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  1. Junior Member
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    #1

    "regret doing something" or "regret having done something"

    Here come two sentences from China English test:

    1. I never regretted ______ offer, for it was not where my interest lay. (Key: D)
    A. not to accept B. not having accepted C. having not accepted D. not accepting

    2. She regrets _ idle when young.
    A. to have been B. her being C. her having D. having been (Key: D)

    From the above-mentioned sentences, I have learnt than regret can be followed by either "doing" or "having done". But what's the difference?

    As for Sentence 2, according to the rules from China's grammars, "having been" happened before the predicate "regret", so Perfect Tense of Non-finite Verb is used here. (I understand this point very clearly)

    But please take a look at Sentence 1, "accpet" also happened before the predicate "regretted", why isn't B correct? Can I think in Sentence 2 B is also correct?

    My students asked me such questions, but I couldn't give them a satisfying explanation. I need your help.
    Last edited by emsr2d2; 17-Aug-2015 at 10:17. Reason: insert blanks among the options by OP (then line breaks added by mod)

  2. bhaisahab's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: "regret doing something" or "regret having done something"

    In 1. the definite article is required before "offer". B and D are both possible.

  3. Matthew Wai's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: "regret doing something" or "regret having done something"

    Quote Originally Posted by xxwzs View Post
    the predicate "regret"
    I think the predicate is 'regrets being idle when young', where 'regrets' is the main verb, but I am not a teacher.

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    #4

    Re: "regret doing something" or "regret having done something"

    Quote Originally Posted by bhaisahab View Post
    In 1. the definite article is required before "offer". B and D are both possible.
    What about Sentence 2, do B and D both work?

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    #5

    Re: "regret doing something" or "regret having done something"

    No – only D works.

    'She regrets being idle when young' would also work, but that's not an option,.

  5. Junior Member
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    #6

    Re: "regret doing something" or "regret having done something"

    Quote Originally Posted by Rover_KE View Post
    No – only D works.

    'She regrets being idle when young' would also work, but that's not an option,.
    So grateful to you. Could you please tell me whether there is any difference between "She regrets being idle when young " and "She regrets having been idle when young ".

  6. Matthew Wai's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: "regret doing something" or "regret having done something"

    I think the following is worth the OP's reference, but I am not a teacher.
    https://www.englishforums.com/Englis...krbdl/post.htm

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    #8

    Re: "regret doing something" or "regret having done something"

    Quote Originally Posted by xxwzs View Post
    Could you please tell me whether there is any difference between "She regrets being idle when young " and "She regrets having been idle when young ".
    There's no practical difference.

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