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Examples of English Tenses


English tenses

These are examples of the English tenses. The table is provided to help you recall the different tenses studied in previous lessons. For more detailed explanations you should visit the Grammar Study Pages and study the different tenses.

Other links related to English tenses

Tenses | Forms and Explanations

Exercises on tenses.

Explanations Present Simple
Action that is repeated every Friday. Habitual action. I visit my uncle every Friday
Facts that are believed to be true. Generalizations Cats hate mice.
The sun rises in the morning.
Scheduled events in the near future The plane takes off at 10 o'clock tonight
Explanations Present Progressive
Action that takes place now / at the moment I am working on my computer
Near future I am leaving tomorrow
Explanations Present Perfect
To talk about experiences I have been to Italy.
Past action that has the result in the present. She has read that book.
Action which started in the past and continued up to now. I have lived in this town for 12 years.
Explanations Present Perfect Progressive
To show that something started in the past and has continued up until now. He has been sleeping for the last 3 hours
To talk about an action that started in the past and stopped recently. The grass is wet because it has been raining all day long.
To talk about an action that started in the past and is continuing now. I have been watching TV for 2 hours / since you left.
Explanations Past Simple
Completed action in the past. She left yesterday.
To talk about an action that started in the past and stopped recently. She woke up, had a shower and left.
To talk about an action that started in the past and is continuing now. If I had a million dollar, I would help the poor.
An action taking place in the middle of another action. She was playing when the accident occurred.
Explanations Past Progressive
Actions happening at the same time in the past. He was reading a newspaper while his wife was preparing dinner.
Interrupted action in the past. Sh was reading a book when the light went off, had a shower and left.
Explanations Past Perfect Simple
Completed action before another action in the past. She had left when I arrived.
Explanations Past Perfect Progressive
To show that something started in the past and continued up until another action stopped it. They had been playing soccer when the accident occurred
To show that something started in the past and continued up until another time in the past. I had been living in that town for ten years before I moved to New York.
We use the Past Perfect Continuous before another action in the past to show cause and effect. I was so tired. I had been working for 6 hours.
Explanations Future  Simple
Instant decisions I've left the door open; I'll close it.
We use the simple future , when we predict a future situation She'll pass the exam. She's hardworking.
We use the simple future with: "I (don't) think...", "I expect...", "I am sure...", "I wonder...", "probably". It will probably rain tonight
Conditional sentence type one If I have enough time, I'll watch the film.
Explanations Future Progressive
Action that will be taking place at some time in the future. When you arrive, I'll be sleeping .
Explanations Future Perfect
Completed action before another action in the past By tomorrow, I will have finished the work.
Explanations Future Perfect Progressive
It is used to show that an action will continue up until a particular event or time in the future. She will have been working for over 8 hours by the time her children arrive.

Tenses | Forms and Explanations

Exercises on tenses.

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