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  1. sara88's Avatar

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    #1

    Cleaned/ had cleaned

    Hello everyone
    Those are two sentences:
    Sara cleaned the house before her mother came to visit.
    Sara had cleaned the house before her mother came to visit.
    I think they have similar meaning. Am I right?

  2. Soup's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Cleaned/ had cleaned

    Quote Originally Posted by sara88 View Post
    Hello everyone
    Those are two sentences:
    Sara (had) cleaned the house before her mother came to visit.
    Sara had cleaned the house before her mother came to visit.
    I think they have similar meaning. Am I right?
    Correct. The first one is indicative of Amerian English: had tends to be omitted because it shares the same semantic contribution as before.

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    #3

    Re: Cleaned/ had cleaned

    Quote Originally Posted by sara88 View Post
    Hello everyone
    Those are two sentences:
    Sara cleaned the house before her mother came to visit.
    Sara had cleaned the house before her mother came to visit.
    I think they have similar meaning. Am I right?
    It is better to say Sara had cleaned the house before her mother came to visit - the sentence is in the past, but which of these actions happened first? Sara first cleaned the house (that's why we use past perfect) and then her mother came (here we use past simple tense).


  3. Soup's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Cleaned/ had cleaned

    Quote Originally Posted by branka View Post
    It is better to say Sara had cleaned the house before her mother came to visit
    Better is a subjective word. 'Better' in terms of keeping to the traditional model, yes; 'Better' in term of economy and efficiency, no. Had and before express the same thing. In other words, one of them is redundant, which is why speakers (USA) tend to drop had. (Dropping before would result in ungrammaticallity.)

    Event 1: Sara (had) cleaned the house before ...
    Event 2: Her mother came home.

  4. sara88's Avatar

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    #5

    Re: Cleaned/ had cleaned

    Quote Originally Posted by Soup View Post
    . Had and before express the same thing. In other words, one of them is redundant, which is why speakers (USA) tend to drop had. (Dropping before would result in ungrammaticallity.)

    I agree with you Soup, I have learned that from my grammar book. We can use just past simple tense when a "before" or "after" is there, because it's already implied by their use; which action took place first. However, when we use "when"; this time we have to use both of the present perfect and the past simple or other tenses inorder to clarify which action came first and so on.

    Thanks alot everyone for your help.

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