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  1. Nightmare85's Avatar
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    #1

    That, this, these, those

    Hello,
    On an Internet site I read the following information:
    This: Singular - Present/(Future)
    That: Singular - Past
    These: Plural - Present/(Future)
    Those: Plural - Past

    Examples:
    This is a nice match.
    That was a nice match.
    These guys are my friends.
    Those guys were my friends.


    So, however, I doubt it's wrong to use that with Present, and so on.
    Even teachers, members, and I use such things which would not match the information I wrote above.

    What do you think?

    Cheers!

  2. Barb_D's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: That, this, these, those

    You can use "that" (or those) for anything that is not immediately at hand, including things in the present.

    That restaurant is my favorite. (pointing out the window as you drive past) is fine.
    That young man is really going to go places.



    It's actually a good description that I'd never thought of before, but I'm not sure I agree completely. For example, we are talking about some people who I'm no longer friendly with, but you're telling me they did something really awful. I still may say (as we are in the same discussion), "Oh come one. These guys [we are talking about] were my friends once. I'll never believe they were capable of that." (And I may say "Those guys" too, but I don't find either one wrong.)
    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

    Exclamation Re: That, this, these, those

    Quote Originally Posted by Nightmare85 View Post
    Hello,
    So, however, I doubt it's wrong to use that with Present, and so on.
    Even teachers, members, and I use such things which would not match the information I wrote above.

    What do you think?

    Cheers!
    You can use ‘that’ and ‘those’ with present tense when referring to concrete objects away from you, as:
    What is that over there on the wall?
    That is a picture,
    Who are standing over there at the gate?
    Those are students of this school.
    The words “This, That, These and Those” are known as Demonstratives which require contextual information (they depend on an external frame of reference) that indicate which entities a speaker refers to and distinguishes those entities from others. We make a two-way distinction between demonstratives. Typically, one set of demonstratives is proximal, indicating objects close to the speaker (this, these), and the other series is distal, indicating objects further removed from the speaker (that, those). We use these words as demonstrative adjective (determiner) to modify a noun and as demonstrative pronouns to refer to objects according as it is proximal or distal with reference to the speaker.

    While the primary function of demonstratives is to provide spatial references of concrete objects (that building, this table), there is a secondary function: referring to items of discourse. For example:
    This sentence is short.
    I said her dress looked hideous. She didn't like that.
    Did you see the yesterday’s match. Oh! Yes, that was a nice match.
    In the above, this sentence refers to the sentence being spoken (present), and that or that mach refers to the content of the previous statement (past). These are abstract entities of discourse, not concrete objects

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