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  1. #1
    joham is offline Key Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Student or Learner
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • China
      • Current Location:
      • China
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
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    1,617

    had been sitting, was sitting

    ---What's wrong with your coat?
    ---Just now when I wanted to get off the bus, the man next to me _____ on it.
    This was one of China's College Entrance Examination questions. The given answer was 'had been sitting'. I wondered why another choice, 'was sitting', couldn't be used.
    Could I ask native English teachers to help me? Thank you very much.

  2. #2
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • Japan
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Posts
    74,120

    Re: had been sitting, was sitting

    For me:
    was sitting - still sitting at the time I wanted to leave
    had been sitting - was no longer sitting

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