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    #1

    to have cheated or to cheat

    To synthesise the following sentence, I used the present perfect tense “have cheated”. In the context, it sounds weird to me to use simple past tense. I’m unsure. Kindly help me to understand the reason for the correct answer.

    Question: Addy cheated in the examination. It was very silly of him.

    My answer: It was very silly of Addy to have cheated in the examination.

    Thank you!

  1. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: to have cheated or to cheat

    Your sentence is correct. You could also say "It was very silly of Addy to cheat in the examination". It is clear that the cheating happened in the past from the use of "It was" at the beginning. However, I prefer your sentence.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  2. Matthew Wai's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: to have cheated or to cheat

    Quote Originally Posted by Oceanlike View Post
    the present perfect tense “have cheated”.
    I would call 'to have cheated' the perfect infinitive, but I am not a teacher.

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    #4

    Re: to have cheated or to cheat

    @Matthew: What is the perfect infinitive?

    Thank you!

  3. Matthew Wai's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: to have cheated or to cheat

    I consider 'to have + past participle' to be the perfect infinitive, but I am not a teacher.
    http://dictionary.cambridge.org/gram...to-have-worked
    Last edited by Matthew Wai; 12-Jul-2015 at 13:18.

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    #6

    Re: to have cheated or to cheat

    It is.

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    #7

    Re: to have cheated or to cheat

    The pedantic side of me prefers "It was silly of me to cheat". The other form suggests to me that the cheating preceded the being silly.

    This may be hair-splitting in this particular example, but becomes more important in a pair such as "He was sorry to leave her" and "He was sorry to have left her".

  5. Matthew Wai's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: to have cheated or to cheat

    Quote Originally Posted by Piscean View Post
    "He was sorry to leave her"
    He felt sorry when he left her.

    Quote Originally Posted by Piscean View Post
    "He was sorry to have left her".
    He didn't feel sorry when he left her, but he felt sorry afterward.

    Quote Originally Posted by Oceanlike View Post
    It was very silly of Addy to have cheated in the examination.
    Addy was not silly when he cheated, but he became silly afterward.

    Please correct me if I am wrong, as I am not a teacher.

  6. Piscean's Avatar
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    #9

    Re: to have cheated or to cheat

    Quote Originally Posted by Matthew Wai View Post
    1. He felt sorry when he left her.
    2.He didn't feel sorry when he left her, but he felt sorry afterward.

    3.Addy was not silly when he cheated, but he became silly afterward.

    Please correct me if I am wrong, as I am not a teacher.
    1. Yes.
    2. we don't know how he felt when he left her, but he certainly felt sorry afterwards.
    3. Addy did not become silly. The speaker feels that a situation in which Addy had cheated previously was silly. As I suggested in my earlier post, this is splitting hairs for this specific example.

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