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  1. #1
    Tan Elaine is online now Key Member
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    Default He talks as though he knows / knew everything

    He talks as though he knows everything.
    He talks as though he knew everything.

    Is there a difference in meaning between the sentences? Thanks.

  2. #2
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    probus is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: He talks as though he knows / knew everything

    Only the first sentence seems natural and correct to me. I would use knew everything only if the first verb was in a past tense. He talked/was talking as if he knew everything.

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    Default Re: He talks as though he knows / knew everything

    Yes, you could say English has a 'tense harmony' one could compare to the Hungarian vowel harmony:

    He speaks like he knows everything.
    He spoke like he knew everything.

    I think you are right.
    I thought you were right.

    In each case, the second verb in the past tense (knew, were) doesn't really indicate a past time, but we put it in the past most of the time because it 'matches' the sentence as a whole.

  4. #4
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    Route21 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: He talks as though he knows / knew everything

    The OP used the term "as though" (which I would have personally used) rather than "like".
    Is there any difference in appropriate usage or nuance between the two?

    I would also see the follow-on as being, potentially, "but he is/was just regurgitating, parrot-fashion, what someone else had written".

    Regards
    R21

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