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    • Join Date: Apr 2008
    • Posts: 1,571
    #1

    past continuous

    - What were you doing in England?
    - First, I was working, then I was travelling.

    Is past continuous OK here?


    • Join Date: Nov 2007
    • Posts: 5,409
    #2

    Re: past continuous

    Yes.

    What do you understand as being the difference between the perspective of a speaker using the Simple Past, versus Past Continuous?


    • Join Date: Apr 2008
    • Posts: 1,571
    #3

    Re: past continuous

    Why I sumbled at this sentence was because on the one hand activity is meant, on the other - we have a succession of actions which is normally a characterristic of past simple.


    • Join Date: Nov 2007
    • Posts: 5,409
    #4

    Re: past continuous

    You can do the same with Past Continuous, using '(and) then', which indicates the sequence of events.


    • Join Date: Feb 2008
    • Posts: 484
    #5

    Re: past continuous

    Quote Originally Posted by Clark View Post
    - What were you doing in England?
    - First, I was working, then I was travelling.

    Is past continuous OK here?
    The answer to “What were you doing in ENGland?” (with the sentence stress on ENGland) would be something like: “Well, yes, it’s true I avoid going to England if it’s at all possible. But this time I had no options. I had to go there for my work

    In other words, if the sentence stress is on England, the speaker is expressing surprise. It would be equivalent to “What on earth were you doing in England?” or “What ever were you doing in England?” or “What were you doing in England of all places

    The answer to “Yes, but what were you DOing in England? (with the stress on DOing) would be something like the answer you propose: “First, I was working, then I was travelling” or merely “Working then travelling

    If the question were in the past simple, “What did you do in England?”, the answer would most likely be in the past simple: “First I worked, then I travelled” but could also be “First, I was working, then I was travelling” or merely “Working then travelling” (as above.)

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