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 Form of the past simple

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تاريخ التسجيل : 25/02/2008

مُساهمةموضوع: Form of the past simple   الجمعة مارس 21, 2008 11:42 am

a. The verb To Be
The Simple Past of the verb to be is conjugated as follows:


I was
you were
he was
she was
it was
we were
they were


i. Questions and negative statements
The Simple Present and Simple Past of the verb to be do not use auxiliaries to form questions and negative statements. Instead, the verb itself is used.

The verb to be forms questions and negative statements in the same way in the Simple Past as in the Simple Present. In order to form a question, the verb is placed before the subject. For example:

Affirmative StatementQuestion
I was awake. Was I awake?
They were ready. Were they ready?
In order to form a negative statement, the word not is placed after the verb. For example:

Affirmative StatementNegative Statement
I was awake. I was not awake.
They were ready. They were not ready.
In spoken English, the following contractions are often used:

Without ContractionsWith Contractions
was not wasn't
were not weren't
In order to form a negative question, the verb is placed before the subject, and the word not is placed after the subject. However, when contractions are used, the contracted form of not immediately follows the verb. For example:

Without ContractionsWith Contractions
Was I not awake? Wasn't I awake?
Were they not ready? Weren't they ready?
In order to form tag questions, the verb itself is used. In the following examples, the negative tag questions are underlined. Contractions are usually used in negative tag questions.

Affirmative StatementAffirmative Statement with Tag Question
I was awake. I was awake, wasn't I?
They were ready. They were ready, weren't they?

b. Other verbs
English verbs other than the verb to be have the same form in the Simple Past, regardless of the subject.

In the case of regular English verbs, the Simple Past has the same form as the past participle. For example, the Simple Past of the regular verb to work is conjugated as follows:


I worked
you worked
he worked
she worked
it worked
we worked
they worked

In the case of irregular English verbs, the form of the Simple Past must be memorized. As illustrated by the examples below, for some irregular verbs, the Simple Past is the same as the past participle; whereas for others, the Simple Past differs from the past participle.

Bare InfinitiveSimple PastPast Participle
begin began begun
find found found
go went gone
let let let
take took taken
Like the regular verbs, irregular verbs other than the verb to be do not modify in the Simple Past, but have the same form, regardless of the subject. For example, the Simple Past of the irregular verb to take is conjugated as follows:



i. Questions and negative statements
In both the Simple Present and the Simple Past of verbs other than the verb to be, questions and negative statements are formed using the auxiliary to do and the bare infinitive.

For questions and negative statements in the Simple Past, the Simple Past of the auxiliary to do is used. The Simple Past of to do is conjugated as follows:


I did
you did
he did
she did
it did
we did
they did
In order to change an affirmative statement into a question, did is placed before the subject, and the form of the verb is changed from the Simple Past to the bare infinitive. In the following example, the regular verb to work is used. The verb to work has the Simple Past worked, and the bare infinitive work.


Affirmative StatementQuestion
I worked. Did I work?
You worked. Did you work?
He worked. Did he work?
She worked. Did she work?
It worked. Did it work?
We worked. Did we work?
They worked. Did they work?


In order to change an affirmative statement into a negative statement, did not is placed after the subject, and the form of the verb is changed to the bare infinitive. In the following example, the irregular verb to speak is used. The verb to speak has the bare infinitive speak and the Simple Past spoke.

Affirmative StatementNegative Statement
I spoke. I did not speak.
You spoke. You did not speak.
He spoke. He did not speak.
She spoke. She did not speak.
It spoke. It did not speak.
We spoke. We did not speak.
They spoke. They did not speak.


In spoken English, the following contraction is often used:

Without ContractionWith Contraction
did not didn't
In order to change an affirmative statement into a negative Question, did is placed before the subject, not is placed after the subject, and the form of the verb is changed to the bare infinitive. However, when contractions are used, the contracted form of not follows immediately after the auxiliary did. For example:

Without ContractionsWith Contractions
Did I not work? Didn't I work?
Did you not work? Didn't you work?
Did he not work? Didn't he work?
Did she not work? Didn't she work?
Did it not work? Didn't it work?
Did we not work? Didn't we work?
Did they not work? Didn't they work?
Tag questions are formed using the auxiliary did. In the following examples, the negative tag questions are underlined. Contractions are usually used in negative tag questions.

Affirmative StatementAffirmative Statement with Tag Question
I worked. I worked, didn't I?
You worked. You worked, didn't you?
He worked. He worked, didn't he?
She worked. She worked, didn't she?
It worked. It worked, didn't it?
We worked. We worked, didn't we?
They worked. They worked, didn't they?


3. The simple past of To Use followed by an infinitive
The Simple Past of the verb to use, followed by an infinitive, generally refers to something which took place repeatedly or continuously in the past, but which no longer takes place.

In the following examples, the Simple Past of to use is printed in bold type, and the infinitives which follow it are underlined. The Simple Past of to use is used.
e.g. The ferry used to operate every day.
We used to live in Mouamines.

In the first example, the use of used followed by the infinitive indicates that in the past the ferry operated every day, but now it does not operate every day. In the second example, the use of used followed by the infinitive indicates that in the past we lived i, Mouamines, but now we do not live in Mouamines.

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Form of the past simple
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