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  1. Unregistered
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    #1

    Smile presemt perfect/past simple

    Hey :)
    I have a sentence:
    "I cannot text them, because the battery ... (go dead)"
    I know the most appropriate form is "has gone dead". But, is "went dead" acceptable here ?
    Thanks for advance and sorry for my mistakes, as you've already noticed English isn't my first language ;)

  2. Barb_D's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: presemt perfect/past simple

    ... because my battery IS dead.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.


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    #3

    Re: presemt perfect/past simple

    "...because the battery has gone dead."
    and
    "...because the battery is dead."

    ...are both possible. It depends on the speaker's point of view.

    Anyone like to address this?

  3. konungursvia's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: presemt perfect/past simple

    "... because the battery went dead."

    All three are equally possible in AmE. BrE would prefer "has gone dead."

    Using the present indicative here seems a bit simple however. It's almost as though you're daft and knowingly go around with a dead battery. I used to do this with a fake Tag watch when living in Paris. My professor asked me the time, and I had to say, "I don't know, this watch is fake, and it doesn't work." He laughed and called me "brilliant" (actually he said "c'est génial") but meant I was extremely silly.


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    #5

    Re: presemt perfect/past simple

    Using the present indicative here seems a bit simple however. It's almost as though you're daft and knowingly go around with a dead battery.

    ...or I discovered earlier that the battery had gone dead, and I don't have access to my charger till I get home.

    The point is grammar, and the situations in which a particular sentence would be appropriate.

    ..........and the usefulness of wearing a fake watch that doesn't tell you the time? Now, that seems daft ... or if a fake Rolex, then pretentious.

  4. konungursvia's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: presemt perfect/past simple

    It worked when I bought it. I have 7 or 8 watches, and put one on that didn't work, then went to a fancy dinner of French PhDs, including my thesis director. That WAS daft. But funny.

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    #7

    Re: presemt perfect/past simple

    Actually, I had to fill the gap on a test. I wrote "went dead" and my teacher said it was wrong :( I told him I think it's possible in American English, but he disagreed, saying that the American people would say "has gone" too.
    Anyway, thank you for your answers. Now I see, I wasn't wrong that much :)

    * I had to register to reply ;P

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    #8

    Re: presemt perfect/past simple

    Quote Originally Posted by Excalibur View Post
    "...because the battery has gone dead." emphasizes (the process)(what the battery 'did')
    and
    "...because the battery is dead." emphasizes the present state of the battery
    To me, the meanings are exactly the same, and both would fit in the sentence in the original post. "went dead" would work too.
    ...are both possible. It depends on the speaker's point of view.
    2006
    Last edited by 2006; 24-Nov-2009 at 00:46. Reason: minor change


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    #9

    Re: presemt perfect/past simple

    Quote Originally Posted by Unregistered View Post
    Hey :)
    I have a sentence:
    "I cannot text them, because the battery ... (go dead)"
    I know the most appropriate form is "has gone dead". But, is "went dead" acceptable here ?
    Thanks for advance and sorry for my mistakes, as you've already noticed English isn't my first language ;)
    Hi!
    What about this: I cannot text them because the battery went dead two minutes ago.

    The action of going dead was completed in the past at a clearly stated time so the simple past tense can be used.

  6. Barb_D's Avatar
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    #10

    Re: presemt perfect/past simple

    Or "My battery just died."
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

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