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June 22, 2016

Common Errors in English Usage with Explanations (Tenses) - Part 14

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    1. Did he went yesterday ? (wrong)
    2. Did he go yesterday ?   (correct)
      • Explanation : In an interrogative sentence, the tense is carried by the auxiliary verb (i.e. do in the sentence).
    1. Did you forgot what I asked you to bring ? (wrong)
    2. Did you forget what I had asked you to bring ?   (correct)
      • Explanation : There are two points here. Since 'did' carries the tense, the verb will be in the present form. Secondly, the content of the second sentence precedes the first, so it should be in the past perfect.
    1. No sooner did she comes that the boys stood up. (wrong)
    2. No sooner did she come that the boys stood up.   (correct)
      • Explanation : Since there is no tense agreement in the past tense, the expression is 'did she come'.
    1. He was borne with a silver spoon in his mouth. (wrong)
    2. He was born with a silver spoon in his mouth.   (correct)
      • Explanation : To be born refers to one's birth, e.g., he was born in 1935, but borne is the past participle of born in all other senses (e.g. the findings have been borne out).
    1. Neither did my aunt came nor did she sent any gift.  (wrong)
    2. Neither did my aunt come nor did she send any gift.    (correct)
      • Explanation : As the auxiliary did carries the past tense in both the clauses, the main verb should be in the present tense form.
    1. While she was walking in the garden, a dog bite her.  (wrong)
    2. While she was walking in the garden, a dog bit her.    (correct)
      • Explanation : The past tense of bite is bit and the event refers to the past. 
    1. I wish I was a pilot.  (wrong)
    2. I wish I were a pilot   (correct)
      • Explanation : With wish, the verb of the embedded clause has a subjunctive form, (e.g. were in all cases).
    1. I found the book laid on the bed.  (wrong)
    2. I found the book lying on the bed.    (correct)
      • Explanation : The verb lie (i.e., to rest flat on the surface) has lay as the past tense and lain in the past participle. It has laying in the present participle. The verb lay (i.e. to put something down gently) has laid in the past and laying in the present participle form. The context demands laying, not laid.
    1. He behaves as if he was the richest man on this earth.  (wrong)
    2. He behaves as if he were the richest man on this earth.    (correct)
      • Explanation : The embedded clause needs a subjunctive form; i.e., the verb should be were, and not was. 
Shared by Bhargav Gupta Yechuri
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