Continuing with our series on tenses, this High English quiz looks at the present perfect tense. The present perfect tense comprises two parts - the verb TO HAVE (either HAS or HAVE) in combination with a base verb in its past participle form. Look at these two sentences:
‘He has slept for four hours.’
‘We have attended his dinner.’
In both examples we see the verb TO HAVE (‘has’ and ‘have’) has been used along with the past participle of sleep (slept) and attend (attended).
Another form is the use of ‘has been’ or ‘have been’ as in the sentence ‘I have been elected to the Lok Sabha.’ In all the forms the negative form with the use of ‘not’ is also common.
Use of the present perfect tense is tricky because it has many variations. The most common use is to describe action that commenced in the past and continued until the present, as in the examples depicted above. The present perfect tense can also be used for describing actions that commenced in the past and may be repeated. For instance, in the following sentence:
‘I have seen that play three times so far.’
In this sentence an action is shown but the action could be repeated and this is because of the use of ‘so far’ in the sentence. Present perfect tense employs many time adverbs such as 'ever', 'already', 'still', 'yet', 'never' and 'just'. An example of such use can be seen from the sentence ‘I have never seen him before.’
The most common use of the present perfect tense is to show when action commenced or for how long, and in order to do this ‘since’ and ‘for’ are used as in these two sentences:
‘I have lived in Bangalore SINCE June, 1965.’
‘I have lived in Bangalore FOR 50 years.’
The present perfect tense is very common in written and spoken English and the quiz that follows takes you through some of the uses.