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PAST TENSE SIMPLE
1) for REGULAR VERBS: V + - ed arrive + ed = arrived He arrived ten minutes ago 2) for IRREGULAR VERBS: the 2nd form sing, sang, sung She sang a beautiful song yesterday
[d] - after voiced consonants: /b/g/l/m/n/v/z/ƺ/dƺ/ rubbed, filled, managed - after vowels: played, tried - after voiceless consonants: /f/k/p/t/s/ ʃ/tʃ/ passed, watched, splashed
1) final –e deletion phone + ed = phoned 2) doubling of final consonant stop + ed = stopped 3) y + ed i+ ed cry + ed cried
INTERROGATIVE I lied to you Did I lie to you? You met him Did you meet him? He danced al night Did he dance all night? We read the book Did we read the book? They left Did they leave? She was disappointed Was she disappointed? Usual mistake: *Did you met him? *Did he wrote the letter? .
.NEGATIVE DID + NOT (except be and modal verbs) I did not lie to you / I didn’t lie to you She was not /wasn’t disappointed.
BASIC MEANIGS There are two features of meaning combined in the simple past: 1) The event/state happened in the past and there is a gap between its completion and ST 2) The speaker/writer must have in mind a definite time at which the event/state took place .
She started school last year .BASIC MEANINGS Examples I stayed in Africa for several months I am no longer in Africa .you cannot utter this sentence if you still stay in Africa.definite time .
Adverbs used with past tense only yesterday last week/month/year (five years) ago .
ATTENTION! I haven’t read a book in the last five years ST Axis of present in the last five years (with present perfect) I didn’t read a single book last year Axis of past last year (with past tense) .
DON’T FORGET 1 ) Present perfect is on the Axis of Present 2)Past tense is on the Axis of Past have stayed RT = ST stayed RT ← ST .
USES A. Sam phoned a moment ago. I lived in France for 5 years ( I no longer live in France) I was ill for two weeks last month . With reference to PAST TIME 1) A unique event done/finished at a definite moment in the past or a state finished in a period of time wholly past Julius Cesar invaded Britain in 55 BC.
USES A. With reference to PAST TIME The RT can be a) given by adverbs such as yesterday (a month) ago the other day last (year) in 1989 .
” Dickens wrote novels .” Ann: Bill: Ann “I’ve been in Greece.USES A. With reference to PAST TIME b) inferred from the context Ann: “This time last year I was in Vienna” Bill: “How curious. I was there too.” “How did you like it?” “It was glorious.
this plural triggers a habitual interpretation . With reference to PAST TIME 2) To express a past habitual action Peter got up at noon every day during his childhood Fido chased cars I never drank alcohol in high school .the interval of time is inferred from the context .USES A.
USES A.used to: with both actions and states I used to play chess in the primary school Mary used to like cowboy films Lithuania used to be part of the Soviet Union . With reference to PAST TIME used to / would can be used to express a past habitual action .
would: used only with action verbs (to express what was typical of a person) . With reference to PAST TIME .less used nowadays Every week he would buy his mother a bunch of flowers (It was typical of him to …) .USES A.
USES A. by the time. then I thought…) . before. The sequence of the past events is marked by: a) conjunctions such as: after. as soon as. . then … I thought of him very much after I went to bed (first I went to bed. With reference to PAST TIME 3) with a past perfect value (to express an action which happened before a past RT).
With reference to PAST TIME b) the order of events is known from our general knowledge of the world or the events come straight one after the other He opened the window and the bird flew out He knocked and entered Tim got up when the phone rang .USES A.
USES A. With reference to PAST TIME When is ambiguous I arrived when they left I arrived when they had left .
With reference to PAST TIME 4) when we ask about the time of the past action (the time of the action can be specified) When did you punch him? What time did she wake up? How long ago did they meet? .USES A.
Did the phone ring? .USES A. With reference to PAST TIME 5) in certain contexts/situations to express an action that happened a very short time before ST .without a time reference Did you lock the front door? (the door about which we – speaker and hearer know that it is locked at bedtime) Mummy! Jimmy punched me in the stomach.
the use of past tense can be explained by the fact that the state no longer obtains at ST.USES A. With reference to PAST TIME 6) in comparative clauses She is not so active as she was . it is equivalent to used to She is not so active as she used to be .
THE REPRESENTATION OF THE BASIC MEANINGS OF PAST SIMPLE WITH REFERENCE TO PAST TIME Axis of present ST = now Axis of past ST = then .
I hoped you would give me a hand with the luggage. With reference to PRESENT TIME • In more polite inquiries/questions “Did you / Do you want to see me?” “ Yes. I thought I might come to see you later this evening.” I wondered / wonder / was wondering if you’d look after my dog while I go shopping. .B.
makes the request more indirect .is more polite than the present tense (which is brusque. With reference to PRESENT TIME – The present RT is given by the context – The past tense in such a context: .avoids a confrontation of wills . impolite I wonder if you’d look …) .B.
With reference to FUTURE TIME • In adverbial clauses of time to refer to a future event from a past point of view He promised he would tell me the truth [when he knew it] .C.
PAST TENSE PROGRESSIVE / CONTINUOUS .
FORM S + BE (WAS/WERE) + V-ing I was working You were dreaming He was thinking … .
USES 1) to express a past action which was in progress with respect to a past RT We were travelling at 3 a.m. . Peter was working at his essay last night. yesterday. I was living abroad in 1978.
event She was painting when the door bell rang We were sleeping when he suddenly started crying . more important.USES 2) to express a past background action for another.
USES 3) To express past parallel actions in progress He was dancing while I was working .
Our burglar alarm was forever going off for no reason .USES 4) to express the speaker’s irritation for an event which happened too often in the past She was always complaining about something.
I was travelling by bus that week.USES 5) to express past temporary situations My car was off the road. 6) to express future arrangement from a past point of view I was meeting her the next day .
. never etc. I always trusted old people when I was young.NOTES 1 1) Adverbs such as always. I have always trusted people. ever. often. can be used with different tenses depending on the span of time they refer to I always trust old people.
NOTES 1 I never travel by plane. I never travelled by plane when I was young I have never travelled by plane. .
NOTES 2 2) The speaker uses past tense whenever he counts on the hearer’s assumption that he (the speaker) has a specific time in mind for the event .
NOTES 2 That the time of the event is definite can be recoverable (by the hearer) from: 1) The communicative situation/context 2) The larger context of “general knowledge” 3) What was said earlier in the sentence / text 4) What comes later on in the same sentence or text .
or objects which are their topics . places.NOTES 2 The use of simple past in historical or biographical statements (without time adverbials) can be explained by using the information provided by the specific people (names).
NOTES 2 Byron died in Greece I have a friend who was at school with Kissinger This picture was painted by the owner’s grandfather Rome was built in a day .
the picture must have been painted at some time or another. he died in Greece”.NOTES 2 Its is general knowledge that Byron is a historical personage – he must have died at some time or another. It is as if the speaker had said: “We all know that Byron died at some time or another. well. The other events presuppose the same: they must have taken place at some (definite) time in the past: spending a particular period at school. when he died. all the cities – including Rome – must have been built at some time or another) .
NOTES 3 3) past tense signifies that the event is “far” from the speech time (present signifies that the event is “near” ST) – both have a deictic function .
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