Easy Learning

Tense - Easy Learning Grammar

Time reference

Verb forms help us make time reference through their tense. Tense shows whether an action or a state took place in the past or takes place in the present.
  • Jessica works in the post office.
  • Laurence worked in the post office over the Christmas holidays.
There are two simple tenses and six compound tenses.

Simple tenses

The simple tenses consist of a single word.There is a present simple tense
I likeI live
you likeyou live
he likeshe lives
and a past simple tense.
I likedI lived
you likedyou lived
he likedhe lived

The simple tenses of regular verbs

The present tense is the same as the base form of the verb, except that an -s is added to the verb when it has a noun or he, she, or it as a subject. This is called the 3rd person singular form.
  • he/she/it likes
  • he/she/it lives
The past tense of a regular verb is made from the base form of the verb with -ed (or -d if the verb already ends in -e) added. The spelling is the same for all persons.
I likedI lived
you likedyou lived
he likedhe lived

The simple tenses of irregular verbs

Most irregular verbs make the present tense from the base form of the verb just as regular verbs do.
I findI go
you findyou go
he/she/it findshe/she/it goes
  • Irregular verbs make the past tense in a number of different ways. Sometimes the past tense is a completely different word. See Irregular verbs for more on irregular verbs.
I foundI went
you foundyou went
he/she/it foundhe/she/it went

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