Past Simple b present perfect

Past simple и Present perfect (Часть 2-я)

Продолжаю рассказывать о правилах использование времен английского глагола Past simple и Present perfect. Ссылку на первую часть этой грамматической темы вы найдете в конце статьи. Обязательно обратите внимание на эти тонкости английской грамматики. Это важно потому что, что в русском языке у глагола всего три времени, поэтому мы часто путаемся в английской временах.

A. Do not use the present perfect (I have done) when you talk about a finished time (for example, yesterday / ten minutes ago / in 1985 / when I was a child). Use a past tense:

  • The weather was nice yesterday, (not ‘has been nice’)
  • They arrived ten minutes ago. (not ‘have arrived’)
  • I ate a lot of sweets when I was a child, (not ‘have eaten’)
  • A: Did you see the news on television last night? (not ‘Have you seen’)
    B: No, I went to bed early, (not ‘have gone’)

Use a past tense to ask When_? or What time_?:

  • When did they arrive? (not ‘have they arrived’)
  • What time did you finish work?


Present perfect
  • Tom has lost his key. He can’t get into the house.

Here, we are not thinking of the past action. We are thinking of the present result of the action:
Tom doesn’t have his key now.

Past simple

  • Tom lost his key yesterday. He couldn’t get into the house.

Here, we are thinking of the action in the past. We don’t know from this sentence whether Tom has his key now.

B. Compare present perfect and past:

Present perfect (have done)

  • I’ve done a lot of work today.
  • We use the present perfect for a period of time that continues from the past until now.
  • For example, today, this week, since 1985.
  • It hasn’t rained this week.
  • Have you seen Ann this morning? (it is still morning)
  • Have you seen Ann recently?
  • I don’t know where Ann is. I haven’t seen her. (= I haven’t seen her recently)
  • We’ve been waiting for an hour. (we are still waiting now)
  • Ian lives in London. He has lived there for seven years.
  • I have never played golf. (in my life)

The present perfect always has a connection with now.

Past simple (did)

  • I did a lot of work yesterday.
  • We use the past simple for a finished time in the past.
  • For example, yesterday, last week, from 1985 to 1991.
  • It didn’t rain last week.
  • Did you see Ann this morning? (it is now afternoon or evening)
  • Did you see Ann on Sunday?
  • A: Was Ann at the party on Sunday?
  • B: I don’t think so. I didn’t see her.
  • We waited (or were waiting) for an hour. (we are no longer waiting)
  • Ian lived in Scotland for ten years. Now he lives in London.
  • I didn’t play golf when I was on holiday last summer.

The past simple tells us only about the past.


1 Are the underlined parts of these sentences right or wrong? Correct the ones that are wrong.

  1. I’ve lost my key. I can’t find it anywhere. ___________________________________________
  2. Have you seen the news on television last night? ___________________________________________
  3. I’ve bought a new car. Do you want to see it? ___________________________________________
  4. I’ve bought a new car last week. ________________________________________________________
  5. Where have you been yesterday evening?________________________________________________
  6. Jenny has left school in 1991. __________________________________________________________
  7. I’m looking for Mike. Have you seen him? _____________________________________________
  8. I’m very hungry. I haven’t eaten anything today. ________________________________________
  9. Diane hasn’t been at work yesterday____________________________________________________
  10. When has this book been published?____________________________________________________

2 Make sentences from the words in brackets. Use the present perfect or past simple.

  1. (it / not / rain / this week) ___________________________________________ _________
  2. the weather / be / cold / recently)   The weather _________________________________________
  3. (it / cold / last week)    It ______________________________________________________________
  4. (I / not / read / a newspaper yesterday)   I________________________________________________
  5. (I / not / read / a newspaper today)    _____________________________________________________
  6. (Ann / earn / a lot of money / this year)    ________________________________________________
  7. (she / not / earn / so much / last year)    __________________________________________________
  8. (you / have / a holiday recently?)    _______________________________________________________

3 Put the verb into the correct form, present perfect or past simple

  1. I don’t know where Amy is. _ ____________________________(you/see) her?
  2. When I______(get) home last night, I_________ (be)  very tired and I__________(go) straight to bed.
  3. Your car looks very clean. _________________________ (you/wash) it?
  4. George _________________________ (not/be) very well last week.
  5. Mr Clark ________________________ (work) in a bank for 15 years. Then he gave it up.
  6. Molly lives in Dublin. She _________________________ (live) there all her life.
  7. «____________ (you/go) to the cinema last night?»   ‘Yes, but it _______ (be) a mistake. The film ________ (be) awful.’
  8. My grandfather _____……___ (die) 30 years ago. I______________________(never/meet) him.
  9. I don’t know Carol’s husband. I_________________________ (never/meet/him).

A: Is your father at home?
B: No, I’m afraid he _________________________ (go) out.
A: When exactly _________________________ (he/go) out?
B: About ten minutes ago.

A: Where do you live?
B: In Boston.
A: How long _________________________ (you/live) there?
B: Five years.
A: Where _________________________ (you/live) before that?
B: In Chicago.
A: And how long ________________________ (you/live) in Chicago?
B: Two years.

4 Write sentences about yourself using the ideas in brackets.

  1. (something you haven’t done today) __________________________________________________
  2. (something you haven’t done today) __________________________________________________
  3. (something you didn’t do yesterday) __________________________________________________
  4. something you did yesterday evening) ________________________________________________
  5. (something you haven’t done recently) ________________________________________________
  6. (something you’ve done a lot recently) ________________________________________________
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