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Thread: tense question

  1. #1
    todd2009 is offline Newbie
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    Default tense question

    The two extracts from Pride&Prejudice

    1. ‘You have a house in town, I conclude?’
    Mr. Darcy bowed.
    ' I had once had some thought of fixing in town myself—for I am fond of superior society; but I did not feel quite certain that the air of London would agree with Lady Lucas.’

    2. ‘If my children are silly, I must hope to be always sensible of it.’
    ‘Yes—but as it happens, they are all of them very clever.’
    ‘This is the only point, I flatter myself, on which we do not agree. I had hoped that our sentiments coincided in every particular, but I must so far differ from you as to think our two youngest daughters uncommonly foolish.’


    The grammar says the past perfect tense expresses action in the past before another action in the past. This is the past in the past. In the above examples, the speakers expresse actions in the past rather than ones in the past before another action in the past. why is the past perfect tens here being used?


    Thanks for your help :)

  2. #2
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    Default Re: tense question

    The grammar says the past perfect tense expresses action in the past before another action in the past.

    I had once had some thought of fixing in town myself—for I am fond of superior society; but I did not feel quite certain that the air of London would agree with Lady Lucas.’

    had ...had: Past Perfect
    did...feel : Simple Past tense

    This is the only point, I flatter myself, on which we do not agree. I had hoped that our sentiments coincided in every particular, but I must so far differ from you as to think our two youngest daughters uncommonly foolish.’

    had hoped :Past Perfect
    coincided : Simple Past tense
    Last edited by David L.; 23-Mar-2009 at 07:55.

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