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  1. Newbie
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    #1

    "in the last year" (Present perfect) vs "last year" (Past Simple)

    Hi, everyone.

    There is a rule: we use Past Simple tense when time is mentioned and definite.
    For instance: last year / week / ..., yesterday, ago.
    When we speak about action happened at a ustated time isn't mentioned and only the result of one completed action is reasonably important for us we use Present Perfect tense.

    There are three sentences:

    1. I went to Mexico last year.
    2. I have been to Mexico in the last year.
    3. I have seen that movie six times in the last month.

    In the first case we use Simple because our time is mentioned (the calendar year before now, e.g. if today is 2017 we have 2016 year).
    The second statement means we has gone to Mexico in the period of time between now and 365 before now, so unstated past time. And the third has this period between current date and 31 days before now and means only the result (emphasis on six times).
    Do I understand it correctly? Thanks in advance.

  2. Piscean's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: "in the last year" (Present perfect) vs "last year" (Past Simple)

    You have the general idea.

  3. Newbie
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    #3

    Re: "in the last year" (Present perfect) vs "last year" (Past Simple)

    Quote Originally Posted by Piscean View Post
    You have the general idea.
    I want to note I am not a native speaker, so I don't completely understand it?

  4. VIP Member
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    #4

    Re: "in the last year" (Present perfect) vs "last year" (Past Simple)

    Quote Originally Posted by Piscean View Post
    You have the general idea.
    Quote Originally Posted by Anthony Voronkov View Post
    I want to note I am not a native speaker, so I don't completely understand it?
    The rule you summarized works most of the time. Your understanding ("idea") is correct in general.
    I am not a teacher.

  5. Newbie
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    #5

    Re: "in the last year" (Present perfect) vs "last year" (Past Simple)

    Quote Originally Posted by GoesStation View Post
    The rule you summarized works most of the time. Your understanding ("idea") is correct in general.
    So I would ask you about exceptions in this case.

  6. Piscean's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: "in the last year" (Present perfect) vs "last year" (Past Simple)

    If I were you, I'd worry about any exceptions when you meet them - and by all means ask us about them in this forum.

    Some of us prefer to use such words as general(ly), normal(ly) and usual(ly) rather than always. We know from bitter experience that, whenever we use always (or never), somebody will come up with an exception.

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    #7

    Re: "in the last year" (Present perfect) vs "last year" (Past Simple)

    Good point, Piscean. I worded my previous post carefully; even though I couldn't think of any exceptions, I wasn't willing to rule them out.
    I am not a teacher.

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