Results 1 to 4 of 4
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • Hong Kong
      • Current Location:
      • Hong Kong

    • Join Date: Aug 2011
    • Posts: 1,031
    #1

    What was/is his name?

    A: His surname is Fatchen.
    B: What was/is his name? (B did'nt hear the name clearly)

    Should we say 'was' or 'is' in sentence 2?

    Thanks.

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • England
      • Current Location:
      • England

    • Join Date: Jun 2010
    • Posts: 24,453
    #2

    Re: What was/is his name?

    is

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • Hong Kong
      • Current Location:
      • Hong Kong

    • Join Date: Aug 2011
    • Posts: 1,031
    #3

    Re: What was/is his name?

    "What was his name (=What did you say his name was)?" is written by a non-native speaker in a book.

    Do you agree?

    Thanks.

  1. emsr2d2's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • UK

    • Join Date: Jul 2009
    • Posts: 41,822
    #4

    Re: What was/is his name?

    You'll hear both. Although his name "is" still the same (and probably will be for his entire life), people also say "was" to give the idea of "What was it he said when he said his name?"

    Your dialogue isn't very natural though. If B simply didn't hear what A said clearly, B would probably just say "Sorry?" or "Pardon?" or "Eh?"(!)

    A: His surname is Fatchen.
    B: Pardon? I didn't hear that. What did you say his name was?
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •