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Felix
Subject+ verb in past tense + that(clause) ...... I want to know whether we should always use past tense in that clause when the main verb is past tense, even if the clause is still true at present. If not, could you list some examples using the opposite? Thank you.
Oct 29, 2016 8:38 AM
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Hi there, You do not need to use a past tense verb in the 'that' clause if the main verb is in the past tense. If something is still true now, it is better to use present simple after 'that'... 'Yesterday, he said that it's a nice place to visit' - said that + present tense It is also possible to use past tense after 'that' in this situation with the same meaning - 'Yesterday, he said that it was a nice place to visit' - but as you can imagine, it could be quite confusing. The other main tense that we use after 'past tense + that...' is something called future from the past: Future from the past usually talks about things in the future from a past perspective, that have usually already happened at the time of speaking 'He said that he would help us' - said that + 'future from the past' He said in the past that he would help us in the future. The helping has already happened by the time of speaking. 'I knew that it was going to rain' - I knew in the past that it was going to rain in the future, and now it is raining. 'I didn't think we would lose the game' - In the past I didn't think we would lose, but now we have lost. Here is some more information about talking about the future from the past: http://dictionary.cambridge.org/grammar/british-grammar/future-in-the-past If something STILL HASN'T HAPPENED at the time of speaking, we would use this structure: 'He HAS said that he will help us' - HAS said that + future He has said in the past that he will help us, the helping has not happened yet
October 29, 2016
Yes ..You can use present tense if you are talking about the true fact .For instance :- 1. Teacher said that the earth is round. 2. Ram told Sam that he had gone to college. ( here the last sentence is in past because it is not the true fact. I hope it will help you to dispel your doubt.
October 29, 2016
Thanks, Peachey.
October 29, 2016
Follow the past tense. It's extremely rare to jump from past to present and, in general, suddenly moving between tenses is considered a basic mistake in English. Keep things consistent; don't overthink it.
October 29, 2016
Hi Peachey. For example, 'I agreed that the sky was blue.'. When I choose verb tense in the clause, is it depending on whether the clause is still true at present? Or we just simply go with past tense because the main verb 'agreed' is past tense?
October 29, 2016
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Felix
Language Skills
Chinese (Mandarin), Chinese (Cantonese), English, Japanese, Russian
Learning Language
English