The differences between "have sent" and "sent" ?

Status
Not open for further replies.

crazYgeeK

Member
Joined
Jun 9, 2010
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
Vietnamese
Home Country
Vietnam
Current Location
Vietnam
Hi, Can anyone here let me know when using "have sent" and when using "sent" instead. Please ! I'm not a native English speaker. Thanks to all.
 

philadelphia

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 22, 2008
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
French
Home Country
France
Current Location
France
Eg I sent it yesterday/ We sent it last week. => There is a rupture between today and yesterday/last week - simple past

Eg I have just sent it/ We have sent it in the morning. => There is no rupture as the day is the same - present perfect.

Pay attention, it is getting common in spoken English to use the simple past while it should be the present perfect. Eg I did it earlier (same day). That is not correct in formal English.

Not a teacher at all
 

sarat_106

Key Member
Joined
Mar 19, 2008
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
Oriya
Home Country
India
Current Location
India
Hi, Can anyone here let me know when using "have sent" and when using "sent" instead. Please ! I'm not a native English speaker. Thanks to all.

I have sent the letter this week. (The present perfect is used when the time period has NOT finished, as ‘this week’ means the time is continuing)
I sent the letter last week. (The simple past is used when the time period HAS finished; ‘last week’ is finished)
 
Joined
Jan 9, 2010
Member Type
English Teacher
Native Language
Serbian
Home Country
Serbia
Current Location
Serbia
Well, it usually depends on the context, but I'll try to point out a basic difference.

Sent - when there is a specific time
* I sent the letter yesterday.

Have sent - to refer to an action that started some time in the past and has just finished. Also when there's no specific time
 

crazYgeeK

Member
Joined
Jun 9, 2010
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
Vietnamese
Home Country
Vietnam
Current Location
Vietnam
Thanks to all, let me ask more a question please, when I reply to your posts I want to post a sentence like "my trouble was solved !", Should it be "my trouble was solved" or "my trouble has been solved" ? What should it be when I chat lively with a person and when I post my words to a forum ? Thanks
 

philadelphia

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 22, 2008
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
French
Home Country
France
Current Location
France
Thanks to all, let me ask more a question please,

when I reply to your posts I want to post a sentence like "my trouble was solved !", Should it be "my trouble was solved" or "my trouble has been solved" ? My problem has been solved meaning from now on it will be OK!

What should it be when I chat lively with a person and when I post my words to a forum ?
That is better to speak/write a grammatical English. However, as you like as long as you are understood.

Thanks

^
 

2006

Banned
Joined
Apr 9, 2007
Member Type
Other
Native Language
English
Home Country
Canada
Current Location
Canada
what nonsense! :roll:

"have" is not needed in any of the sentences in the previous posts.
 

2006

Banned
Joined
Apr 9, 2007
Member Type
Other
Native Language
English
Home Country
Canada
Current Location
Canada
Eg I sent it yesterday/ We sent it last week. => There is a rupture between today and yesterday/last week - simple past

Eg I have just sent it/ We have sent it in the morning. => There is no rupture as the day is the same - present perfect. What's magic about the same day? (or the same week)

Pay attention, it is getting common in spoken English to use the simple past while it should be the present perfect. Says who?

Eg I did it earlier (same day). That is not correct in formal English. Says who?


Not a teacher at all
2006
 

philadelphia

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 22, 2008
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
French
Home Country
France
Current Location
France
In all the previous posts there is no need using have... Explain
 

crazYgeeK

Member
Joined
Jun 9, 2010
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
Vietnamese
Home Country
Vietnam
Current Location
Vietnam
what nonsense! :roll:

"have" is not needed in any of the sentences in the previous posts.

did you mean using 'sent' only in any case. Can you give me some examples please. Don't use verbal grammar please. The exact grammar must be in writing not speaking. Thanks !
 

2006

Banned
Joined
Apr 9, 2007
Member Type
Other
Native Language
English
Home Country
Canada
Current Location
Canada
In all the previous posts there is no need using have... Explain
The reasons given for 'having to use' the perfect tense are not valid. Simple past works perfectly well.

British English uses perfect tense more than American English does. But the present perfect sentences have no advantage over the simple past sentences.
 

philadelphia

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 22, 2008
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
French
Home Country
France
Current Location
France
The reasons given for 'having to use' the perfect tense are not valid. Simple past works perfectly well.

British English uses perfect tense more than American English does. But the present perfect sentences have no advantage over the simple past sentences.

Eg I have lived in France for two years. Have is still optional to you, isn't it?!
 

2006

Banned
Joined
Apr 9, 2007
Member Type
Other
Native Language
English
Home Country
Canada
Current Location
Canada
Eg I have lived in France for two years. Have is still optional to you, isn't it?!
No, it's not optional in that sentence if you are still living there.

So sometimes, using present perfect is the only correct way to say something. But very often using present perfect is just one of the ways to say something. The problem is that sometimes students are incorrectly taught that only present perfect is correct in a certain sentence, when in fact simple past tense is also correct in that sentence.
 
Last edited:

philadelphia

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 22, 2008
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
French
Home Country
France
Current Location
France
No, it's not optional in that sentence if you are still living there.

So sometimes, using present perfect is the only correct way to say something. But very often using present perfect is just one of the ways to say something. The problem is that sometimes students are mistakenly taught that only present perfect is correct in a certain sentence.

Accordingly, that is an international teaching problem! May you 2006 help teachers, native speakers, academics, students and learners grasp The rule?
 

2006

Banned
Joined
Apr 9, 2007
Member Type
Other
Native Language
English
Home Country
Canada
Current Location
Canada
Accordingly, that is an international teaching problem! May you 2006 help teachers, native speakers, academics, students and learners grasp The rule?

'The rule' is that you have to use perfect tense when it is needed to express your intended meaning, as in your "have lived in France" sentence.

You don't need perfect tense in sentences like 'I sent the letter this week.' Adding "have" adds nothing to the meaning of the sentence.
If simple past tense expresses your meaning clearly, that's all you need.

 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top