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    #1

    Simple past or past perfect?

    Which is correct?(past perfect or simple past?)

    1. I completed/had completed my university degree by 1995.
    2. Maria finished/had finished packing by 3:00 p.m.

  1. AlexAD's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Simple past or past perfect?

    Not a teacher, nor a native.
    I would choose the past perfect in both examples, but not sure about it.
    Last edited by AlexAD; 25-Jan-2012 at 16:59.

  2. 5jj's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: Simple past or past perfect?

    Both are possible.

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    #4

    Re: Simple past or past perfect?

    thanks:)

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    #5

    Re: Simple past or past perfect?

    By rules of grammar past perfect is the choice in both as the actions were completed before another time in the past . By intuition also I feel more comfortable with past perfect in both sentences; however some may argue that in the second sentence the proximity of the action to the present may allow for simple past to be correct too. In any case if spoken the tense would hardly be noticed by the general public.

  4. 5jj's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: Simple past or past perfect?

    Quote Originally Posted by Nersi View Post
    By rules of grammar past perfect is the choice in both as the actions were completed before another time in the past .
    What rules of grammar are you referring to? The following two examples are fine.

    I finished my homwork and then went out.
    I finished my homework before I went out.


    I think that in the original sentences 'by' makes the past perfect more likely, but that is not a 'rule'.

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