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Synopsis Tenses 2006

Synopsis Tenses 2006

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Published by daniela1956

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Published by: daniela1956 on Jan 31, 2009
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11/21/2012

 
PRESENT SIMPLE TENSE
1)
generic present
: used to describe situations that are regarded as permanently true/likely togo on indefinitely:Snow never 
falls
in the tropical forest.It
takes
one hour to reach Lancaster from Manchester.Leaves
cover
the ground in autumn.
2)
habitual present
: used to describe habits or events that happen on a regular basis – alsocalled ‘iterative’ present since it is used with ‘frequency’ adverbs such as
often, seldom, sometimes, always, never, generally, occasionally
or ‘each’ and ‘every’ adverbial phrases(
each month, every other day
)I always
take
sugar in my coffee.Each summer we
go
to Portugal.Every month Bill
visits
his doctor for a physical.Each year environmentalists
protest
again the slaughtering of baby seals.BUT: We can use either Present Simple or Present Progressive to describe smth that we regularlydo at a particular time. CompareWe usually
watch
the news at 9 (= we start watching at 9)We
are
usually
watching
the news at 9 (= we are already watching at 9)
3)
performative present
: used with verbs that perform the very action they designate :I
appoint
you chairman (appointing smb)I
bet
you 100 $ he won’t apologise (making a bet)I
sentence
you to 25 years of imprisonment. (passing a sentence)I
baptize
this child John (baptizing)Other performative Vs:
accept, acknowledge, advise, apologise, assume, congratulate, deny, guarantee, hope, inform, predict, promise, recommend, suggest, suppose, warn.
4)
reportive present
: used in descriptions accompanying reports of recent or ongoing events:a) 'Midmorning' takes a closer look at the issues at stake in this presidential election. Kerri Miller delves into education. Both candidates have made promises for K-12 students, but how far willthey go? President Bush and Democratic challenger John Kerry have different approaches toeducation policy. Kerry says Bush is not calling for enough spending. Bush says Kerry's can't payfor his plan. (10/06/2004)- sports reportingSmith gets the ball from Baker and scores.-demonstrationsI now chop the onions and stir-fry them with the mushrooms. I add a pinch of salt- instructionsWe make sure that we click save then we go to ‘spelling and grammar' to check our errors, thenwe save again and finally we shut down the computer.
1
 
5) ‘
historic’ or ‘dramatic’ present
: used to give the flavour of immediacy to past events (real or fictitious) or to recount ‘funny’ stories/jokesI get out of the bus and find myself in that bad neighbourhood (real event, colloquial register)When Hamlet meets his father’s ghost, he learns the truth about his uncle Claudius (fictitiousevent)6)
Present Simple with stative Vs
: the use of Present Simple is generally preferred to the use of the Present Continuous with Vs describing
states
:
agree, assume, believe, belong to, contain,cost, disagree, feel, hate, have, hope, know, like, look, love, own, prefer, realise, regret, resemble, smell, taste.
BUT: the Present Progressive can be used with some such Vs if we intend to point out that thesituation is temporary:I
consider
him a moron (this is my opinion) vs.
I’m considering
quitting this job (I’m weighing the pros and cons right now)The kids
love
 playing with your pets (they love it whenever such playing takes place)The kids
are loving
playing with your pets (they are playing with your pets now and are having agood time)Little difference in meaning with Vs describing a temporary state:
ache, hurt, feel, look (=seem)
You don’t look healthy to me/ aren’t looking healthy to me.BUT : Some Vs have a stative meaning that differs from the active meaning. Compare:Jack 
is childish
Jack 
is being childish
.Deirdre
has
 
a two-storey mansion
.Deirdre
is having a shower/dinner
.I
think 
about you as a good friend.
I’m thinking
about getting a new boyfriend.The stew
tastes
delicious.The coo
is tasting
the stew.I
feel
there’s more to it than you confess.
I’m feeling dizzy
.The sack 
weighs
10 lbs.The doctors
are weighing
the newborn baby.It all
depends
on the grant. His family
are depending
on him.Other uses of Present Simple:
-
announcements :The Bon Jovi concert starts at 8.
-
headlines :
 Bush Wins Elections
-
stage directions, film scripts :The Highlander 
grabs
his sword. He
brandishes
it over his enemy’s head.
-
definitions and explanationsTeacher to pupils: You
take
an apple and cut it into two. You
have
two halves. Then you
cut
eachhalf into two. You
have
a quarter.
-
spoken statements introduced by
I gather, I hear, I see, I understand, I reckon,
meant tointroduce newly heard items of news:I hear Bush's IQ is the lowest in the history of American presidents.I gather Britney's second marriage is as much of a fake as her first.
2
 
PRESENT PROGRESSIVE TENSEProgressive forms
: - represent (series of) actions or events at some point(s) between their  beginning and their end,
-
they look at the internal structure of the action/event, how it progresseswithout having been completed
-
indicate that the duration of the (series of) actions/events is limited.Present Progressive indicates:1) an activity
in progress at the very moment of speech
:I’m writing my essay and struggling with the formulation of my arguments.2) a
temporary
 
activity
, regarded as meant to be carried on over a
limited
span of time,I’m cutting on sweets and bread as I’m trying to get into my new mini skirt.3) a
temporary arrangement
(an activity that has been accepted as habitual over a limited spanof time)We’re eating in the kitchen during this frosty winter.1), 2) and 3) indicate
incomplete, temporary actions/events
.Compare:They
spend
a lot of money on clothes (a remark about a more or less permanent state of affairs)They
are spending
a lot of money on clothes (a temporary phenomenon, caused by temporaryneeds such as trying to impress their customers or neighbours)Banks lend money to make a profit (permanent situation)Banks are lending money to encourage new businesses to expand (temporary arrangement)4)
repeated actions/events
unfolding at or around the time of speaking:Why are you jumping up and down?I’m hearing nerve-shattering news these days.5)
changes, developments, tendencies/trends
:Things are getting worse for the aged.The growing number of visitors is damaging the footpaths.I’m beginning to realise how hard it is to be a teacher.6)
emotional overtone
(irritation, annoyance, disapproval) in relation to repeated actions – occasionally accompanied by adverbs such as
always, constantly, continually, forever 
.They are constantly throwing noisy parties until dawn.You are always fidgeting with your hair before exams!They are forever quarreling and waking up the neighbours.
STATIVE VERBS. Look through the list of common stative verbs below and classify theminto the groups suggested.
1. verbs related to the senses2 verbs related to thinking3 verbs related to emotional states4. verbs related to appearance6. others
appear believe belong to contain depend on doubt dislike feel find guesshate have hear imagine involveknow like love mean mind 
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