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    #1

    by 1960, this figure had doubled.

    In the year 1900 just over 4% of the population was aged over 65. However, by 1960 this figure had doubled.

    My question: Why we used past perfect simple in the second sentence, if we talk about thing that happened after (in 1960 compared to 1900)?

  1. Boris Tatarenko's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Grammar question

    I suggest you provide the whole passage because I'm sure you'll find out that you've just omitted some very useful indicators which show why you should use the past perfect here.
    Please, correct all my mistakes. I should know English perfectly and if you show me my mistakes I will achieve my dream a little bit faster. A lot of thanks.

    Not a teacher nor a native speaker.

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    #3

    Re: Grammar question

    Quote Originally Posted by meir4ever View Post
    In the year 1900 just over 4% of the population was aged over 65. However, by 1960 this figure had doubled.

    My question: Why we used past perfect simple in the second sentence, if we talk about thing that happened after (in 1960 compared to 1900)?
    1960 is in the past and we're talking about something from that frame of reference. The doubling had already occurred, so the past perfect is the right choice.
    I am not a teacher.

  2. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Grammar question

    It's the use of "by" followed by a date in the past that creates the need for the past perfect.

    I've been trying to lose weight for six months but by last Saturday, I had lost only half a kilo.

    The "loss of half a kilo" happened before last Saturday, and last Saturday happened before today (when I am speaking) so the past perfect is appropriate.

    In your original example, the "doubling of the percentage" happened before (hence "by") 1960 and 1960 is before now.

    [Cross-posted with GoesStation, whose explanation is better than mine! ]
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

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    #5

    Re: Grammar question

    Ok, I understood.
    Thank you
    Last edited by Rover_KE; 05-Jul-2016 at 22:33.

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    #6

    Re: Grammar question

    Quote Originally Posted by emsr2d2 View Post
    [Cross-posted with GoesStation, whose explanation is better than mine! ]
    That's funny, I was thinking "that's a better explanation than mine" when I got to your disclaimer!
    I am not a teacher.

  3. Piscean's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: Grammar question

    I think each complements the other.

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    #8

    Re: Grammar question

    Quote Originally Posted by Piscean View Post
    I think each complements the other.
    And then we compliment each other. Neat.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

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    #9

    Re: Grammar question

    "Why we used past perfect simple ..."

    The past perfect is not a simple tense, since it uses an auxiliary, making it compound. I know that there are pages on the web that talk about the past perfect simple (I guess to differentiate it from the continuous past perfect), but that's unusual.
    Traditionally, there are simple tenses and compound tenses. I don't see a need to change that.

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    #10

    Re: by 1960, this figure had doubled.

    meir4ever, please note that I have changed your thread title.

    Extract from the Posting Guidelines:


    'Thread titles should include all or part of the word/phrase being discussed.'

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