[Grammar] “It was I that/who + past tense” Vs. “It is I who/that + past tense?

Status
Not open for further replies.

High on grammar

Junior Member
Joined
Nov 18, 2012
Member Type
Interested in Language
Native Language
Persian
Home Country
Iran
Current Location
United States
Dear English teachers:
What is the difference between “It was I that/who + past tense” Vs. “It is I who/that + past tense?
Examples and their sources:
“I must tell you that it is I who went to the kitchen with my mother when Bernard met Kang,”

LIAISON

And it is I who wentto tell the people that the child had been murdered by his father.'

Tears of the Dead: The Social Biography of an African Family - Page 89

"It was I who did all these things . . .The Anointed, The Elect, and The Damned! - Page 138
It was I that wrote you the letters.

when should use a past tense after " I is I who/that...?
Thanks
 

5jj

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Oct 14, 2010
Member Type
Native Language
British English
Home Country
Czech Republic
Current Location
Czech Republic
What is the difference between “It was I that/who + past tense” Vs. “It is I who/that + past tense?
I may be missing something here, but I can't see any difference between those to, except that you have reversed the order of 'that' and 'who'.
[STRIKE]w[/STRIKE]When should I/we/you/one use a past tense after " I is I who/that...?
When what 'I' did took place in the past.
 
Last edited:

High on grammar

Junior Member
Joined
Nov 18, 2012
Member Type
Interested in Language
Native Language
Persian
Home Country
Iran
Current Location
United States
I may be missing something here, but I can't see any difference between those two, except that you have reversed the order of 'that' and 'who'.When what 'I' did took place in the past.

If the action happened in the past , then why the sentence reads: It is (present tense) I that did it >

When do we say it IS I that did it and when " It WAS I that did it"?

Thanks
 

5jj

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Oct 14, 2010
Member Type
Native Language
British English
Home Country
Czech Republic
Current Location
Czech Republic
Sorry - I did indeed miss something.:oops:

'It was I ...' places the whole situation in the past.

'It is I ... 'draws attention to the fact that the speaker, who is (?: was) the person who did whatever it was identifies his/her present views/actions with those that happened in the past.
 

High on grammar

Junior Member
Joined
Nov 18, 2012
Member Type
Interested in Language
Native Language
Persian
Home Country
Iran
Current Location
United States
Thanks. But I would really appreciate it if you would explain it in a much simpler way so that I could understand what you mean by " identifies his/her present views/actions with those that happened in the past.

Thanks again
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top