VVD

‘would rather’ | ‘it’s time’ + PAST TENSE CLAUSE

Here we look at examples of using ‘the past tense’ in a way that is not referring to past time.  In these EXPERT EXAMPLES: It’s time we started to think about the environment and a little bit less about money. Isle of Man Newspapers As an environmentalist, we would rather that didn’t happen. TED ‘the past tense’ expresses a wish that is distanced from the real situation. In reality, they are not thinking …

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WOULDN’T (past willingness)

‘Willingness‘ = being prepared to do something (readiness). In the English Grammar Profile, B1 point 105 in the category of MODALITY is defined: negative forms of ‘would’ to talk about willingness in the past. For example: Dad wanted him buried in the family plot in St Louis, but Pete wouldn’t allow it. Philomena Helen, come on! She wouldn’t wait for you. Edward Scissorhands The EGP examples include the bare infinitives ‘wait’ and ‘allow’.  This is incredibly …

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ordering past events

Point 35 in the category of PAST is defined: past simple to order sequences of events in the past, in the context of narratives. PELIC STUDENT EXAMPLE: I looked at the sheet and thought about it and then I continued following my sheet. When I noticed that I should have arrived, I called my brother and he told me that I had the wrong directions. Arabic male, level 5 grammar class. Two of the EGP examples use ‘and then’ while one only uses ‘and’ to connect past …

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WISH + past simple

In the English Grammar Profile, B1 point 21 in the category of PAST is defined as: past simple with ‘wish (that)’ to express regret that things are not different. TLC STUDENT SPEAKING TEST EXAMPLE: I listen to music a lot and sometimes I wish that my life was a musical. male Spain C2 EXPERT EXAMPLES:  I wish I never called. TED There were many moments growing up where I wished that I was white. TED *Note that past perfect is also possible with …

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ALWAYS + past simple

In the English Grammar Profile, B1 point 25 in the category of PAST simple  is defined as: habitual states or actions. PELIC STUDENT EXAMPLE: They always went back late. Chinese male, level 3, writing class. EXPERT EXAMPLE: He would take me with him on his jobs and say, ” Come on Jo, let’s go do something to make this world a better place.”  His hands were wide and calloused, and they always reminded me of displaced tree roots. TED Both examples in the EGP follow the pattern ‘always + past simple verb’ An iWeb search …

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THIS + time word

In the English Grammar Profile, B1 point 42 in the category of DETERMINERS/demonstratives is defined as: ‘this’ with time and date words to refer to the past. Speaking test example: When did you go to London? I went this year. TLC, Male, Italy, B1 A search in iWeb for: _VVD this_D _NNT1 1 SAID THIS WEEK 5943 2 ANNOUNCED THIS WEEK 3344 …

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DIRECT SPEECH (initial or end position)

The following two B1 points are only different in the order. Point 4 in REPORTED SPEECH is defined as: DIRECT SPEECH, REPORTING CLAUSE, INITIAL POSITION: report speech and thought directly, using the reporting verb before the reporting clause Point 9 is END POSITION: report speech and thought directly using the reporting verb after the reporting …

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complex ordering of past events

In the English Grammar Profile, C1 point 86 in the category of PAST is defined as: past simple to order sequences of events in the past in a complex way. *What constitutes ‘complex ordering’ is not clearly explained in the grammar description. The English Grammar Profile examples are: Following advice from a friend, I purchased …

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past simple questions (with a wide range of verbs)

English Grammar Profile C1 point 81 in the category of PAST/simple is defined as: ‘yes/no’, ‘wh-‘, tag and negative question forms with a wide range of verbs. *This is more about vocabulary than grammar. We have tried to cover this same topic also here.   However, we’ll attempt to focus on what is C1 in this …

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I thought… (polite)

English Grammar Profile C1 point 80 in the category of PAST is defined as: past simple ‘I thought’ as a politeness structure to sound less direct. However, there is no way to formally decide if this is actually a politeness construction.  If it is not, it might still contain B2 modal passive or B1 reporting structures. For …

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past simple affirmative (range)

Here’s an example of past simple with academic collocation: I added some information now. (listen to this sentence) There are 3 entries in the English Grammar Profile for past simple affirmative range.  This point is best covered by the English Vocabulary Profile since it offers much more detail about vocabulary. A1 point 1 is defined: past simple affirmative form …

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reporting clause (mid position)

reporting verbs in order of frequency - found in the middle of reporting.

Point 15 in the category of REPORTED SPEECH / DIRECT SPEECH is defined as: the reporting verb in the mid position of the reported clause. Here’s a list of the 10 most common B2 reporting verbs found in the mid position: claimed, commented, muttered, observed, recalled, remarked, responded, sighed, stated, whispered This is a very …

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past perfect simple (report of statements)

Point 75 in the category of PAST is defined as: Past perfect simple to report statements, where the main verb in the reporting clause is in the past simple. *This point overlaps B1. So we might surmise that ‘said’ and ‘told’ are B1 and other reporting verbs might be B2 within this structure. A search …

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conjunction + past simple

In the English Grammar Profile, there are two points that overlap.  B2 point 55 is defined as: PAST simple after ‘if’ as a politeness structure, especially in letters and emails. B2 point 72 is defined as: the past simple with a range of subordinating conjunctions, including ‘as soon as’, ‘before’, ‘if’, ‘once’, ‘since’, ‘so’, ‘until’, …

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past + singular noun

It is very possible to have a noun after a past participle. 1 TAKEN (VVN) PLACE (NN1) 57019 2 TAKEN (VVN) CARE (NN1) 52472 3 TAKEN (VVN) ADVANTAGE (NN1) 15507 4 MADE (VVN) PUBLIC (NN1_JJ_RR@) 14502 5 ELECTED (VVN_JJ@) PRESIDENT (NN1) 10852 6 TAKEN (VVN) PART (NN1) 9235 7 BUILT (VVN) ENVIRONMENT (NN1) 7734 8 …

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