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Past Tense

Past Tense

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  • 1. Past Tense 过去时
  • 2. Content Past Tense Simple Past Past Progressive Past Perfective Past Perfective Progressive 时态的比较
  • 3.  
  • 4. Use of Simple Past
    • The simple past is the past tense form which is not marked for the progressive or the perfective aspect. This tense form can be used to denote the following meanings:
    • 一般过去时 是未与进行体或完成体相结合的过去时形式,可用于:
  • 5. Use of Simple Past
    • 1. Past event and past habit 表示过去时间,过去的习惯动作
    • The basic use of the simple past is to denote a single event or state that happened or existed at a definite point or period of time in the past. This is what we call the event/state past.
    • 一般过去时主要用来表示在特定过去时间中一次完成的动作或一度存在的状态。
    • He left ten minutes ago.
    • This town was once a beauty spot.
  • 6. Use of Simple Past
    • The simple past can also be used to denote a habitual or recurrent action in the past , known as the habitual past
    • 也可表示 过去的习惯动作 。
    • In those days they sowed wheat by hand.
    • He worked in a bank all his life.
  • 7. Use of Simple Past
    • Neither the event / state past nor the habitual past has any connection with the present moment, so what is denoted by the simple past must be something no longer existent at the moment of speaking.
    • 一般过去时所表示的过去时间都与现在时间不发生关系。因此,用一般过去时表示的动作或状态都已成为过去,现已不复存在。 Compare:
    • His father was an English teacher all his life. (“He is now dead”)
    • His father has been an English teacher all his life. (“He is still alive.”)
  • 8. Use of Simple Past
    • 2. Attitudinal and hypothetical past 表示现在时间和将来时间
    • In specific context, the simple past can also denote the present or the future time.
    • 一般过去时还可用在特定句型中表示现在时间和将来时间。
    • There are two uses.
  • 9. Use of Simple Past
    • One is known as the attitudinal past , that is, the past tense is associated with the present time in independent clauses expressing a question, request or suggestion. Its effect is to make the question / request / suggestion less direct, implying a polite, somewhat tentative attitude on the part of the speaker.
    • 第一种情况是表示 婉转口气 。
    • A: Did you want me?
    • B: Yes, I wondered if you could give me some help.
    • 上述句子也能用于一般现在时表示,但口气不如用一般过去时婉转。这一用法只限于 want, wonder, think, hope 等少数几个动词。
  • 10. Use of Simple Past
    • The other is what we call the hypothetical past. In this use, the simple past refers not to a fact but to a non-fact, and is typically found in that-clause, following such construction as “It’s time…”, “I wish…”, “I’d rather…”, etc, and in adverbial clauses of rejected condition, ie a condition which is not likely to be fulfilled.
    • 第二种情况是在 It’s time…, I wish…, I’d rather … 等结构后面的 -that 分句中,以及在某些条件句中,表示主观设想 。
    • eg: It’s time you had a holiday.
    • I wish you lived closer to us.
    • If only he didn’t drive so fast!
    • 上述三例表示与现在事实相反的主观设想。
  • 11.  
  • 12. Use of Past Progressive
    • The use of past progressive (was / were + -ing participle) has much in common with that of the present progressive, only the time reference being pushed back to the past, often overtly expressed by a time- when adverbial. The following are the uses of the past progressive:
    • 过去进行体 是由助动词 be 的过去时形式 (was, were) 加 -ing 分词构成。过去进行体的用法与现在进行体的用法有不少相似之处,只是时间向过去推移而已。过去进行体可用于:
  • 13. Use of Past Progressive
    • 1. To denote an action in progress at a definite point of period of past time.
    • 表示过去某时正在进行的动作
    • This is the most common use of the past progressive. In this use, the past time reference is usually indicated by a temporal adverbial or implied by the context. In the past progressive, the notion of incompleteness is more clearly indicated than in the present progressive.
    • 过去进行体作这一用法时,通常也都要把时间状语表示出来,或者通过上下文把时间关系暗示出来。 这种时间状语可以表示过去某一时刻或某一阶段正在进行的动作 。如:
  • 14. Use of Past Progressive
    • What were you doing yesterday at seven p.m?
    • They were building a dam last winter.
    • It is based on this use that the past progressive may have the effect of surrounding a particular event by a temporal frame, or serve, at the beginning of a text, as the background in past time narrative.
    • 基于过去进行体的上述用法,人们常在口语中和记叙文中首先用过去进行体表示某种正在进行的动作为背景,并由此引出用一般过去时表示的新的事态或情结。 如:
    • I was talking to the librarian this morning, and he said we had to return all the reference books before Saturday.
    • The students were still laughing when the teacher stepped in.
  • 15. Use of Past Progressive
    • A thirsty Ant was climbing down a blade of grass that grew beside a spring. She was trying to reach the water so she could take a drink. Unluckily she slipped and fell into the spring.
    • Now a Dove was sitting on a branch over the water. She saw the Ant fall in and was filled with pity. Quick as a wink she pulled off a leaf and let if fall into the spring. The little raft settled down on the water right beside the drowning Ant. The Ant climbed on the leaf and was soon safe on shore again.
    • But what did she see? Hidden behind a bush, a hunter was spreading his net. He was going to catch the Dove. “No!” the grateful Ant said. “You shall not take the bird that saved my life!” And with all her might she bit the hunter on his bare foot. With a cry the hunter dropped his net, and the Dove flew away to the wood. One good turn deserves another.
  • 16. Use of Past Progressive
    • 2. To denote a past habitual action
    • 表示过去某种习惯动作
    • The habitual action denoted by the past progressive is most clearly characterized by its temporariness, in contrast with the past habit denoted by the simple past.
    • 过去进行体所表示的习惯动作通常是指过去 某一阶段暂时性的习惯 。如:
    • George was getting up at five every day that week.
    • 这句话的含义是, George 平时起得没那么早,只是在那一周中,他每天五时起床。
  • 17. Use of Past Progressive
    • As in the case of the present progressive, the past progressive can also collocate with such adverbials of frequency as always, constantly, continually, for ever , to express emotional feelings, especially feelings of annoyance or disapproval on the part of the speaker.
    • 过去进行体也可与 always, constantly, continually, for ever 等状语连用表示感情色彩 。如:
    • My brother was always losing his keys.
    • Alice was constantly changing her clothes.
    • 过去进行体的这种用法,和现在进行体的相应用法一样,通常表示说话人对某种行为的厌烦等不满情绪。当然,用在上述结构中的频度状语也有仅起强调作用,而不带感情色彩。如:
    • I remember my grandfather was always smoking a cigar.
  • 18. Use of Past Progressive
    • 3. To denote futurity in the past
    • 表示过去将来时间里的动作
    • In specific contexts, the past progressive can be used to denote a future action in the past according to a definite plan or arrangement.
    • 过去进行体在一定上下文中也可表示按照计划安排即将发生的过去将来事态 。如 :
    • They were leaving a few days later.
    • The summer vacation was drawing near, but nobody knew where they were going for the holiday.
  • 19. Use of Past Progressive
    • This use is also found in some adverbial clauses of time or condition.
    • 过去进行体用在某些时间状语和条件状语分句中还可表示过去将来时间正在进行的动作。
    • He promised not to mention this when he was talking to her.
    • He told me to wake him up if he was sleeping .
  • 20. Use of Past Progressive
    • 4. To make polite requests and express hypothetical meanings
    • 表示现在时间和将来时间里的动作
    • The past progressive has a similar function to that of the simple past and of the present progressive. Of the three forms, the past progressive is the most tentative in making polite requests.
    • 过去进行体的这种用法是为了表示婉转口气以及表示某种臆想的、非真实的情况 。
  • 21. Use of Past Progressive
    • 1) To express polite requests 表示婉转口气
    • 用过去进行体表示婉转口气只限于 hope, want, wonder 等动词,主要用来表示有礼貌的请求。如:
    • I was wondering / wondered if you’d like to come out with me one evening.
    • I was hoping / hoped you could send me some books.
    • 在这里,用一般过去时也是表示客气的请求,但用过去进行体更加婉转,更加有礼貌。 Compare:
    • I hope you can send me some books.
    • I hoped you could send me some books.
    • I am hoping you can send me some books.
    • I was hoping you could send me some books
    • 以上四例只有婉转程度的区别,而没有时间关系的差异。这四种动词形式都表示现在的请求。
  • 22. Use of Past Progressive
    • 2) To express hypothetical meanings 表示主观臆想的情况
    • To express hypothetical meanings, the past progressive only
    • Occurs in certain conditional clauses and in subclauses after “I wish”, “I’d rather”, “it’s time”, etc.
    • 过去进行体这一用法仅限于某些固定结构。如:
    • I wish ( 但愿 ) they were not talking so loudly. ( 表现在 )
    • I’d rather ( 宁可 ) you were going at once. ( 表将来 )
    • Would you stay a little longer, if you were enjoying yourself? ( 表将来 )
    • If they were leaving tonight, I’d like to go with them. ( 表将来 )
    • It is time we were leaving . ( 表现在 )
  • 23. Use of Past Progressive
    • 过去进行体的这一用法通常可与一般过去时交换使用,意义没有区别。如:
    • I wish we were going / went .
    • It’s time we were leaving / left .
  • 24. Use of Past Progressive
    • 5. Contrast between past progressive and simple past
    • 过去进行体与一般过去时的用法比较
    • a) To denote an action in completion, we use the simple past; to denote an action in progress, we use the past progressive.
    • 表示已完成的动作用一般过去时,表示未完成的动作用过去进行体。
    • I was reading a novel yesterday. ( 未读完 )
    • I read a novel yesterday. ( 已读完 )
  • 25. Use of Past Progressive
    • b) To state a mere past fact, we use simple past; to lay emphasis on the duration of the action, we use the past progressive.
    • 一般过去时通常只说明过去某时发生某事,而过去进行体则侧重动作的持续时间,而不仅是说明事实。 如:
    • It rained / was raining all night.
    • He worked / was working all through the night.
    • 在上述两例中,用一般过去时和过去进行体都可以,意义无甚差别,只是过去进行体更加突出时间持续之久。
  • 26. Use of Past Progressive
    • c) When two actions co-occur in a sentence, the action of shorter duration is to be denoted by the simple past, while that of longer duration by the past progressive.
    • 当一般过去时与过去进行体同时出现在句中时,通常是表示较短的 动作用一般过去时,表示较长的动作用过去进行体。 如:
    • While I was dictating a letter to my secretary, my wife rang .
    • I broke a glass while I was cooking the dinner.
    • I was running downstairs when I slipped and fell .
  • 27. Use of Past Progressive
    • d) In colloquial speech, the past progressive is sometimes used to show what one says is casual, unimportant and aimless, whereas the use of the simple past means differently.
    • 在口语中,说话人表示所谈内容是随便的,非故意的,或者无一定目的性,常用过去进行体。 如:
    • I was talking to Margaret the other day.
    • I was hearing John had got a new job.
    • 上述两例也可该用一般过去时,比如 I talked to Margaret the other day, 但给人的印象是我主动找她谈了话,与原句含义略有出入。
  • 28. Use of Past Progressive
    • e) Compare the time sequence of the two actions in the following sentences:
    • 由一般过去时和过去进行体表示的动作的时间顺序 ,比较:
    • When we arrived , she was making some fresh coffee.
    • When we arrived , she made some fresh coffee.
    • 前一例表示到达时她正在煮咖啡,后一例表示到达以后她才煮咖啡。后一例中的 when=after ,前后两个动作表示先后性,并非同时性,正因为如此,后一例也可以改为 When we had arrived she made some fresh coffee , 含义与原句相同。
  • 29.  
  • 30. Use of Past Perfective (Progressive)
    • 1. Past Perfective 过去完成体
    • The past perfective (had + -ed participle) also has two chief uses: “finished” use and “unfinished” use , only with time reference back-shifted to a specific past moment.
    • 过去完成体由 had+-ed 分词构成。它的主要用法同完成体一样也有两个,即 “已完成”和“未完成” 用法。不同的是,过去完成体把时间推移到过去某一时间之前,与现在时间不发生联系。
  • 31. Use of Past Perfective (Progressive)
    • In the “finished” use , the past perfective denotes an action or state already in completion before a specific past.
    • 过去完成体的“已完成”用法表示一个动作或状态在过去某时之前已经完成或结束。 如:
    • Tom flew home, but his father had already died .
    • I had written the article when they came.
    • He knew he had met her before.
  • 32. Use of Past Perfective (Progressive)
    • In its “unfinished” use , an action or state extending over a period up to a past moment and possibly into the future in the past.
    • 过去完成体的“未完成”用法表示一个动作或状态在过去某时之前已经开始,一直延续到这一过去时间,而且到那时还未结束,仍有继续下去的可能性。 如:
    • By six o’clock they had worked twelve hours.
    • She said that she had made much progress since she came here.
    • In 1960, I’ d known him for ten years; I met him for the first time in 1950.
  • 33. Use of Past Perfective (Progressive)
    • 2. Past Perfective Progressive 过去完成进行体
    • The past perfective progressive (had been+-ing participle) is basically similar in use to the present perfective progressive, only with time reference back-shifted to a specific past.
    • 过去完成进行体由 had been+-ing 分词构成。它的主要用法与现在进行体的用法相仿,只是时间推移到了过去。 如:
    • I’ d been working for some time when he called.
    • We had been waiting for her for two hours by the time she came.
    • I realized that I’ d been overworking , so I decided to take a couple of days’ holiday.
  • 34. Use of Past Perfective (Progressive)
    • The chief use of the past perfective progressive has also something in common with the “unfinished” use of the past perfective, and, therefore, in many cases, these two forms can be used interchangeably, though in colloquial speech, the past perfective progressive is more frequently used than the past perfective.
    • 有时过去完成进行体和过去完成体可以替换使用。在两者均可的情况下,口语中倾向于用过去完成进行体。
    • I’ d been working for three hours when he called.
    • I’ d worked for three hours when he called.
  • 35. Use of Past Perfective (Progressive)
    • 3. Past perfective in sentences with when- / before- / after- / until- clauses
    • 在由 when- / before- / after- / until- 等连词引导的分句中过去完成体的用法
    • Subordinators such as when, before, after, until can sometimes be used interchangeably when they connect clauses where two actions happen one after another.
    • When, before, after, until 等从属连词,在用于两个先后发生的事态时,往往可以互换使用。
    • When I reached the station, the train had already left.
    • I reached the station after the train had left.
    • I didn’t reach the station until after the train had left.
    • The train had left before I reached the station.
  • 36. Use of Past Perfective (Progressive)
    • The general rule is that the earlier happening is expressed by the past perfective and the later happening by the simple past.
    • 上述诸例中的两个先后动作,通常后一个动作用一般过去时表示,前一个动作用过去完成体表示。由于连词 before 和 after 本身已体现动作的先后性,所以也能用两个一般过去时。
    • The train ( had ) left before I reached the station.
    • After the teacher ( had ) left the room, the children started talking.
  • 37. Use of Past Perfective (Progressive)
    • Sometimes the past perfective is used in a before -clause to lay emphasis on the incompletion of the action:
    • 有时也可以在以 before 引导的时间状语分句中用过去完成体,以强调动作的未实现或未完成。 如:
    • He offered me a drink before I had taken off my coat.
    • He arrived before I had finished my lunch.
  • 38. Use of Past Perfective (Progressive)
    • Rarely can two past perfective forms co-occur in a sentence to show time sequence of two actions except for the kind of sentence comprising a clause introduced by the subordinator by the time. Even in this kind of clause, the simple past is more frequently used than the past perfective.
    • 能同时使用两个过去完成体的场合极少,下面带有由 by the time 引导的时间状语分句的句子是少数例外中的一个。
    • By the time I ( had ) recovered from the shock, he had disappeared .
    • 但多半还是一个用一般过去时,另一个用过去完成体。
    • We had got everything ready by the time they arrived .
    • By the time I got downstairs, the telephone had stopped ringing.
  • 39. Use of Past Perfective (Progressive)
    • 4. Imaginary use of past perfective 过去完成体的想象性用法
    • The past perfective when used to express hypothetical meanings is called the imaginary use of the past perfective.
    • 过去完成体用在某些结构中可表示与过去事态相反的主观设想
    • a) in clause introduced by if, if only, as if to denote a hypothetical condition, a wish not likely to be fulfilled or a state contrary to the past fact.
    • 用于由 if, if only, as if 引导的分句中:
    • If Bernard had walked faster, everything would have been all right.
    • I felt as if I had known her all my life.
  • 40. Use of Past Perfective (Progressive)
    • b) in that-clause following “I wish”. “I’d rather”, etc:
    • 用于 I wish, I’d rather 等结构后面的 that- 分句中
    • I wish I had said that I couldn’t come.
    • I would rather you had told her the truth.
    • c) In superordinate clauses where the past perfective is associated with such verbs as expect, think, intend, mean (=intend), want, suppose to denote a past wish or intention which was not realized.
    • 用于 expect, think, intend, mean (=intend), want, suppose 等动词表示过去未曾实现的希望、打算或意图。
    • I had intended to make a cake, but I ran out of time.
  • 41. 一般现在时与现在进行时
    • ( 1 )一般现在时用以说明客观事实,或用于强调动作的永久性、经常或反复性。而现在进行时强调动作正在进行,因此它表示动作含有暂时性(即动作的持续时间是有限的)和未完成性。
    • The writer writes children’s stories. 那位作家是写儿童小说的。(说明客观事实)
    • The writer is now writing a story. 那位作家现在正在编写一个故事。
    • She is kind. 她很善良。(指她一贯心地善良)
    • She is being kind. 她现在显得很善良。(表示暂时性,平时她并不善良)
    • Tom types his own letters. 汤姆自己用打印机打信。(说明经常性)
    • Tom is typing his own letters today. 汤姆今天自己正在用打印机打信(表示暂时性、未完成)
  • 42.
    • ( 2 )有些动词,如: like, hate, believe, guess, know, mean, remember, hear, see, sound, seem 等,不能用于进行时,即使表示说话时正在进行的动作也通常用一般现在时。如:
    • I know him. 我认识他。(不说: I am knowing him. )
    • Jenny likes this green coat. 珍妮喜欢这件绿大衣。(不说: Jenny is liking… )
    • 某些动词既可用于一般现在时,又可用于现在进行时,但意义有所不同。 试比较:
    • I feel (=think, believe) you are right/there’s something wrong. 我觉得( = 认为、相信)你是对的 / 有点不对头。(这个意思不用进行时 )
    • I’m feeling cold. 我觉得冷。
    • What are you thinking about? 你在想些什么。
  • 43.
    • What do you think of the idea? 你认为这个主意怎样?
    • I think you’re right. 我认为你是正确的。
    • He is smelling the meat. 他正在闻肉。
    • The meat smells bad. 这肉有臭味了。
    • I see (=understand) what you mean. 我明白你的意思。
    • I see the fish now. 我看见那条鱼了。
    • I’m seeing (=consulting ) a doctor. 我正在看医生(即看病)。
    • I’m seeing (=visiting) a friend of mine. 我正在看一个朋友。
  • 44.
    • 某些表示身体感觉的词(如 hurt, ache, feel 等),用一般现在时和现在进行时没有多大差别,只是进行时更生动、更有感情色彩。 例如:
    • How do you feel today? (or: How are you feeling today?) 你今天的感觉怎样。
    • My head is aching. (or: My head aches.) 我头疼。
    • I feel cold.=I’m feeling cold. 我觉得冷。
  • 45. 一般过去时与现在完成时
    • ( 1 )一般过去时只是单纯说明过去的情况,和现在不发生联系,它可以确定的表示过去的时间状语连用。而现在完成时表示某一完成的动作对现在造成的影响或结果,强调的是现在的情况,所以它不能和具体的表示过去的时间状语连用。如:
    • We have visited a power station. 我们参观了发电站。(现在对电站有所了解)
    • We visited a power station last week. 上周我们参观了发电站。(只说明事实)
    • I have lost my pen. 我把钢笔丢了。(还没有找到)
    • She lost her pen yesterday. 她昨天把钢笔丢了。(现在找到与否,没有说明)
  • 46.
    • ( 2 )有些时间状语,如 this morning, tonight, this month 等,既可以用于一般过去时,也可以用于完成时,但所表达的意义有所不同。用于现在完成时表示包括“现在 ”而用于一般过去时则与“现在”无关。 例如:
    • I have read this book this April. 我今年四月份看过这本书。(讲话时仍是四月)
    • I read this book this April. 我今年四月份看过这本书。(讲话时四月已过)
    • I have written two letters this morning. 今天上午我写了两封信。(讲话时仍是上午)
    • I wrote two letters this morning. 今天上午我写了两封信。(讲话时是下午或晚上)
  • 47. 一般过去时与过去进行时
    • 一般过去时表示过去发生的事情,往往表示动作已结束;而过去进行时侧重动作正在进行、未完成。试比较:
    • Mary wrote a letter to her friend last night. 玛丽昨晚给她的朋友写了封信。(信写完了)
    • Mary was writing a letter to her friend last night. 玛丽昨晚在给她的朋友写信。(信不一定写完)
    • I read a novel last night. 昨天晚上我看了一本小说。(指已经看完了)
    • I was reading a novel last night. 昨天晚上我在看小说。(指看了一些)
    • I often went swimming while I was living in Qingdao. 我住在青岛的时候经常去游泳。
    • I was running downstairs when I saw her. 我正往楼下跑的时候看见了她。
    • I ran downstairs and found her gone. 我跑下楼梯,发现她走了。
  • 48. 一般过去时和过去完成时
    • ( 1 )一般过去时表示过去发生的动作或存在的状态,而过去完成时表示在过去某一动作发生在另一动作之前。试比较:
    • The class had already begun when I came to school. 我来到学校时,已经开始上课。
    • He had gone home before I got to his office. 我到他办公室以前,他已回家了。
    • ( 2 )有 after 或 before 引导的时间状语从句的复合句中,由于从句动作和主句动作发生的先后顺序已经非常明确,所以可以用一般过去时代替过去完成时:
    • He called on me soon after he had returned. 他回来不久便拜访我。也可以说: He called on me soon after he returned.
    • The train had left before I got to the station. 我到车站时 , 火车已经开走了。也可以说: The train left before I got to the station 。
  • 49.
    • ( 3 )描述一连串的过去动作,无需用过去完成时,例如:
    • He stood up, took his bag, put on his hat, left the room and went away. 他站起来,拿起书包,戴上帽子,离开房间走了。
    • She looked around but saw nothing. 她环顾四周,但是什么也没有看见。
    • He came in and said hello to everyone. 他进来向每一个人问好。
    • 由于汉语与英语表达时态的方式不同,中国人在学习和应用英语时经常犯时态错误,尤其是在写信、写电子邮件、写记叙文时。常见的时态错误类型有:时态不对应;通篇须用几种时态时用一种时态;时态混用或串用(如在描写过去的经历时,有时用现在时);不用进行时。我们如果在日常口头交际中犯点时态错误,这在所难免,也可以理解。但是,在正式场合,如正式写作中,就不能允许出现时态错误,因为这是英语语法的基础。我们学习时态的目的,主要在于应用。因此,在使用英语,尤其是在写作时,一定要有时态意识,长此以往就能养成正确使用时态的习惯。