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    #1

    Is/Was Sent

    Suppose the situation is a newly-hired employee at a company, but he is suspected of being a spy for a rival company.

    "There is suspicion that the new hire is/was sent by a rival company."

    Should I use the past or present tense? Does the reason for using the present tense in "He IS/WAS buried here" apply here?

  1. Barb_D's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Is/Was Sent

    The act of sending is in the past.
    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

    Re: Is/Was Sent

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post
    The act of sending is in the past.
    Even if the effect of the sending (being a member of the target company) is still part of the current situation?

  2. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Is/Was Sent

    As Barb said, you need "was" in your sentence. Your question about "buried" is different. When used with "was" it refers to the action of burying her. When used with "is" it refers to the presence of the body in the grave.

  3. Barb_D's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: Is/Was Sent

    It's an interesting question.

    You bury someone, and they remain buried.
    You send someone, but they don't remain "sent." After they are sent, they are just "there."

    The verbs are different which is why the tense needs to be different.
    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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