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    #1

    (Grammar)Nothing is matching/matches Tyrrell's men?

    Hello guys!

    It's from the movie "The Mask"

    Lt. Kellaway to his assistant: What do the lab reports says?

    The assistant: We've got some fingerprints on some of the currency, but nothing matches Tyrrell's men.

    More often than not, we use Simple Present Tense for habits or things that we do regularly.("but nothing matches Tyrrell's men" in that context, I don't think it's used for habitual action)

    Sometimes we also use this tense for a situation that we think is more or less permanent but for temporary situations, when we fell something won't continue for a long time we use Present Continuous Tense.("but nothing matches Tyrrell's men" I think "the not matching of the fingerprints" is a permanent situation in that context because the prints are not matching now & they're not going to match in future too.)

    So I conclude "the not matching of the fingerprints" is a permanent situation & not a temporary one, that's why the assistant says: We've got some fingerprints on some of the currency, but nothing matches Tyrrell's men. Instead of,
    We've got some fingerprints on some of the currency, but nothing is matching Tyrrell's men.

    Am I correct?

    Thanks a million in advance

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    #2

    Re: (Grammar)Nothing is matching/matches Tyrrell's men?

    Could you post a few lines before the situation, please? Or you could explain what was happening before the situation you posted. It would help a lot.
    Last edited by Rover_KE; 13-Mar-2015 at 13:40. Reason: Changing 'May' to 'Could'.

  1. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: (Grammar)Nothing is matching/matches Tyrrell's men?

    I don't understand your question. There is nothing unusual about that usage. The information is true in the present.

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    #4

    Re: (Grammar)Nothing is matching/matches Tyrrell's men?

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeNewYork View Post
    I don't understand your question. There is nothing unusual about that usage. The information is true in the present.
    Thanks a lot Mr. Mike for your reply.

    Can we say "We've got some fingerprints on some of the currency, but nothing is matching Tyrrell's men"? I guess we can't.

    I just want to know why can't we use Present Continuous instead of Simple present in the given context?

    PS:As you have explained that if something is true in Present to express that we use Simple Present. e.g.
    I live in New Delhi.

    But I can also use Present Continuous in the similar context. e.g.
    I'm living in New York for a few months.

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    #5

    Re: (Grammar)Nothing is matching/matches Tyrrell's men?

    Quote Originally Posted by Flamboyant lad View Post
    Am I correct?
    Yes, you are. It's a use of the simple present for timeless facts. If the prints don't match Tyrrell's men today, they never will (assuming the system is reliable).
    You can say, while testing, "None of the prints are matching Tyrell's men". Once you've finished testing, you have established that they don't match. Theoretically, you don't have to match them again because just as the sun rises in the morning, the prints don't match Tyrell's men.
    Last edited by Raymott; 13-Mar-2015 at 18:29.

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