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Aspect/TensePastPresentFuture

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formverb 2verb 1will + verb 1, be going to + verb 1

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SimplefunctionAction in pastActions as schedules, habits, facts. Actions in future.Action in future

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exampleHe spoke.He speaks. He speaks next week.He will speak. He is going to speak.

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formhad + verb 3have/has + verb 3will have + verb 3

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PerfectfunctionAction completed in past before a time or action.With time expression, action started in past but not completed. Used without, action happened at an indefinite time in pastFuture action completed by a future time.

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exampleHe had already spoken when we arrived.He has spoken to audiences since high school. He has spoken to audiences.He will have spoken by this evening.

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formbe + verb-ingbe + verb-ingwill + be + verb-ing, be going to + be + verb-ing

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ProgressivefunctionAction started in past and continues through present. Action in future.Action in progress at a future time.

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exampleHe was speaking.He is speaking. He is speaking next week.He will be speaking. He is going to be speaking.

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formhad + been + verb-inghave/has + been + verb-ingwill + have + been + verb-ing

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Perfect ProgressivefunctionAction in progress before a time in past. Focuses on the continuous activity, not the end result. Might continue through that timeAction started in past but not completed.Action in progress at a future time. (Action could start in the past, present, or future.)

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exampleHe had been speaking when we arrived.He has been speaking for two hours.He will have been speaking for 30 minutes by then.