party was/has been a success

Discussion in 'English Only' started by wolfbm1, Dec 9, 2012.

  1. wolfbm1

    wolfbm1 Senior Member

    "I’m writing to thank you for the birthday gift you sent me. I like it very much.
    My birthday party ……………………. a great success. All of my friends were there. I regret that you couldn't be with me."

    I think that “was” fits best because the party is over and “has been” is probably not wrong because the memory of the party is still in my mind. Am I right?
  2. Loob

    Loob Senior Member

    English UK
    Hi wolf - here's my answer, given your context:
    My birthday party was a great success. :tick:
    My birthday party has been a great success. :cross:
  3. se16teddy

    se16teddy Senior Member

    London but from Yorkshire
    English - England
    If, from the point of view of the speaker, the party ended or is ending in the present, he or she will use the present perfect. As wolf suggests, the speaker may feel that the after-party buzz is part of the party, so in that sense the party may be continuing to the time of writing.
  4. wolfbm1

    wolfbm1 Senior Member

    Thank you, Loob and se16teddy. So the present perfect can be used provided that the "party spirit" is still present.

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