I already did that last Friday. Possible?

Discussion in 'English Only' started by Jan_australia, May 17, 2010.

  1. Jan_australia Member


    I'm wondering if you can say I already did that last Friday?

    The situation I am thinking about:

    John asks you: Have you already done your homework?

    Normally you would answer: I have done my homework. (you use the present perfect here because you don't want to say the exact time you did it, you want to stress the point that they were finished at a specific point in the past and are still finished now, right?)

    But what would you say if you want to make John jealous or something by proudly saying that you did it last Friday (today is Wednesday). Would you say:

    "I already did my homework last Friday." ?

    and by the way is "some days ago" a specific time you use with past simple like "2 days ago", "an hour ago", "one week ago" or yesterday, last week and so on? Or is it used as an unspecific time description with the present perfect?

    so: "I did it some days ago." or "I have done it some days ago." ??

    Thanks for any help :)
  2. Heather0812 New Member

    Reynoldsburg, Ohio
    I probably would not say "already." It sounds more natural to my ears to say "I did it last Friday." Usually I would use "some days ago" if I wasn't sure exactly how many days ago it was, or I didn't really feel like trying to figure it out. I probably wouldn't say "I have done it some days ago" but the first one sounds ok.
  3. Jan_australia Member

    But my description for "I have done my homework" is correct?
  4. preppie Senior Member

    Mid Atlantic, US
    American English (Mostly MidAtlantic)
    John would ask, "Have your done your homework already ?" If he knew you had completed it.
    He would ask "Have you done your homework yet?" if if was unsure if it were done or not.

    To the first (Have you done your homework yet?") you could answer
    "Yes I did."
    or "I did it already."

    It's past. It's complete and he can wonder when all he wants.

    I did it a while ago. I did it x days ago. I did it Friday (afternoon/night/ 7pm). all say: it's completed and when, from least to specific to more specific. And John can just rant all he wants because you're done !
  5. se16teddy

    se16teddy Senior Member

    London but from Yorkshire
    English - England
    Jan, I think American (including Canadian) English diverges from most of the rest of the world on the use of past tenses with time adverbs including just and already. Essentially, I think American English tends to use the simple past with those adverbs, but in Britain we use the present perfect. Which kind of English are you aiming at?
  6. JulianStuart

    JulianStuart Senior Member

    Sonoma County CA
    English (UK then US)
    If you want to brag about it and make John jealous, you could say

    "I did it days ago." or "I did it ages ago."

    Quite a common construction is when you would not be trying to specify the time but using a vague term and stressing it as you say it. The typical implication of such a construction and stress is "I did it so long ago I can't even remember how long ago it was". Definitely jocular in tone :D

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