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  1. #1
    cubezero3's Avatar
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    Default He will eat it. I believe he will feel sorry that he "did" it. Or should I say does?

    Hello, everyone.

    This question jumped into my mind while I was listening to this week's Comedy of the Week from Radio 4.

    The comedian used "did". I have encountered situations where past tense is used to denote to a future event, as in He said he would be at school tomorrow. So I guess the usage is a correct one.

    My question is whether it is equally right to use the simple present tense, that is does, here in replacement of did.

    Many thanks

    Richard

  2. #2
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    Default Re: He will eat it. I believe he will feel sorry that he "did" it. Or should I say do

    I asked him if he works in London, and he said he does.

    Or: I asked him if he worked in London, and he said he did.
    Please do not edit your question after it has received a response. Such editing can make the response hard for others to understand.


  3. #3
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    Default Re: He will eat it. I believe he will feel sorry that he "did" it. Or should I say do

    I reread what I wrote and realized I didn't make myself clear.

    My question referred to the setence in the title. He will eat it. I believe he will feel sorry he did it.

    This is not the one I heard from radio 4 but the concept is there. What I believe he will feel sorry about hasn't happened yet, I wonder whether does can be used in replacement of did, sisce it refers to a future event.

  4. #4
    SoothingDave is online now VIP Member
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    Default Re: He will eat it. I believe he will feel sorry that he "did" it. Or should I say do

    No, "did" is correct. He will feel sorry (in the future) about something that he "did" (in the past, when viewed from his vantage in our future). It will be a past event when he "feels sorry" for it.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: He will eat it. I believe he will feel sorry that he "did" it. Or should I say do

    And this is so, even the sentence is written or spoken at a time earlier than either his feeling sorry about it or his eating it? This is something new to me. I thought all the tenses are decided based on the the time relationships between the events in question and when the sentence is written or spoken.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: He will eat it. I believe he will feel sorry that he "did" it. Or should I say do

    "He will eat it. I believe he will feel sorry he did it." I find this extremely unnatural. It would be a bit more likely as:"He will eat it. I think he'll regret it."
    Even then I don't like it much.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: He will eat it. I believe he will feel sorry that he "did" it. Or should I say do

    Quote Originally Posted by cubezero3 View Post
    And this is so, even the sentence is written or spoken at a time earlier than either his feeling sorry about it or his eating it? This is something new to me. I thought all the tenses are decided based on the the time relationships between the events in question and when the sentence is written or spoken.
    When we are speaking, most of us do not consciously think about what tenses we should use to make the time-relationships of the various situations absolutely clear. If we are careful when we are writing, we tend to produce something that won't upset the grammarians.
    Please do not edit your question after it has received a response. Such editing can make the response hard for others to understand.


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