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    Learn English > English lessons and exercises > English test #109304: Tenses : satisfying the request... (2)
    > Other English exercises on the same topics: Tales | Past | Find the correct tense [Change theme]
    > Similar tests: - Past simple or present perfect - Past tenses - Past simple (video) - Modal : may/might - Past simple or continuous - Placement test 1 - Present simple and habits - Fairy tales and legends-Vocabulary
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    Tenses : satisfying the request... (2)

    1) The tense of a narration is always the simple past and an action which happened before this past will always be expressed in the past perfect :

    past perfect simple = Have + past participle   and  past perfect in -ing = have been + Verb + ing  (insisting on the action in progress and its duration.)

     ex : The client entered the old pharmacy. He had heard of a strange rumor concerning an undetectable poison you could get freely there. 


    2 ) If you want to use a future, remember that it doesn't get on well with the past  ! Yet, if you really need it, (or the conditional...) : BEWARE!

     after a subordinate conjunction expressing 'time': (after, before, when, while, once, as long as, as soon as, etc. the future is impossible: it is replaced by the present, and the conditional by the preterite.)

     ex : The pharmacist will listen carefully as soon as the client asks his unexpected question...

    Yet, 'when'  can be the interrogative pronoun (whether direct or indirect) ; then, it must be followed by the tense imposed by the context (future or conditional).

          ex : When will he answer my question? I really wonder when he will answer my question frankly...

          In order to make a difference between a subordinate conjunction expressing 'time' and an interrogative pronoun, it may be an idea to try to substitute 'when' for 'as soon as'.  If the sentence has a meaning, 'when' is a 'subordinate conjunction' and the sentence will not be in the future. 




        3) NUMERALS: A score ( = 20 in Old English), a dozen ( = 12), a hundred ( = 100), a thousand ( = 1000), a million ( = 1 000 000)  cannot be put in the plural when they are multiplied by a precise number ou are preceded by several,

        a few, many. 

        Actually, they are numerals (numeral adjectives), and like all adjectives, they are never in the plural. They are often followed by a noun.

        ex : Many hundred bottles were neatly lining on shelves from floor to ceiling.

        On the contrary, ten, score, dozen, hundred, thousand, million, billion can be put in the plural, when they are followed by 'of' and a noun. 

        These words are no longer adjectives and become nouns  connected to other nouns by the preposition 'of'! )

        ex : Dozens of paper bags and sachets were ready for delivery. 



      4) AS / LIKE / AS IF 

         a) LIKE + NOM  expresses a simple comparison. It's often used with the verb 'to look': to look like + noun = to be similar.

         ex : This shop looked like the cave of Arabian Nights! 

         b)  AS + PROPOSITION (Subject + verb) and  AS IF + PROPOSITION (as if + modal past  expressing an unreal.)

         ex : Do as I tell you!  He spoke as if he didn't understand what the man was saying ... 



    There we are! The lesson is finished... I hope you've understood and hope that you'll like the test! Go for it! 

    The story was freely inspired by The Hobbyist, by Fredric Brown. 1961 

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    (... continued...) You were given the poison in your coffee... If you don't have the antidote within 3 hours, you'll be dead...

    The client paler if he had been struck by lightning. He took out a pistol from his pocket and aimed at the pharmacist. 'If you kill me now, the right antidote among those ... The pharmacist explained: the antidote was , not too expensive for a life... he said: 'there's no reason why money preventing murders...' But to make sure you me afterwards, you will now write your confession of your former intention and I'll go and post it to working in the police... I'll take your pistol with me, too...
    As soon as , I'll give you the antidote. And of course, the stupid idea of killing your wife... and myself! With the $ 2,000 displayed in front of him, the client his confession... He had no choice! Don't forget to spread the news that I give an undetectable poison... your wife's life, it your own life too, you never know!
    This was how 'the biter was bitten!' ;0))

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