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  1. Fazzu's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Tamil
      • Home Country:
      • India
      • Current Location:
      • Singapore

    • Join Date: Jun 2006
    • Posts: 397
    #1

    Tense consistency- very bad,good?

    I would like to know if I am correct to say:

    "While Barbara puts in her contact lenses, the telephone rang".
    The word 'while' here is talking about present tense and so we use the word 'rang' as the telephone had rung, right?

    "By the time negotiations began, many pessimists have expressed doubt about them".
    I have changed 'began' into 'had begun', am I right?

    "The moderator asks for questions as soon as the speaker has finished."
    I think the sentence above has the appropriate tenses, am I right?

    "Everyone hopes the plan would work."
    It should be "hoped" or you should change as "the plan will work" if you do not want to change 'hopes' to 'hoped'. Again, am I right?

    Thanks a bunch,

  2. Casiopea's Avatar

    • Join Date: Sep 2003
    • Posts: 12,970
    #2

    Re: Tense consistency- very bad,good?

    "While Barbara puts in her contact lenses, the telephone rang".
    The word 'while' here is talking about present tense and so we use the word 'rang' as the telephone had rung, right?
    Incorrect. 'while' means at the same time as.

    "By the time negotiations began, many pessimists have expressed doubt about them".
    I have changed 'began' into 'had begun', am I right?
    'have expressed' doesn't fit.

    "The moderator asks for questions as soon as the speaker has finished."
    I think the sentence above has the appropriate tenses, am I right?
    It's awkward.

    "Everyone hopes the plan would work."
    It should be "hoped" or you should change as "the plan will work" if you do not want to change 'hopes' to 'hoped'. Again, am I right?[/quote]'hoped'. Right!

    Work on the others.

    All the best.

  3. Fazzu's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Tamil
      • Home Country:
      • India
      • Current Location:
      • Singapore

    • Join Date: Jun 2006
    • Posts: 397
    #3

    Re: Tense consistency- very bad,good?

    "While Barbara puts in her contact lenses, the telephone rang".
    The word 'while' here is talking about present tense and so we use the word 'rang' as the telephone had rung, right?
    Quote Originally Posted by Casiopea
    Incorrect. 'while' means at the same time as.
    So, I should say 'the telephone was ringing', is it?And is it correct to say 'puts' in the sentence?If not, why?

    "By the time negotiations began, many pessimists have expressed doubt about them".
    I have changed 'began' into 'had begun', am I right?
    Quote Originally Posted by Casiopea
    'have expressed' doesn't fit.
    If I use 'had begun' can it be 'had expressed'?What's the difference between
    'had begun' and 'began'?

    "The moderator asks for questions as soon as the speaker has finished."
    I think the sentence above has the appropriate tenses, am I right?
    Quote Originally Posted by Casiopea
    It's awkward
    Casiopea, I really didn't managed to get it correct. Should it be 'asked'?but why 'asked' as 'has' is in present tense?

    Thanks for the wishes.

    I am really weak in my grammar of 'perfect progressives'.I think the above ones are something to do with this 'perfect progressive tenses',please explain to me where and how I should use the tense correctly and also the mistakes in brief so that I could understand properly.By the way I am sitting for my GCE 'O' level this end of the year, will the English paper be difficult?

  4. Casiopea's Avatar

    • Join Date: Sep 2003
    • Posts: 12,970
    #4

    Re: Tense consistency- very bad,good?

    Quote Originally Posted by Fazzu View Post
    So, I should say 'the telephone was ringing', is it?And is it correct to say 'puts' in the sentence?If not, why?
    Try,

    Ex: While Barbara was putting in her contact lenses, the telephone rang.
    => past 'was putting', past 'rang'.
    => 'while' is an adverb of time.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fazzu
    If I use 'had begun' can it be 'had expressed'?What's the difference between 'had begun' and 'began'?
    The past perfect (had + ed/en) is used to connect to events in time. The verb dressed in perfect 'had + ed/en' happened first.

    Here's a trick:

    List the events
    pessimists expressed doubts
    negotiations began

    Find the event that happened first
    Event 1: pessimists expressed doubts
    Event 2: negotiations began

    Add 'had + ed/en' to the verb
    pessimists had expressed doubts

    Ex: By the time negotiations began, many pessimists expressed had (already) expressed doubt about them.
    => 'By the time' is an adverb of time.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fazzu
    The moderator asks for questions as soon as the speaker has finished.
    Try,

    Ex: The moderator asked for questions as soon as the speaker had finished.
    => past 'asked'; past 'had finished'
    => 'as soon as' is a time adverbial.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fazzu
    please explain to me where and how I should use the tense correctly...
    Here's are two sites that are helpful. Click here and here.

    Quote Originally Posted by Fazzu
    By the way I am sitting for my GCE 'O' level this end of the year, will the English paper be difficult?
    Gee, Fazzu, I wouldn't know if it's diffcult or not. You see, I am Canadian and we don't have 'O' levels.

    All the best.

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