sequence of tenses

Ivan_I

Senior Member
Russian
Which sequence of tenses is the better?

1 Since recently I have been feeling dizzy for 2 minutes after I have been doing this exercise for 5 minutes.
or
2 Since recently I have been feeling dizzy for 2 minutes after I do this exercise for 5 minutes.
 
  • lingobingo

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Since recently sounds very odd to me. The word since is not needed. And it would be much more natural to just say “after doing [this exercise]” – or, better still, “every time I do this exercise for five minutes”.

    And the sequence of tenses is the same in both your sentences. The only difference is the addition of the progressive aspect.
     

    Ivan_I

    Senior Member
    Russian
    I see. For one thing, why are you saying that the sequence of tenses is the same?
    1 Present Perfect Continuous + Present Perfect Continuous
    2 Present Perfect Continuous + Present Simple
     

    london calling

    Senior Member
    UK English
    Neither sentence sounds English and of course we can't re-write them. And I agree with what LB says above.

    I would just like to add that if I did re-write them I wouldn't use a progressive tense at all.
     

    lingobingo

    Senior Member
    English - England
    why are you saying that the sequence of tenses is the same?
    1 Present Perfect Continuous + Present Perfect Continuous
    2 Present Perfect Continuous + Present Simple
    Using a different sequence means putting things in a different order. Here, you’ve used different forms of verbs in the same tense — the present tense.
     

    Andrei Komarov

    New Member
    Russian
    Good afternoon, dear English language native speakers! Today I'm very slow on the uptake, as I've had some difficulties with two sentences mainly of English language theoretical essence.

    1) "I started (to start) learning English at school in Switzerland when I was eleven*, so I have been learning (to learn) it nearly for ten years."
    According of the keys (and I quite agree with them) the underlined grammar forms are the right answers here. But in this case I have some doubts concerning the second part of this sentence. The independent or principal clause in the sentence is "I started learning English at school in Switzerland", so all the the parts of this very sentence should follow the rules of the sequence of tenses. In this case why do we put "so I have been learning it nearly for ten years" here? Of course, while taking independently, we can't but point out the special grammar indicators of Present Perfect Continuous, "showing" us that the process of learning English is still in progress, - "for ten years". But what about the first and main part of the sentence that is written in Past Simple? In this case is the part "so I have been learning it nearly for ten years" - an adverbial clause or result, or there is some other type of subordination?
    * I don't take the adverbial clause of time "when I was eleven", because its grammar form has been written as a grammatical marker in full.

    2) The same problem I do have with the following sentence:
    "At first in London I didn't understand (not understand) anything, but now my English is/has constantly improving/improved (to improve)."
    I dare say, that here we come across the compound sentence that consists of two simple sentences (with the co-ordinating conjunction "but"), and that's why, here we can introduce any grammatical structure, that fits the logic of the compound sentence.

    I will certainly appreciate any help and your comments.
    Thank you beforehand for your help and time!
     

    DonnyB

    Sixties Mod
    English UK Southern Standard English
    1) "I started (to start) learning English at school in Switzerland when I was eleven*, so I have been learning (to learn) it nearly for ten years."
    According of the keys (and I quite agree with them) the underlined grammar forms are the right answers here. But in this case I have some doubts concerning the second part of this sentence. The independent or principal clause in the sentence is "I started learning English at school in Switzerland", so all the the parts of this very sentence should follow the rules of the sequence of tenses. In this case why do we put "so I have been learning it nearly for ten years" here? Of course, while taking independently, we can't but point out the special grammar indicators of Present Perfect Continuous, "showing" us that the process of learning English is still in progress, - "for ten years". But what about the first and main part of the sentence that is written in Past Simple?
    I'm not entirely sure I understand what you're asking here, but just looking at the tenses...
    "I started learning English at school in Switzerland when I was eleven"
    The simple past tense here is correct: it refers to a completed past event (starting to learn English at the age of eleven).

    "so I have been learning it nearly for ten years"
    The perfect continuous tense is also correct in this part: it's an elapsed period of time between then (ten years ago) and now.

    So what you need to do is connect the two halves together logically, to arrive at the conclusion that the person started learning English at the age of eleven, has spent the last ten years learning it and is (presumably) now aged 21. :)
     

    lingobingo

    Senior Member
    English - England
    1) I started learning English at school in Switzerland when I was eleven, so I have [now] been learning it for nearly ten years. :tick:
    2) At first in London I didn’t understand anything, but now my English is constantly improving. :tick:

    2) At first in London I didn’t understand anything, but now my English has constantly improved. :thumbsdown:
    2) At first in London I didn’t understand anything, but since then my English has constantly improved. :thumbsup:
    2) At first in London I didn’t understand anything, but now my English has improved. :thumbsup:
     
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