Introduction to Tenses Part 1

While reading something by what means do we understand if the actions are happening in the past, present or will happen in future? In language rules, we specify time by adjusting the verbs consequently.

Let’s understand how this is done in Introduction to Tenses.

In English language rules, verbs are often used in a way that it specifies or represents the time when an instance happened. These verbs that take up diverse forms to indicate the time of an action, happening or state by altering its form are called as tenses.

Tenses can be broadly classified into three broad categories:

Past Tense

Present Tense

Future Tense

Using each of these tenses, there are four characteristics accompanying it. A characteristic here talks about the nature of action performed by the verb.

Perfect or complete

Perfect continuous

Progressive or Continuous

Simple or indefinite

So we get total possibilities of 12 tenses in English grammar.

Let us grasp more about each of these groups of tenses

Past Tense

Past tense comes in use when we want to mention something that occurred earlier. Occasionally, past tense is also called as ‘simple past tense’. Example: We stayed in a guesthouse

Past continuous tense: This category of past tense is used to define an occasion or incidence that is ongoing or continuing in the past. Example: We were playing basketball at the club.

Past Perfect Tense: This category of tense is used to label an incident in the past that has been finished. Example: We had completed our basketball match before she had come.       

Past Perfect Continuous: This kind of past tense verb is used to show an event, action or incidence that started before another event, action or occurrence in the past. We can say that one action or event interrupted another. Example: I had been playing guitar since school time.

Interesting …Yes, it is very simple to learn tenses and then use them …Please go through our Part 2 in which we will be covering the remaining part.

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