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  1. #1
    Tan Elaine is offline Key Member
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    He need / needed not go to school yesterday

    He need / needed not go to school yesterday.

    Can either verb be used in the above sentence?

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    philo2009 is offline Key Member
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    Re: He need / needed not go to school yesterday

    Quote Originally Posted by Tan Elaine View Post
    He need / needed not go to school yesterday.

    Can either verb be used in the above sentence?

    Thanks.
    Not in contemporary usage: the modal use of 'need' is restricted to its present tense-form.

    To refer to the past, BrE employs the perfective construction [need not have + Ved] where the event in question actually occurred, or [did not need to V] where it did not. (AmE tends to employ the latter with either meaning.)

  3. #3
    Tan Elaine is offline Key Member
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    Re: He need / needed not go to school yesterday

    Quote Originally Posted by philo2009 View Post
    Not in contemporary usage: the modal use of 'need' is restricted to its present tense-form.
    Thanks, Philo

    To refer to the past, BrE employs the perfective construction [need not have + Ved] where the event in question actually occurred, or [did not need to V] where it did not. (AmE tends to employ the latter with either meaning.)
    What is Ved? Could you or someone else elaborate on the reply? I cannot quite understand the reply.

  4. #4
    emsr2d2's Avatar
    emsr2d2 is offline Moderator
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    Re: He need / needed not go to school yesterday

    Quote Originally Posted by Tan Elaine View Post
    What is Ved? Could you or someone else elaborate on the reply? I cannot quite understand the reply.
    Need not have + Ved = Need not have + verb + ed (simple past form regular verb) or Need not have + simple past form of irregular verb

    I need not have tasted it.
    He need not have driven the car.
    Remember - correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing make posts much easier to read.

  5. #5
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Re: He need / needed not go to school yesterday

    (simple past form regular verb)
    Past participle.

  6. #6
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Re: He need / needed not go to school yesterday

    Quote Originally Posted by Tan Elaine View Post
    What is Ved? Could you or someone else elaborate on the reply? I cannot quite understand the reply.
    He needn't have gone to school yesterday = he went but it was unnecessary
    He didn't need to go to school yesterday = it wasn't necessary and he knew that and most likely didn't go

  7. #7
    BobK's Avatar
    BobK is offline Harmless drudge
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    Re: He need / needed not go to school yesterday

    Quote Originally Posted by Tdol View Post
    Past participle.
    (There's not always an 'ed' around, in case anyone was wondering.)

    b
    PS Recommended background reading: Teach your grandmother to suck eggs - Idiom Definition - UsingEnglish.com

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