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    #1

    about "used to"

    Dear all,

    i feel a little puzzled about the use of "used to" in the sentence "ancient people used to spend 60% of their time on entertainment."

    i know we use "used to" to talk about past events which no longer exist in the present time. but i feel that the people we are talking about or the people speaking should be still alive on this world. since the ancient people died long ago and have nothing to do with the present time, can we here use the past simple instead like "ancient people spent 60% of their time on entertainment."?

    lots of thanks

  1. Khosro's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: about "used to"

    Quote Originally Posted by hooootdog View Post
    Dear all,

    i feel a little puzzled about the use of "used to" in the sentence "ancient people used to spend 60% of their time on entertainment."

    i know we use "used to" to talk about past events which no longer exist in the present time. but i feel that the people we are talking about or the people speaking should be still alive on this world. since the ancient people died long ago and have nothing to do with the present time, can we here use the past simple instead like "ancient people spent 60% of their time on entertainment."?

    lots of thanks
    *** Not a teacher ***
    I think what you feel is not right, but the examples one finds in the dictionaries might make him/her believe that "the people we are talking about ... should be still alive on this world".

    I saw this on a website which I think to be a British news site:
    "Dining the way the Romans used to do"
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/foodanddr...sed-to-do.html

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    #3

    Re: about "used to"

    Quote Originally Posted by Khosro View Post
    *** Not a teacher ***
    I think what you feel is not right, but the examples one finds in the dictionaries might make him/her believe that "the people we are talking about ... should be still alive on this world".

    I saw this on a website which I think to be a British news site:
    "Dining the way the Romans used to do"
    Dining the way the Romans used to do - Telegraph
    thank you, Khosro. it's a big help! i really appreciate it.

  2. AlexAD's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: about "used to"

    Hello.

    Could I ask you a minor question?

    I was good at chemistry while I was studying at school, so will there be any difference between "I was good at chemistry" and "I used to be good at chemistry"?

    May I add just in case that I can't say that I'm good at chemistry at the moment because I alluded to chemistry was being taugh at school.

    Thanks,
    Alex.

  3. AlexAD's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: about "used to"

    I'd be gratefull if I'd hear something from you.

  4. Raymott's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: about "used to"

    Quote Originally Posted by hooootdog View Post
    Dear all,

    i feel a little puzzled about the use of "used to" in the sentence "ancient people used to spend 60% of their time on entertainment."

    i know we use "used to" to talk about past events which no longer exist in the present time. but i feel that the people we are talking about or the people speaking should be still alive on this world. since the ancient people died long ago and have nothing to do with the present time, can we here use the past simple instead like "ancient people spent 60% of their time on entertainment."?

    lots of thanks
    Yes, you're right. This is a redundancy. It's not necessary, but it's not wrong.

    About chemistry, you can say either. You can say, "I used to be good at chemistry" without a qualifying time period, but "I was good at chemistry" doesn't make sense without "at school" or some other time phrase.

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