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FUTURE (PERFECT) IN THE PAST

-       used a lot in narrations of past events

When we talk about the past, we sometimes want to refer to something which was in the future at the time we were speaking. Even though we want to talk about the future, we use past verb forms:

 

WAS/WERE GOING TO

The last time we talked, Mary was going to a job interview the following day.

(past form of Mary is going to…)

 

Carol apologized she was going to visit us, but her car had a flat tyre.

(past form of She is going to visit us..)

 

I was just going to cross the street when a car crashed into another one next to me.

(past form of I am just going to…)

 

 

WOULD

They called to let us know they would not be joining us for the trip.

(past form of will – they will not be joining us)


Last year, I knew I would finish my story by now.


My grandma promise that she would bake her signature quark pie for me.

 

Most of Marleen’s family was killed during the war. Because of the trauma Marleen would not return back to her country until 20 years later.

 

Exercises:

 

FUTURE PERFECT IN THE PAST

 

-      also known as the conditional perfect

-      is used to describe an action that was expected to be completed before a specific point in the past

 

By the time we arrived, they were going to have already left.

Last week, Laura said she would have finished her report by now.

I was sure that by 3 o’clock the latest, the package would have been delivered.

We were certain she was going to have passed all the exams by the end of January.


Exercises:

 

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