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  1. #1
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    Present perfect and past simple in America

    In British English present perfect is used for an action in the past with a result now:
    "I've lost my key. Have you seen it?"

    In American English present perfect OR past simple can be used:
    "I've lost my key. Have you seen it?"
    or
    "I lost my key. Did you see it?"

    Question:
    Which form is more common in American English?

  2. #2
    mykwyner is offline Key Member
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    Re: Present perfect and past simple in America

    I say, "I lost my key. Have you seen it?"

    I lost my key is a single event that happened at a particular time in the past.

    Have you seen it is an event that could have happened at any time in the past since the key was lost, up to and including the present.

  3. #3
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    Re: Present perfect and past simple in America

    Quote Originally Posted by mykwyner
    I say, "I lost my key. Have you seen it?"
    I lost my key is a single event that happened at a particular time in the past.
    Have you seen it is an event that could have happened at any time in the past since the key was lost, up to and including the present.
    OK, but let us say you wanted to say that Bill went out recently and didn't come back yet... which form would you use then?

    1. 'Where's Bill?', 'he's gone out'
    or
    2. he went out.

    that is, which form do you use in your daily life, when somebody asks you similar questions? or does it differ from the situation, that is, both forms are equaly common?

  4. #4
    mykwyner is offline Key Member
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    Re: Present perfect and past simple in America

    I suppose that I use 2 more frequently, but I use 1 a lot also.

  5. #5
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    Re: Present perfect and past simple in America

    Quote Originally Posted by mykwyner
    I suppose that I use 2 more frequently, but I use 1 a lot also.
    But you don't feel any difference when you do, do you?

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