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    • Join Date: Apr 2006
    • Posts: 80
    #1

    Confusing

    Good morning!. Alright? I hope so.

    1.- "I had my things packed around midday".

    2.- "I packed my things around midday"


    I think thereīs a difference between these two sentences. I wanna
    say that "my things were packed around midday". Did I get it
    in the first sentence?. Maybe, but I donīt know if itīs
    grammatically correct. Specially in using
    "My things" in the middle of the past perfect. Shouldnīt it be
    "I had packed MY THINGS around midday"?. On the other hand,
    I am afraid the second one means "I did
    it at midday, at that point of time". Is it so?


    Thanks in advance!



    Jesús

  1. Casiopea's Avatar

    • Join Date: Sep 2003
    • Posts: 12,970
    #2

    Re: Confusing

    The first sentence is ambiguous. It has two different meanings:

    1. I had my things packed around midday.
    => I had someone pack my things around midday.
    => I packed my things before midday, and had them waiting and ready to go around midday.

    2. I packed my things around midday.
    => I started packing my things around midday. I did it around midday.

    Sentence 3. is also ambiguous:

    3. My things were packed around midday.
    => I packed them around midday.
    => Someone else packed them around midday.
    => My things were packed (stative) and ready to go around midday.

    Try,

    4. My things were waiting and ready to go around midday.

    Note, the following structures do not express the same thing:

    (a) I had packed my things <I did the packing>
    (b) I had my things <I did the packing OR someone else did the packing>

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