IELTS Grammar: Past Perfect Tense vs Simple Past Tense

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Here are 2 sentences to explain the difference between Simple Past Tense and Past Perfect tense.

1. When I reached home, my wife cooked dinner.

2. When I reached home, my wife had cooked dinner.

Where is the Past Perfect tense used?

When you are talking about past and mention something that happened earlier.

Example: “When I reached home my mother had already left.’’

That is, the mother was gone before I reached home.

Similarly, “When I reached home my wife had cooked dinner.”

That is, wife had cooked cooking dinner before I reached home.

We use simple past tense if events move in chronological order.

Example: “When he was born his father started a business.”

That is, his father started the business after he was born.

Similarly, “When I reached home my wife cooked dinner.”

That is, my wife cooked dinner after I reached home.

Past Perfect Tense Exercise:

According to Dr. Ken Winkle, Australia’s Red-back spider is colonizing the world.

Dr. Winkle, a venom expert from the University of Melbourne, said that authorities 1………………(find) Red-back spiders in Japan and Belgium. They suspected that spider or their eggs 2……………… (enter) these countries along with Australian trading goods. Furthermore, it was extremely likely that the spiders 3…………………… (make) their way into other nations around the world but that people 4……………… (discover) them yet. Dr. Winkle said the spider 5……………..  (also/ turn up) in the port city of Osaka (which receives a variety of Australian trade goods) in the late 1990s and  6……………….(multiply) quickly. He said Australia spider experts were collaborating with Japanese officials to find a way to stop the venomous invader.

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Categories: Grammar

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