More Verb Tenses

Remember we have seventeen (17) verb tenses in English. This week we are looking at the next group called the perfect tense.

Why is it called perfect? The name comes from a Latin verb  which means ‘to finish.’ In English, the perfect tenses are connected to the idea that the end of the event is most important.

 

Tense Samples When do I use it? Level
Present Perfect Simple Affirmative: He has walked.
Negative: He has not walked.
Question: Has he walked?
  • When you need to put emphasis on the result
  • If the action is still going on
  • If the action stopped recently
  • If the finished action that has an influence on the present
Intermediate
Present Perfect Progressive Affirmative: He has been walking.
Negative: He has not been walking.
Question: Has he been walking
  • When you need to put emphasis on the course or duration (not the result)
  • If the action recently stopped or is still going on
  • If the finished action has influenced the present
Intermediate
Past Perfect Simple Affirmative: He had walked.
Negative: He had not walked.
Question: Had he walked?
  • When action taking place occurs before a certain time in the past
  • When you need to put emphasis only on the fact of the action (not the duration)
Advanced
Past Perfect Progressive A: He had been walking.
N: He had not been walking.
Q: Had he been walking?
  • When the action taking place occurs  before a certain time in the past
  • When you need to put emphasis on the duration or course of an action
Advance

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