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  1. fabio409's Avatar
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    #1

    "No man ever yet became great by imitation." [past simple?]

    I've just seen this sentence on the cover photo of an American English native speaker's profile on Facebook:

    "No man ever yet became great by imitation."

    Doesn't "ever" necessarily convey the meaning of an experience? In that case, the experience of not having ever noticed a possibilty become true?

    If so, isn't the use of perfect aspect required?

    Thank you!
    Last edited by fabio409; 22-Sep-2016 at 03:53.

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    #2

    Re: "No man ever yet became great by imitation." [simple past?]

    Don't take my word for this; I'm half expecting to be corrected, but I think this is present simple. "Ever" might suggest past tense, but "ever yet" brings that into the present; it means "has so far", or "up to this point in time".

    Waiting to see what the experts make of that...

  2. Piscean's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: "No man ever yet became great by imitation." [past simple?]

    'Ever' can convey the idea of 'at any time the the past', and became (past simple) is possible.
    It can also convey the idea of 'at any time extending from the past up to the present moment', and has become (present perfect) is also possible.
    It can also simply convey the idea of 'at any time', and becomes (present simple) and will become (expressing futurity) will also work.

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