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  1. learning54's Avatar
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    #1

    What the difference is between the past and present perfect in these 2

    Hi teachers,
    If a student asks me what the diffference is between these two sentences besides the tense, what should I say?

    a) She has had a large breakfast twice.
    b) She had a large breakfast twice.

    a) She has gotten up early a few times.
    b) She got up early a few times.

    I know that if a put a present time marker or a past time marker will clarify the difference, but what if I leave it the way it is.

    Thanks in advance.
    Last edited by learning54; 05-Nov-2012 at 09:28.

  2. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: What the difference is between the past and present perfect in these 2

    Quote Originally Posted by learning54 View Post
    Hi teachers,
    If a student asks me what the diffference is between these two sentences besides the tense, what should I say?

    a) She has had a large breakfast twice.
    b) She had a large breakfast twice.

    a) She has gotten up early a few times.
    b) She got up early a few times.

    I know that if a put a present time marker or a past time marker will clarify the difference, but what if I leave it the way it is.

    Thanks in advance.
    The first is rather odd. I can't imagine any situation where "She [has] had a large breakfast twice" would be necessary. If nothing else, it would be more likely to say "She [has] had two large breakfasts".

    With the second, the main difference is that we don't use "to have gotten [up]" in BrE.
    Remember - correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing make posts much easier to read.

  3. learning54's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: What the difference is between the past and present perfect in these 2

    Hi,
    Thank you for your reply.
    Let me change the sentences.
    a) They have had lunch together twice.
    b) They had lunch together twice.

    TS

  4. 5jj's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: What the difference is between the past and present perfect in these 2

    Quote Originally Posted by learning54 View Post
    a) They have had lunch together twice.
    b) They had lunch together twice.
    It's the normal difference between the present perfect and the past simple. In the first, the time period in the speaker's mind extends up to the present moment; in the second, it's past.

  5. learning54's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: What the difference is between the past and present perfect in these 2

    Hi 5jj,
    Thank you for that one. That's exactly what I was looking for!

    L.

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