In this lesson of English Grammar, we are going to learn What is Tense in English grammar, and we also see the different types of tenses with suitable examples. To download the PDF of this lesson please find the PDF downloadable link mentioned below of this article.
What is Tense?
It is defined as the form of a verb which indicates the time and the state of an action or event.
How many types of tenses are there?
There are three major types of tense:
Present indefinite or Simple present
Present continuous tense
Present perfect tense
Present perfect continuous tense
Simple past or past indefinite tense
Past continuous tense
Past perfect tense
Past perfect continuous tense
Future indefinite tense
Future continuous tense
Future perfect tense
Future perfect continuous tense
Let I show you in details the types of Tenses.
V1= BASE FORM OF VERB
V2= PAST SIMPLE
V3= PAST PARTICIPLE
What is Simple Present or Present Indefinite tense?
It denotes habitual action, custom, practice, repeated action, permanent/eternal, general truth etc.
Simple present or Present indefinite tense structure:
(SUBJECT + V1 + OBJECT)
The boy goes for a walk in the morning. Ayesha always comes in time.
The cow gives milk.
The sun rises in the East.
We use simple present or present indefinite tense when:
Babur now leads his man through the Khyber Pass.
Now Arjuna shoots arrows at Bhishma.
Near future without pre-planning.
He leaves Tokyo tonight.
He comes in a few days' time.
The school opens at 8 a.m. after the vacation.
He comes back from London tomorrow.
Habitual action or recurring action:
He takes exercise every day.
Ram goes to school
The earth moves around the sun.
Truth is power.
Facts of the present:
He is a good girl.
There is a temple.
Every day, usually, generally, normally, sometimes, every week, every year, etc.
When these words are present in a sentence and also follow the present indefinite sentence structure, you can easily identify that the tense of the sentence is simple present
What is Present Continuous tense?
It refers to an action in progress in the present at the time of speaking.
Present continuous tense sentence structure:
(SUBJECT + AM/ IS/ ARE + MAIN VERB + ING)
He is playing chess.
It is raining now.
It also expresses future action or a definite arrangement in the near future. For examples,
She is going to write a book
I am going to my father tomorrow
The following verbs for their meaning are not generally used in continuous form (present, past, future):
Verbs of perception:
Hear, see, smell, taste, etc.
Verbs of emotion or state of mind:
Love, hate, wish, Desire, hope, want, etc.
Verbs of appearance:
Appear, look, seem, etc.
Verbs denoting possession:
Own, have, belong, comprise, possess, etc
She is owning a car. (wrong ) - She owns a car (right)
I am having no house. (wrong) - I have no house. (right)
A continuous action of the present moment:
Now, still, at present, etc.
He is studying now.
Static verbs cannot be used in progressive action:
The glass contains water.
He owns a house.
The flower smells sweet.
I see he is a good boy.
The temple stands in the heart of the city.
Near future + planned action:
I am leaving for Dubai tonight.
We are going on a trip to Rajasthan this month.
NOTE: Do not use Present Continuous tense when the action is OFFICIAL.
What is Present Perfect tense?
The action is over but the result or effect is still continuing.
Present Perfect tense sentence structure:
(SUBJECT + HAS/HAVE + V3 + OBJECT)
Just, just now, yet, of late, lately, recently, already, etc.
I have just finished the walk.
She has already had her breakfast.
I have come to know about it lately (Adverb).
Of late (Prepositional Phrase), the number of literates increased.
What is Present Perfect Continuous tense?
A continuous action running for a certain period of time.
I have been reading this book since morning.
I have been reading this novel for seven hours.
We use since for staring time of the action.
And for, a total duration of the action.
Present Perfect Continuous tense structure:
(SUBJECT + HAVE/HAS + BEEN + V1 + ING + OBJECT)
'Since' is used only in present perfect continuous. It cannot use in Past or Future tenses, there we can use 'From' in place of 'Since'
If any static verb[External Link] is used in the structure of the present perfect continuous tense, the verb form changes into present perfect tense
He has been owing this house since 2005 (Wrong)
He has owned this house since 2005 (Right)
What is Simple Past tense or Past Indefinite?
Simple past tense is used to convey that the action is completely over or an indefinite action of the past.