Computer should had been done last Saturday?

DistillingEnglish

Member
Portuguese
Hello,

I would like to know the correct answer to someone asking about a computer in the following scenario. A computer is under repairing and the Secretary, which I told about it asked on Monday "When the computer will be ready?". I said, "It should had been done by last Saturday." As it should be, my answer sounded totally wrong. I would like to know the correct way. However, I based my answer on the past perfect rule, which says that should be used when there is an action in the past happening before other action also in the past. Now, while writing it, I saw there is only one action occurring in the past, so my answer probably should be based in the simple past rule, but I am not sure how to elaborate it.


Thanks and best regards,

Nato.
 
Last edited:
  • PaulQ

    Senior Member
    UK
    English - England
    Should is never followed by the past perfect. "It should had been done by last Saturday." :cross:
    You should have used the present perfect -> "It should have been done by last Saturday." :tick:
     

    DistillingEnglish

    Member
    Portuguese
    Thanks a lot for your answer. However, I don't understand why I should use present perfect in this case, since I am talking about something that has already finished in the past.
     

    PaulQ

    Senior Member
    UK
    English - England
    But it has not been done. ""When the computer will be ready?". I said, "It should have been done by last Saturday." -> it wasn't done, was it?
     

    lucas-sp

    Senior Member
    English - Californian
    Thanks a lot for your answer. However, I don't understand why I should use present perfect in this case, since I am talking about something that has already finished in the past.
    It's not the present perfect. It's the modal verb "should" combined with the past infinitive (passive form) "to have been done."
     

    DistillingEnglish

    Member
    Portuguese
    It's not the present perfect. It's the modal verb "should" combined with the past infinitive (passive form) "to have been done."
    There is no "to" in the sentence "It should have been done by last Saturday.". Thus, it is not a past infinitive, unless you have a compelling reason showing me I am wrong. I do understand the modal verb changes how the present perfect should be used, since it's an action that supposed to happen in the past, but actually didn't happen. That's tricky. If I didn't use the modal verb, present perfect wouldn't apply here, I believe, but that would be an entire different context though.
     

    PaulQ

    Senior Member
    UK
    English - England
    There is no "to" in the sentence "It should have been done by last Saturday.". Thus, it is not a past infinitive, unless you have a compelling reason showing me I am wrong.
    The infinite has 2 forms: the full infinitive = to verb, and the bare infinitive = verb. Is that sufficiently compelling?

    e.g.
    I intend to go home. = Full infinitive.
    He must go home. = Bare infinitive.
     

    DistillingEnglish

    Member
    Portuguese
    The infinite has 2 forms: the full infinitive = to verb, and the bare infinitive = verb. Is that sufficiently compelling?

    e.g.
    I intend to go home. = Full infinitive.
    He must go home. = Bare infinitive.
    Bare infinitive! One of those grammar rules I use everyday, but have never heard it had a definition for. Thanks a lot.
     
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