launch in order to determine whether recently ...
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2 answers
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What's the difference between "... you have completed the task" and "... you completed the task"? [closed]

Is there any difference in the meaning of the following sentences? Or do they mean the exact same thing? By doing both, you have completed the task. By doing both, you completed the task.
4 votes
2 answers
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What’s the difference: "I didn’t do anything" vs "I haven’t done anything"

Imagine the following scenario: I looked at a girl and gave her a smile. My friend next to me has put a serious look on his face and is staring at me. I turn to my friend and figured that I'd say one ...
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4 answers
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Does the present perfect imply an action finished in the past? [duplicate]

reading passage: Ten Taiwanese film directors, producers and screenwriters have been invited to participate in a two-day workshop in Paris next week, to seek co-production opportunities with their ...
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Use didn't leave yet, or haven't left yet? Can we use ''YET'' in past tense or not? [closed]

My knowledge of English grammar is very basic. I learned English mostly from movies and a lot of times I choose a specific way to say something in English based on intuition or the feeling that it ...
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Usage of "since" and "for" in the present perfect and simple past tense [duplicate]

Can we use since and for with past tense? If we can use them, then what is difference between: I have learnt English for 3 months I learnt English for 3 months
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