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Thread: high time

  1. #11
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: high time

    If you use the past in this structure, you will always be right. Susie's position is that of any exam. You will be able to fins cases where people use the present, but many argue that this is simply wrong, so I'd play safe and use the past.

  2. #12
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    Default Re: high time

    Quote Originally Posted by tdol
    If you use the past in this structure, you will always be right. Susie's position is that of any exam. You will be able to fins cases where people use the present, but many argue that this is simply wrong, so I'd play safe and use the past.
    Thank you for your explanation

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    Default Re: high time

    1) It's time we go to the station.
    2) It's time we went to the station.
    Sentence 1) is short for "It's time we (should) go", wherein the modal "should" has been omitted for reasons based in redundancy. You see, the base verb "go" cannot stand on its own. It needs either a modal, like "should" or the "to" infinitive marker, and if "should" or "to" is missing, speakers do one of three things:

    i) They assume "should" is underlying, and deem the sentence grammatical.
    ii) They assume "go" on its own like that is ungrammatical.
    iii) They combine "should" and "go", giving "went":

    should (past) + go (base) => went (past tense of the base)

    Both 1) and 2) are grammatical. "we go" is short for "we should go", and "we left" is a combination, or temporal throwback, of "should go". They are "equally acceptable" as Mister Micawber states.

    Does that help?

  4. #14
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    Default Re: high time

    Quote Originally Posted by Casiopea
    Sentence 1) is short for "It's time we (should) go", wherein the modal "should" has been omitted for reasons based in redundancy. You see, the base verb "go" cannot stand on its own. It needs either a modal, like "should" or the "to" infinitive marker, and if "should" or "to" is missing, speakers do one of three things:

    i) They assume "should" is underlying, and deem the sentence grammatical.
    ii) They assume "go" on its own like that is ungrammatical.
    iii) They combine "should" and "go", giving "went":

    should (past) + go (base) => went (past tense of the base)

    Both 1) and 2) are grammatical. "we go" is short for "we should go", and "we left" is a combination, or temporal throwback, of "should go". They are "equally acceptable" as Mister Micawber states.

    Does that help?
    Thanks, now I understand it

  5. #15
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: high time


  6. #16
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    hi! There is one thing in english grammar which really baffles me. I do not even know if there is any grammatical term for it so hm....will just give you an example: "I heard you fart at the table yesterday". I always thought it should be "I heard you farting..." Should I say "I saw them kiss" or "I saw them kissing"? Maybe I mix up different things or something. Please, help! Magdalena

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    magdalena is offline Member
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    And there is another thing I am not sure about. Is "She acts as if she was the most important person in the world" the same as "She acts like she is the most important person in the world"? Magdalena

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    Default Re: new thread

    Welcome, Magdalena.

    Please re-post your questions. Go to the top of this page, left-hand corner, where it says English Forums, and click on Ask a Teacher.

    All the best,

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