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Present Perfect vs. Past Simple

Cours-Anglais-Past-Simple-Present-PerfectPRESENT PERFECT

Metti i verbi che trovi tra parentesi al present perfect stando attento alle forme negative, interrogative e interrogative negative! Le soluzioni sono in fondo alla pagina.

  1. “Would you like some coffee? I just (make) some.”

  2. “Where you (be)?” – “I (be) to the dentist.”

  3. “I (not finish) the newspaper yet.”

  4. “Someone (take) my bicycle.”

  5. “You (hear) from her recently?”

  6. “You ever (leave) a restaurant without paying the bill?”

  7. “Why he (not finish)? He (have) lots of time.”

  8. “I often (see) him but I never (speak) to him.”

  9. “She (not see) the film and she (not read) the book.”

  10. “You (not make) a mistake in this exercise?”


PRESENT PERFECT & PAST SIMPLE

Metti i verbi che trovi tra parentesi nel tempo giusto. Entrambe le risposte sono possibili MA in una una delle due il verbo va coniugato con il past simple e nell’altra con il present perfect. A te la scelta! Le soluzioni sono in fondo alla pagina.

  1. “Have they done their homework?” a) “Yes, they (do) it all.” b) “Yes, they (do) it before they left school.”

  2. “Have you been here before?” a) “Yes, I (come) here when I was a boy.” b) “Yes, I (be) here three times.”

  3. “Have you paid the phone bill?” a) “Yes, I (pay) the phone bill and the gas bill.” b) “Yes, I (pay) it while you were away.”

  4. “Has your dog ever attacked anybody?” a) “Yes, he (attack) a policeman last Tuesday.” b) “Yes, he (attack) me and my brother.”

  5. “Have you seen his garden?” a) “No, I (not see) it yet.” b) “I (see) the house on Monday but I (not see) the garden.”


PRESENT PERFECT vs. PAST SIMPLE

Metti i verbi che trovi tra parentesi nel tempo giusto scegliendo tra il present perfect e il past simple. In alcuni casi (sono veramente pochissimi) la scelta del tempo potrebbe dipendere dall’interpretazione che si da alle intenzioni comunicative di chi parla! Le soluzioni sono in fondo alla pagina.

  1. “Shakespeare (write) a lot of plays.”

  2. “My brother (write) a lot of plays. He just (finish) his second tragedy.”

  3. “I (fly) over Loch Ness last week.” – “Really? You (see) the Loch Ness monster?”

  4. “When he (arrive)?” – “He (arrive) at two o’clock.”

  5. “You (close) the door before you left the house?”

  6. “I can’t go out because I (not finish) my work.”

  7. “I (write) the letter but I can’t find a stamp.”

  8. “He (do) this type of work when he (be) in Germany.”

  9. “You (have) breakfast yet?” – “Yes, I (have) it at eight o’clock.”

  10. “You ever (be) to Spain?” – “Yes, I (spend) my holidays there last year.” – “You (have) a good time?” – “No, it (rain) all the time.”

  11. I (buy) this in Bond Street.” – “How much it (cost)?” – “It (cost) £100.”

  12. I (lose) my black gloves. You (see) them?” – “No, when you (lose) them?” – “I don’t know. I (wear) them to the theatre last night.” – “Maybe you (leave) them there.”

  13. “I (read) his books when I was at school. I (enjoy) them very much.”

  14. “Do you know that lady who just (leave) the shop?” – “Yes, she is Miss Thrift. Is she a customer of yours?” – “Not exactly. She (come) into my shop lots of times but she never (buy) anything.”

  15. “He (leave) the house at seven o’clock.” – “Where he (go)?” – “I (not see) where he (go).”

  16. “You (like) your last job?” – “I (like) it in the beginning.”

  17. “That is Mr Minus who teaches me mathematics. He (not have) time to teach me much because I only (start) lessons a week ago.”

  18. “You ever (try) to stop smoking?” – “Yes, I (try) last year, but then I (find) that I was getting fat so I (start) again.

  19. “Where you (find) this knife?” – “I (find) it in the garden.” – “Why you (not leave) it there?”

  20. “You (see) today’s paper?” – “No, anything interesting (happen)?” – “Yes, some of the patients (escape) from our local mental hospital.”

  21. “I just (receive) a letter that says we (not pay) our last gas bill. I (not give) you the money for that last week?” – “Yes, but I’m afraid I (spend) it on other things.”

  22. “You (finish) checking his thesis?” – “No, I (check) about half of it.”

  23. “What are all those people looking at?” – “There (be) an accident.” – “You (see) what (happen)?” – “Yes, a motor cycle (run) into a lorry.”

  24. “I (phone) you twice yesterday and (get) no answer.”

  25. “When I (buy) my new house I (ask) for a telephone. The Post Office (tell) me to wait, but I (wait) for a year now and my phone still (not come).”

 


ATTENZIONE
VERSIONE CORRETTA QUI SOTTO

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SPIEGAZIONI SU RICHIESTA

(nei commenti)


PRESENT PERFECT

  1. “Would you like some coffee? I have just made some.”

  2. “Where have you been?” – “I’ve been to the dentist.”

  3. “I haven’t finished the newspaper yet.”

  4. “Someone has taken my bicycle.”

  5. Have you heard from her recently?”

  6. Have you ever left a restaurant without paying the bill?”

  7. “Why hasn’t he finished? He’s had lots of time.”

  8. “I have often seen him but I have never spoken to him.”

  9. “She hasn’t seen the film and she hasn’t read the book.”

  10. Haven’t you made a mistake in this exercise?”


PRESENT PERFECT & PAST SIMPLE

  1. “Have they done their homework?” a) “Yes, they have done it all.” b) “Yes, they did it before they left school.”

  2. “Have you been here before?” a) “Yes, I came here when I was a boy.” b) “Yes, I’ve been here three times.”

  3. “Have you paid the phone bill?” a) “Yes, I’ve paid the phone bill and the gas bill.” b) “Yes, I paid it while you were away.”

  4. “Has your dog ever attacked anybody?” a) “Yes, he attacked a policeman last Tuesday.” b) “Yes, he’s attacked me and my brother.”

  5. “Have you seen his garden?” a) “No, I haven’t seen it yet.” b) “I saw the house on Monday but I didn’t see* the garden.”

* Possibile seconda formulazione: “but I haven’t seen the garden.” Solo nel caso in cui chi parla nutre ancora delle speranze di poter vedere il giardino qualche giorno.


PRESENT PERFECT vs. PAST SIMPLE

  1. “Shakespeare wrote a lot of plays.”

  2. “My brother’s written a lot of plays. He’s just finished his second tragedy.”

  3. “I flew over Loch Ness last week.” – “Really? Did you see the Loch Ness monster?”

  4. “When did he arrive?” – “He arrived at two o’clock.”

  5. Did you close the door before you left the house?”

  6. “I can’t go out because I haven’t finished my work.”

  7. “I’ve written the letter but I can’t find a stamp.”

  8. “He did this type of work when he was in Germany.”

  9. Have you had breakfast yet?” – “Yes, I had it at eight o’clock.”

  10. Have you ever been to Spain?” – “Yes, I spent my holidays there last year.” – “Did you have a good time?” – “No, it rained all the time.”

  11. I bought this in Bond Street.” – “How much did it cost?” – “It cost £100.”

  12. I’ve lost my black gloves. Have you seen them?” – “No, when did you lose them?” – “I don’t know. I wore them to the theatre last night.” – “Maybe you left them there.”

  13. “I read his books when I was at school. I enjoyed them very much.”

  14. “Do you know that lady who’s just left the shop?” – “Yes, she is Miss Thrift. Is she a customer of yours?” – “Not exactly. She’s come into my shop lots of times but she’s never bought anything.”

  15. “He left the house at seven o’clock.” – “Where did he go?” – “I didn’t see where he went.”

  16. Did you like your last job?” – “I liked it in the beginning.”

  17. “That is Mr Minus who teaches me mathematics. He hasn’t had time to teach me much because I only started lessons a week ago.”

  18. Have you ever tried to stop smoking?” – “Yes, I tried last year, but then I found that I was getting fat so I started* again.

  19. “Where did you find this knife?” – “I found it in the garden.” – “Why didn’t you leave it there?”

  20. Have you seen today’s paper?” – “No, has anything interesting happened?” – “Yes, some of the patients have escaped from our local mental hospital.”

  21. “I have just received a letter that says we haven’t paid** our last gas bill. Didn’t I give you the money for that last week?” – “Yes, but I’m afraid I spent*** it on other things.”

  22. Have you finished checking his thesis?” – “No, I’ve checked about half of it.”

  23. “What are all those people looking at?” – “There has been an accident.” – “Did you see what happened?” – “Yes, a motor cycle ran into a lorry.”

  24. “I phoned you twice yesterday and got no answer.”

  25. “When I bought my new house I asked for a telephone. The Post Office told me to wait, but I’ve waited for a year now and my phone still hasn’t come.”

* Possibile seconda formulazione: “…I’ve started again.” Solo nel caso in cui chi parla ha appena ricominciato a fumare.
** Possibile seconda formulazione: “…says we didn’t pay our last gas bill.” Solo nel caso in cui chi parla si riferisce più alla data di scadenza dell’ultima bolletta e non tanto al fatto che dovrà comunque pagarla.
*** Possibile seconda formulazione: “…I’m afraid I’ve spent it on other things.” Solo nel caso in cui chi parla vuole mettere l’enfasi sul fatto che i soldi non ci sono più piuttosto che sulle spese fatte.


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9 risposte a “Present Perfect vs. Past Simple

  1. CalMaFdd

    14 luglio 2016 at 13:26

    Sorry for bothering but I’m taking seriously this lesson and there is still something I can’t say I’ve really got it.

    This is your solution
    I bought this in Bond Street.” – “How much did it cost?” – “It cost £100.”

    By heart, I’d have written the same but, according with this
    ( https://ingliando.net/language/uso-dei-tempi-dei-verbi/present-perfect-simple-indefinite-past-risultato-evidente-nel-presente/ )

    I decided for…
    I’ve bought this in Bond Street.” – “How much did it cost?” – “It cost £100.”

    Indefinite past, evident in the present.

    Perhaps the difference is really thin and sometimes the boundaries are blurry. I don’t know.

    Thanks in advance

     
    • Tony

      14 luglio 2016 at 13:34

      This is a very tricky one which I explain in my lessons but which I haven’t explained here as it is a complex issue. To explain in just a few words I would say that in this case the “adverb of place” (Bond Street) effectively does the job of the “adverb of time”. The person speaking is clearly no longer in Bond Street, right? So the action of buying is no longer tied to the present. It’s as if you are really saying, “I bought this (WHEN I WAS) in Bond Street.” Does that help?

      P.S. There is another similar example later on in the exercise…

       
      • CalMaFdd

        14 luglio 2016 at 14:10

        Of course now, after your additional explanation, I understand better (and it also makes sense).

        There are, btw, other situations I’d like to ask you about.

        For example, in the last part of this sentence you use the past simple and I wonder why.

        “I’ve lost my black gloves. Have you seen them?”………“Maybe you left them there.”

        It might be because the context, clearly shows that we’re talking of something definitely happened in the past “I wore them to the theatre last night”?

        I mean, taking out the last sentence and strictly applying the rule shouldn’t it be “you’ve left them there”?

        “That is Mr Minus who teaches me mathematics. He hasn’t had time to teach me much because I only start lessons a week ago.”

        I suppose “start” is a typo (should be started, I guess)

        Another tricky one, for me

        “Where did you find this knife?” – “I found it in the garden.” – “Why didn’t you leave it there?”

        Why not

        Where have you found…. ? I’ve found…. Why haven’t you left….

        Last not Least

        “What are all those people looking at?” – “There has been an accident.” – “Did you see what happened?” – “Yes, a motor cycle ran into a lorry.”

        which makes me think again that the choice of the past, from “Did you see” up to “ran” is related to the context (we know we’re talking of something happened).

        Forgive my verbosity but I’d like to fill this gap.

        What a pity I’m not living in Catania (which I love, btw)

         
        • Tony

          14 luglio 2016 at 14:59

          (Bear in mind that this is one of the most elusive areas of English learning in my view and one that I have tried to study in depth in order to be able to explain it at least reasonably well!)

          In general try apply two “tests” to a sentence to see if it has the right conditions for the present perfect:
          1. Ask yourself WHEN? If you can find a good, clear, precise answer then it is past simple. If your answer is: “boh”, “non so”, “non si capisce”, “non lo dice”, “non mi interesse”, then it is present perfect! (Obviously this is a quick guide, non always perfect but VERY uesful if applied correctly.)
          2. Does your sentence in some way contain the idea of “finora”? (I don’t mean that “finora” should necessarily work in the sentence in Italian but the IDEA of “finora”). If it does, then it’s present perfect again. This test is not as good as the QUANDO test but simetimes it can be useful.

          More specifically:

          “Maybe you left them there” – Q. WHEN? A. When you were at the theatre last night = Past Simple

          “start” was indeed a typo and I’ve corrected it (thanks again!)

          “Where did you find this knife” – this is the other example of the “adverb of place” doing the job of the “adverb of time”. In this case try thinking of it like this: “Where WERE YOU WHEN you found this knife?”

          When we talk about something that has happened recently, we use the present perfect as long as we keep our conversation very general and don’t mention the time or start to talk about details related to the actual event. Usually this means that the present perfect is good at the beginning, and often only for one question and an answer. Then we start talking about details and it becomes a “story” and then we need the past simple. This is the case with the accident. When we say “Did you see what happened?” it is as if we are saying, “WERE YOU HERE when it happened? Can you tell me the story?

          Hope that helps. 🙂

           
          • CalMaFdd

            14 luglio 2016 at 18:46

            It helps a lot indeed!
            Thanks so much again

             
  2. CalMaFdd

    14 luglio 2016 at 11:15

    “He left the house at seven o’clock.” – “Where did he go?” – “I didn’t see where he go.”

    Sorry I don’t understand that “I didn’t see where he go”.

    Shouldnt’ it be “I didn’t see where he went”.

     
    • Tony

      14 luglio 2016 at 12:01

      Indeed! Must have slipped the net! Thanks. I’ve corrected it now. ◉‿◉

       

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