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Thread: Verb tenses

  1. #1
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    Question Verb tenses

    Dear teachers,

    I have just joined this forum and really hope you can help me.

    This is a short passage taken from a long description about Rome and Roman history:

    In the II century B.C. the Roman Forum develops further with the construction of four basilicas. A century later, the Tabularium will be added. [...] In the X century the area begins transforming: the Emperor builds...

    Is the present tense allowed in this kind of sentences or is the use of past tense more correct (or the only correct tense) in British English?

    Thank you in advance,
    Tinarima

  2. #2
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    engee30 is offline Key Member
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    Re: Verb tenses

    Quote Originally Posted by tinarima View Post
    Dear teachers,

    I have just joined this forum and really hope you can help me.

    This is a short passage taken from a long description about Rome and Roman history:

    In the II century B.C. the Roman Forum develops further with the construction of four basilicas. A century later, the Tabularium will be added. [...] In the X century the area begins transforming: the Emperor builds...

    Is the present tense allowed in this kind of sentences or is the use of past tense more correct (or the only correct tense) in British English?

    Thank you in advance,
    Tinarima
    The simple present tense used in that excerpt is called the historic present, which is obviuosly the same in form. Such use gives the author the oportunity to express his ideas to the reader in a more realistic and vivid way.
    Of course the author could have used the simple past tense instead.

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