Student or Learner
Grammar teaches us that in the sentence 'This is the first time (that) I've been to London', we have to use the perfect tense after 'that'.
I wonder why there's no such rule 'of perfect tense' over the sentence 'That was the last time (that) I saw her' or 'Today is the last time I shall give you a lesson in French'.
Michael Swan says in his PRACTICAL ENGLISH USAGE that after the following structures we should use the present perfect tense:
This/ That/ It is the first/second/ third etc
This/ That/ It is the only...
This/ That/ It is the best/ finest/ worst/ most interesting etc
This is the first time (that) I've felt really relaxed for months.
This is the first time (that) I've heard her sing.
That's the seventeenth beer (that) you've drunk this evening.
It was the third time that he was in love that year.
Sorry, Swan's original sentence is:
It was the third time that he had been in love that year.
I've read similar advice in other grammar books.
Last edited by joham; 11-Dec-2007 at 07:04. Reason: wrongly written.
Is this an English vs Canadian problem again?
Joham's questions and the answer of 2006 have helped me to clear my doubts too. Thanks