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  • Hi, Sian here for BBC Learning English. Today we're going to look at past forms - easy right?

  • We use past forms to talk about things that happened in the past?

  • Well, it's not that simple! We also use past forms when we're not talking about past.

  • Here are a few ways we do this.

  • Number 1: Listen to these two examples. Which one do you think my plan sounds less definite?

  • Number 1: I'm thinking of going to that party later. Or, number 2: I was thinking of going

  • to that party later. That's right. The second one is less definite.

  • We use past here - I was thinking - to show that the plan isn't certain yet.

  • I haven't made up my mind.

  • Number 2: Listen to these two examples. Which one sounds more polite? 1. Is your report ready yet?

  • Or 2, I was wondering if your report was ready yet.

  • The second one, of course, is much more polite. We use past forms here - was wondering/was

  • - to make the request less direct and more formal. You'll be surprised how often British

  • people use this structure - we like being polite!

  • Number 3: Which of these two examples sound more urgent?

  • It's time to leave. Or It's time we left.

  • That's right - the second one sounds more urgent. The first example just means 'we should

  • leave now': It's time to leave - the party starts in 20 minutes!

  • The second example, we use the past form. This conveys the idea that we should have

  • already left! It's time we left - the party started hours ago.

  • Number 4: Which of these do you think sounds correct? I wish I have more time. Or, I wish I had

  • more time. That's right. The first one is not possible.

  • To make wishes about the present we use the past form - I wish I had more time. We're

  • not talking about the past here, we're talking about an unreal present situation. You could

  • also use if only. If only I had more time.

  • Number 5: Which of these two examples sound less likely to happen?

  • Suppose you lose your job. Or,

  • Suppose you lost your job. That's right. The second one sounds less likely

  • to happen. We use the past after suppose or what if when we don't think something is likely

  • to happen in the future.

  • That's it for this Masterclass. For more help with using past forms when you're not

  • talking about the past, go to our website bbclearningenglish.com.

  • Goodbye!

Hi, Sian here for BBC Learning English. Today we're going to look at past forms - easy right?

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A2 初級

文法:什麼時候不是過去?- BBC英語大師班 (Grammar: When is the past not the past? - BBC English Masterclass)

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    林宜悉 發佈於 2021 年 01 月 14 日
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