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  1. #1
    ostap77 is offline Key Member
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    Default past perfect progressive or past progressive

    " She was going out with Bob, before she met John"

    OR

    " She had been going out with, before she met John"

    I guess the second one implies that it lasted for a longer period of time.

    Am I rigth or it's just that they both mean the same thing and the first sentence is less formal than the second one?

  2. #2
    billmcd is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: past perfect progressive or past progressive

    Quote Originally Posted by ostap77 View Post
    " She was going out with Bob, before she met John"

    OR

    " She had been going out with, before she met John"

    I guess the second one implies that it lasted for a longer period of time.

    Am I rigth or it's just that they both mean the same thing and the first sentence is less formal than the second one?
    As the listener I would not infer that there was any difference in length of time. Either is OK.

  3. #3
    ostap77 is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: past perfect progressive or past progressive

    Quote Originally Posted by billmcd View Post
    As the listener I would not infer that there was any difference in length of time. Either is OK.
    Is the first sentence less formal? I would use the first one in everyday speech and the second one when writing a report or talking to a teacher just to show that I have "smarts"( Can I say that in tearms of intelligence?).

    What do you sir think as a native speaker?

  4. #4
    billmcd is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: past perfect progressive or past progressive

    Quote Originally Posted by ostap77 View Post
    Is the first sentence less formal? I would use the first one in everyday speech and the second one when writing a report or talking to a teacher just to show that I have "smarts"( Can I say that in tearms of intelligence?).

    What do you sir think as a native speaker?
    You might (and I might) assume your first example is less formal but I really do not see much, if any, difference between the two. If you think your teacher would be impressed using "had been going out", use it that way. It is grammatically correct.

  5. #5
    ostap77 is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: past perfect progressive or past progressive

    Quote Originally Posted by billmcd View Post
    You might (and I might) assume your first example is less formal but I really do not see much, if any, difference between the two. If you think your teacher would be impressed using "had been going out", use it that way. It is grammatically correct.
    Thank you billmcd!

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