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  1. #1
    rambharosey is offline Junior Member
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    What tense is this sentence in?

    Are the following two sentences in a different tense:
    (a) The dictator had his opponents hanged.

    (b) The dictator had hanged his opponents.

    I believe (a) is in simple past, while (b) is in past perfect.

    How do we differentiate, since both sentences use "had hanged"?

  2. #2
    teechar's Avatar
    teechar is offline Moderator
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    Re: What tense is this sentence in?

    Quote Originally Posted by rambharosey View Post
    Are the following two sentences in different tenses:
    (a) The dictator had his opponents hanged.

    (b) The dictator had hanged his opponents.

    I believe (a) is in simple past, while (b) is in past perfect.

    How do we differentiate, since both sentences use "had hanged"?
    Yes, "a" is in the past simple, while "b" is in the past perfect.

    In "a", "had" is a causative verb. The structure is: have + object + past participle.

  3. #3
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Re: What tense is this sentence in?

    Quote Originally Posted by rambharosey View Post
    How do we differentiate, since both sentences use "had hanged"?
    Word order- which was probably what led you to your correct conclusion.
    Last edited by emsr2d2; 22-Jun-2017 at 13:59. Reason: Fixed typo

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