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Questions tagged [tenses]

A set of forms taken by a verb to indicate the time and/or completeness and continuance of the action in relation to the time of the utterance.

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Is this present continuous or present simple? “There are children playing on the street.”

“There are children playing on the street.” Tense-wise, how would you categorize this? Should this be accepted as an example for the present continuous tense? My first instinct was no, but the ...
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Continuous(Progressive) module in Old English

I'm curious as to the origins of the Continuous(progressive) module. Whenever I meet texts emulating old speech, like in: video game RPGs, books like the Saxon Chronicles, Hollywood movies about the ...
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i studied or was studying

Now I am 60years old and I want to say that sometime in the past i was at Oxford university 5 years for example but without a specific time in the past,30 or 40years ago etc. 1) "i have studied at ...
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Has been -ed / Has become -ed

I'm a translator and I'm in currently in an argument with the reviewer regarding whether it has to be has been/has become that needs to be used in the blank in the following sentence. Your XX skill ...
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Query is past perfect and past perfect continuous

With regards to the word 'wait': I had been waiting for 2 hours and I was angry. I was waiting for 2 hours when the cab arrived. Are the above sentences correct? In a Youtube video there was ...
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Question with tense

Which one of the following is correct, if the program is still available: The Court determined that the program is considered government speech. or The Court determined that the program was ...
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Why can't the word “can” be used in future tense (will can)?

I'm curious about why the English word can cannot be used in future tense (e.g. will can). An example unrelated to English is French term je pourrai, but that's exactly what I mean. Compare German ...
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Usage of tense in sentences with “in case” [closed]

"I will give you a map in case you get lost." "I will give you a map in case you will be getting lost." Which use of the tenses of the bold portions of the above two sentences is correct?
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Why do 'vomit/limit' use single 't' while emit/omit use double 't'? A study case of relations between etymology and verb inflections

One comment gave me a great link for musing the answer: "Focussed" or "focused"? Rules for doubling the last consonant when adding -ed However, my question is the rule in doubling ...
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2answers
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What is the Holocaust, or what was the Holocaust?

I am writing a piece of history coursework about the Holocaust. One of the section titles is What is the Holocaust, or What was the Holocaust? Could somebody please confirm which of these two is ...
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What is the difference between “could they have had” and “would they have”? [closed]

1.How many days of vacation could they have had? 2.How many days would they have on vacation? if any... thanks:)
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I need help conjugating ”Have to go” at some tenses!

Present Perfect Simple: I have had to go. Present Perfect Continuous: I have had to be going. Past Perfect Simple: I had had to go. Past Perfect Continuous: I had had to be going. Are these correct? ...
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usage of future perfect

If I am not mistaken one of the keywords for this tense is "by". e.g By august I will have done my work. But lately, I have found this example: In August Gordon will have been at this company for 25 ...
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Which tense to use for writing report about processing data?

I did some work for which I have to write a report. The work was in past. But the data , as a result of work, was generated in past but it is still present and is of significance in both the present ...
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23 views

“Agree to” vs “Have agreed to”

When I read a BBC news article, I found a question about the reason why they use "have agreed to" instead of "agreed to". See the following sentence. bbc.com, "Koreas to remove guns and guard posts ...
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1answer
24 views

Present Perfect vs. Present Perfect Progressive [duplicate]

I am taking a Mooc on grammar and punctuation on Coursera, and have been asked a question during a lecture: Do these two sentences have similar meaning or different meaning? Julie has studied ...
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2answers
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can we use a present tense before “since”?

Is it grammatically correct to say "it is 2 months since we've been dating"? Because I heard with "since" we must use a perfect or/and a past tense, like "it's been 2 months since we've been dating".
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Mixed tenses in a sentence : had to + simple past

So a story that is told primarily in simple past has the following sentence: He had to shake him out of his trance and pointed at the battle. Should 'pointed' follow the same tense as 'shake' and ...
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why are they selecting our products or why do they select our products. Which one?

This one from Steve Jobs video, 00:42. He use "why are they selecting our products", could I use " why do they select our products"? what are the differences? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=...
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1answer
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I see vs. I can see [the usage of the instantaneous Present Simple)

From Fly High 4 by Jeanne Perrette & Charlotte Covill (suspiciously French-sounding names...) by Pearson Longman, unit 13, page 40, "They went through town": "I can see Claudia and Magnus," ...
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1answer
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Had never had/never had - past perfect vs simple past

This would probably be considered a duplicate, but I looked at the other similar questions and still can't figure out what to do in this instance. Would simple past or past perfect be better here? ...
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1answer
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What tense should I use, present or past?

I was wondering if I am describing my feelings towards an event happened in the past in my diary, should I use past or present tense? " I think this is an exciting activity." OR " I think this was an ...
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What tense is this? “to be + to verb”

For example, "If we are to achieve our objectives..." or "What is to be done?" What tense is this? In my understanding, we're talking about the future, but it's a weird sort of "tense" I haven't ...
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Is there any link of plural with Present Tense?

Why it is wrong in some sentence to use a singular with plural and why it is true in some sentences when we use singular with singular? I have done exercise in our class about plural link with present ...
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1answer
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A Tense Question ;) Pun intended

Medical professionals are worried that too many general practitioners are overprescribing them, which will cause bacteria to build up a resistance. Or Medical professionals are worried that ...
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1answer
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Usage of Future tense will and to be + ing-form

Could anyone please explain the usage of the future tense 'will' and 'to be +ing-form'? Is it correct to say 'I will clean the kitchen right now.' (I am about to do something in the very near future) ...
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previously was/had been

So I asked a question that I knew I had asked a long time ago and actually made me think... "Am I the only one whose program went back to how it previously was or not?" The aforementioned quotation ...
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2answers
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(verb)ing and (verb)ing with “show”

This is easiest to explain with examples: Examples 1a: Shouting and cursing shows that you are rude. 1b: Shouting and cursing show that you are rude. 2a: Hitting the target and splitting the arrow ...
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Meaning of present tense

Two questions here. 1) A (high quality and honest) citizen journalist wrote a report on JAN 30, "Yesterday Police announced they were investigating the death as a suicide. The wife of the victim is ...
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1answer
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She looks like someone I wouldn't want to be friends with. Vs She looks like someone I won't be friends with

What's the difference between these two sentences. She looks like someone I wouldn't want to be friends with. 2.She looks like someone I won't be friends with.
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Usage of v/3 form of verbs? [duplicate]

Frequently, I come across sentences which have v/3 form of verbs- not in present perfect sentences- in simple sentences. For example: I am grown weak, or it should be I have grown weak Which one is ...
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1answer
48 views

I will see you when I WAS at home?

Is it correct to say "I will see you when I was at home"? Or "I will see you when I am at home"? I am a little confused about the thing will happen in the future. Thanks!
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1answer
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Past or present tense in the clause of an -ing structure?

I have a question that, as the title suggests, relates to tense agreement between an -ing phrase and its subordinate clause. I have seen other similar questions, such as present/past tense in a ...
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1answer
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Can you use future tense and switch to present in the same sentence?

As in: Occasionally, he will spontaneously generate the sentences on his own and sometimes uses, "May I have."
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2answers
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Proper tense for 'to be' in non-if conditional clauses [closed]

You will receive your money back under the condition that the product (is / be / will be / ?) returned in the original packaging. This method removes the constraint that the batteries (are / be / ...
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1answer
34 views

Can we use verbs of perception in the present continuous? [duplicate]

Title says it all. Kindly inform what other verbs can't be used with present continuous.
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1answer
35 views

Tense form after the word did

I read this explanation about did from http://www.learnersdictionary.com/qa/did-main-verb-base-form-or-past-tense-form . Does that mean all the verb after did in a question will remain as it is? ...
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2answers
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Present tense in the narrative past tense

I've read a number of questions here on SE English as well as from Google searches, however I'm still unclear on something. Consider the following: Alice walked carefully along the uneven lawn, ...
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“It expires…” vs “It would expire by 31 Oct”

Your collected Amazon Pay offer for Swiggy would expire by 31-Oct-2018. Please help me understand why 'would' is used in the place of 'will'. Also, can we not use the simple present here that ...
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1answer
54 views

Difference between “had been …-ing” and “was/were …-ing”?

I couldn't understand the difference between these sentences: َ1.We were watching TV when he arrived. 2.We had been watching TV when he arrived. OR 1.I was listening music when you called....
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Present perfect with a past temporal expression

I know the present perfect tense may not be used with temporal expressions which define a timeframe which does not include the present. For example: WRONG: I've visited him on Monday. However, when ...
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Grammar: “I'll try AND help them”

There are tens of questions here on EL&U about the grammaticality of the try and do something construction and its merits compared with the unremarkable try to do something collocation. However, ...
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1answer
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Are these two form in the past ? Verb-ed = Did + Verb -> ( Past Tense )

I just took the SAT and there was one question I wasn't sure. What's difference between verb-ed and did+verb? For example, I did become = I became ? Past Tense?
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1answer
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Future prefect and Future perfect continuous tense [closed]

Can anyone please clarify/ explain when to use these two grammar tenses? Especially the future perfect continuous. It is quite confusing. Thanks.
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Present perfect or past perfect in “The critique, provided to me this weekend by a prominent diplomat who has lived in Washington a long time”

Is the usage of the Present Perfect Tense, "has lived", correct in the sentence below? Should it be the Past Perfect tense instead? “The critique, provided to me this weekend by a prominent ...
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1answer
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What's the right tense for these sentences?

I have finished writing a somewhat important document and had it proofread through an online service. Although I am no expert, the editor made a few changes I don't understand. Would you please tell ...
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1answer
115 views

Is this use of “made” past tense or subjunctive tense?

I'm a senior Computer Engineering student, and I'm taking a required Ethics course this semester. We just wrote our first paper, and each of us had to grade the paper of another student in the class. ...
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2answers
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Is the use of the tense correct? [closed]

I am not sure about the tenses in the following sentences. Is it the right choice? 1) I am originally from XYZ, studied XYZ in XYZ and will stay in XYZ until the end of March 2020. ( maybe 'have ...
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Use of plural form of auxiliary verb for singular subject

This is an excerpt from an article published on the Nautilus website: ...We in the 21st century would be shocked if an educated adult were unable to identify the continents on a world map, yet we ...
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What tense to use when referencing “unknown past” from the future?

In class, we conducted an experiment where we filled dialysis tubing with sucrose solutions of unknown concentrations, then placed them in distilled water to let osmosis take place. In my analysis of ...