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  1. Volcano1985's Avatar
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    #1

    Before/After + Past Perfect

    Nasa launched GP-B on 20 April, 2004, but it started funding the mission concept in 1963, long before Neil Armstrong had stepped on the Moon.

    What I know is we use past perfect after after, so shouldn't have it been like that:

    Nasa launched GP-B on 20 April, 2004, but it had started funding the mission concept in 1963, long before Neil Armstrong stepped on the Moon.

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    #2

    Re: Before/After + Past Perfect

    Quote Originally Posted by Volcano1985 View Post
    Nasa launched GP-B on 20 April, 2004, but it started funding the mission concept in 1963, long before Neil Armstrong had stepped on the Moon.

    What I know is we use past perfect after after, so shouldn't have it been like that:

    Nasa launched GP-B on 20 April, 2004, but it had started funding the mission concept in 1963, long before Neil Armstrong stepped on the Moon.
    I would say: NASA lauched GP-B on 20 Aprial, but it started funding the mission concept in 1963, long before Neil Armstrong stepped on the Moon.

    Hope natives are coming soon.

  2. freezeframe's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: Before/After + Past Perfect

    Quote Originally Posted by Volcano1985 View Post
    Nasa launched GP-B on 20 April, 2004, but it started funding the mission concept in 1963, long before Neil Armstrong had stepped on the Moon.

    What I know is we use past perfect after after, so shouldn't have it been like that:

    Nasa launched GP-B on 20 April, 2004, but it had started funding the mission concept in 1963, long before Neil Armstrong stepped on the Moon.
    In my interpretation, the past perfect shows that the event is completed in the past and has no relation to the other two verbs.

    The other verb, started, is related to launched.

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    #4

    Re: Before/After + Past Perfect

    Quote Originally Posted by Volcano1985 View Post
    Nasa launched GP-B on 20 April, 2004, but it started funding the mission concept in 1963, long before Neil Armstrong had stepped on the Moon.

    What I know is we use past perfect after after, so shouldn't have it been like that:

    Nasa launched GP-B on 20 April, 2004, but it had started funding the mission concept in 1963, long before Neil Armstrong stepped on the Moon.


    ***** A NON-TEACHER's COMMENT *****


    (1) I could not sleep last night because I was thinking about your

    question.

    (2) Could you tell us the publication that printed this sentence?

    (Some publications have a reputation for "excellent" English.)

    (3) I have been studying LQZ's and Freezeframe's answers very

    carefully and have learned a lot from them.

    (4) PLEASE: could other members also contribute their thoughts???

    (I really want to get some sleep tonight.)


    Respectfully yours,


    James

    P.S. Thanks for your question. I now realize how little of the past

    perfect I understand. It is good to be humbled.

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    #5

    Re: Before/After + Past Perfect

    Hi, all,

    I am back to expand my explanation.
    Nasa NASA launched GP-B on 20 April, 2004, but it had started funding the mission concept in 1963, long before Neil Armstrong (had) stepped on the Moon.
    1 All letters of NASA should be capitalized.
    2 "Had started" indicates that the action of funding was completed (finished or perfected) at some point in 1963, which makes no sense at all.
    3 Either "had stepped" or "stepped" is fine. I've come across many sentences using the past perfect or the past tense after an "after". But I would say the past tense is more commonly used.


    Note: I am neither an English teacher nor a native. So if I am wrong, please correct me. Thanks.

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    #6

    Re: Before/After + Past Perfect

    Quote Originally Posted by Volcano1985 View Post
    Nasa launched GP-B on 20 April, 2004, but it started funding the mission concept in 1963, long before Neil Armstrong had stepped on the Moon.

    What I know is we use past perfect after after, so shouldn't have it been like that:

    Nasa launched GP-B on 20 April, 2004, but it had started funding the mission concept in 1963, long before Neil Armstrong stepped on the Moon.
    =Not a Teacher=

    Your version is more logical, but many native speakers would happily say, "NASA lauched GP-B on 20 April, but it started funding the mission concept in 1963, long before Neil Armstrong stepped on the Moon", as LQZ suggested originally. We do not always worry too much about the past perfect,

  3. Raymott's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: Before/After + Past Perfect

    Quote Originally Posted by Volcano1985 View Post
    Nasa launched GP-B on 20 April, 2004, but it started funding the mission concept in 1963, long before Neil Armstrong had stepped on the Moon.

    What I know is we use past perfect after after, so shouldn't have it been like that:

    Nasa launched GP-B on 20 April, 2004, but it had started funding the mission concept in 1963, long before Neil Armstrong stepped on the Moon.
    Yes, you're right. The author is apparently trying to place Neil Armstrong before 2004, and making a mess of it.
    Neil Armstrong had stepped on the Moon long before NASA launched GP-B on 20 April, 2004, and the GP-B mission concept had been funded long before that.
    Your sentence is a proper correction.

  4. freezeframe's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: Before/After + Past Perfect

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    Yes, you're right. The author is apparently trying to place Neil Armstrong before 2004, and making a mess of it.
    Neil Armstrong had stepped on the Moon long before NASA launched GP-B on 20 April, 2004, and the GP-B mission concept had been funded long before that.
    Your sentence is a proper correction.
    But your version changes the logical connection between the elements.

  5. Raymott's Avatar
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    #9

    Re: Before/After + Past Perfect

    Quote Originally Posted by freezeframe View Post
    But your version changes the logical connection between the elements.
    Perhaps, but there is no logically correct version of something that is illogical. "A happened long before B had happened" is illogical, even though one can guess the probable intended meaning.
    As I said, the OP's sentence is a correct version of the author's probable intent.

  6. Volcano1985's Avatar
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    #10

    Re: Before/After + Past Perfect

    BBC News - Gravity Probe B confirms Einstein effects

    Thanks all for contributing, I'm sometimes not sure for the sentences on BBC whether they are gramatically correct, BBC and mistake with English shouldn't be.That's why I need to ask here, thanks again.

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