Need some help with "Present Perfect vs Past Simple" I had a task, looks like that some time ago: -- Tom ... his hand when he was cooking the dinner --. And there were 3 ways to answer - a) burnt, b) was burning, c) has burnt. And couldn't choose among "A" and "C". So, I know, that we normally use Present Perfect, when the action finished in the past, but we don't know when exactly (or it isn't important) and we have the connnection with now. But there isn't any markers of the time in the task and we can see Past Continuos and this tense can't be finished (because it is continous, xd). So, I'm confused a bit. Can somebody tell me why I have to use this or that response option and explain WHY?
Sep 21, 2018 7:24 AM
Answers · 3
The time marker = when he WAS. Burnt is the answer because it was a completed action within the continuous action "was cooking". "Was burning" is possible if Tom was crazy and intentionally burns his hand while cooking, plus you would need to change 'when' to 'while'. As text books and texts don't usually feature crazy people who self-harm you can be pretty confident that this is not the answer.
September 21, 2018
The simple past is normally used for a completed action at a known moment in the past (a known time that is explicitly stated or understood from context). The past perfect is normally used for a completed action at an unknown moment during a time period that extends to the present. Here, Tom burnt his hand at a known time (while he was cooking).
September 21, 2018
Still haven’t found your answers?
Write down your questions and let the native speakers help you!