I've ever or I ever made / seen etc


New Member
Hi. I want to ask about this sentences, in which are the present perfect used. I really don't get it ...

I've heard/seen both of these sentences a lot and I don't know which is right or wrong. I would normally say, that I always have to use "I've ever made" and the sentence "I ever made" isn't correct. But I've heard both of these sentences by english native speakers.

I ever made
I've ever made

I ever seen
I've ever seen

Or this is even a better example. It's from Steve Jobs' speech:
I never graduated from college. Truth be told, this is the closest I've ever gotten to a college graduation.

Why he didn't say : I've never graduated ... I ever gotten to a college graduation ?

  • Florentia52

    Modwoman in the attic
    English - United States
    "I ever made," "I've ever made," and "I've ever seen" are not sentences. They are phrases that could be grammatically correct in the right sentence.

    "I ever seen" is not a sentence, either, but it can not be used correctly in a sentence.

    In the quote from Steve Jobs, the difference between the simple past and the present perfect lies in whether the situation is entirely in the past, or whether it might change in the future. He said "I never graduated from college," which means he did not do so and had no plans ever to do so. "I've never graduated..." would also have been grammatically correct but would have changed the meaning slightly.

    In "the closest I've ever gotten," he used the present perfect because the event in question was happening at the time he was speaking, and because the situation might change in the future.

    "I ever gotten" is not grammatically correct.

    Miss Julie

    Senior Member
    Hi, Daniel. Your examples from a Steve Jobs speech are the only ones that are actually sentences. The ones above them are merely phrases.

    To answer your question:

    He said "I never graduated from college" because he never planned to go to college again, so there would be no more opportunity for him to graduate.

    He said "this is the closest I've ever gotten to a college graduation" because he thought he might have another experience that would be even closer to a college graduation.


    New Member
    Thank you so much for your answers, Florentia52 and Miss Julie! Now I really get it and it looks so simply . Thanks :)
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