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    #1

    Question Summary of text written in past tense - which tense?

    Hello !

    I am writing an essay at the moment and I want to integrate a summary of a text.

    How should I summarize a travel narrative from the 19th century, which is written only in the past tense (and third person)?
    Normally you summarize using the present tense - how should I summarize this text - present or past?

    thank you for your help!!

  1. Matthew Wai's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Summary of text written in past tense - which tense?

    For what it's worth, 'always write your summary in the past tense, using reported speech.'── quoted from http://dd.dgacm.org/editorialmanual/...ons/link_f.htm

    Not a teacher.

  2. Raymott's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: Summary of text written in past tense - which tense?

    I would possibly use the present tense, unless I was writing for the United Nations.

    UN: "It is recorded/reported/well-known that, in his travels to the Galapagos Islands and from other sources, Darwin discovered evidence for evolution."
    Me1: "In his travels to the Galapagos islands, and from other sources, Darwin discovered evidence for evolution."
    Me2: "In his epic adventure in Galapagos Islands, Darwin discovers evidence for evolution, that he carefully chronicles... However, it will be some time (future in the past) before his discoveries come to light."

    You can choose whatever tense you like as long as you remain consistent with the text, and with your choice.

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