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Употребление Past Perfect Tense

1. Past Perfect употребляется для выражения прошедшего действия, которое уже совершилось до другого действия, имевшего место также в прошлом, или какого-то момента в прошлом. Past Perfect представляет собой «предпрошедшее» время, поскольку оно выражает прошедшее действие по отношению к моменту, также являющемуся прошедшим. Этот момент может быть определен:

а) такими обозначениями времени как by five o’clock к пяти часам, by Saturdayк субботе, by the 15th of December к 15 декабря, by the end of the yearк концу года, by that time к тому времени и т.п.

We had translated the article by five o’clock.

Мы уже перевели статью к 5 часам

By the end of the year he had learnt to speak French.

К концу года он научился говорить по-французски.

б) другим (более поздним) прошедшим действием, выраженным в Past Indefinite:

We sent him a telegram yesterday as we had not received any letters from him for a long time.

Мы послали ему вчера телеграмму, так как мы долго не получали от него писем.

Не had traveled much before he came to live in Moscow.

Он много путешествовал, прежде чем поселиться в Москве.

в) время или действие, до которого совершилось действие, выраженное в Past Perfect, может не быть указано в предложении с Past perfect, а упомянуто в другом предложении:

As I was going to the station, it began raining. Fortunately, I had taken an umbrella and had put on a coat.

Когда я шел на станцию, начался дождь. К счастью, я взял с собой зонтик и надел пальто.

2. Past Perfect может употребляется как в главных, так и в придаточных предложениях.

After what had happened I could not work quietly.

После того, что произошло я не могла работать спокойно.

They had shipped the goods when your telegram arrived.

Они уже отгрузили товары, когда прибыла ваша телеграмма.

3. Past Perfect употребляется в предложениях, когда имеется указание на другое внезапно наступившее действие. Глагол в этом случае употребляется в отрицательной форме либо в предложении имеются наречия hardly, scarcely, no sooner.
Соответствующие русские предложения обычно имеют построение: не прошли они и ... как ... , не успел он.... как ..., едва успел он ... как ..., (едва) только он вышел ... как ....

They had not walked two kilometers, when a thunderstorm broke out.

Не прошли они и 2 километров, как вдруг разразилась гроза.


Hardly had he taken the hammer, when he hurt his finger.

Не успел он взять в руки молоток, как расшиб себе палец.


4. Past Perfect не употребляется для выражения действий, которые следовали непосредственно одно за другим; в этом случае употребляется форма Past Indefinite:

He came home late in the evening. Он пришел домой поздно вечером.

He hadsupper, readthe newspaper and wentto bed. Он поужинал, прочитал газету и лег спать.

5. После when когда обычно употребляется Past Indefinite:

When the secretary received the telegram, he immediately showed it to the manager.

Когда секретарь получил телеграмму, он немедленно показал её управляющему.




Exercise 9. Comment on the use of the Past Perfect in the following sentences. Write the sentences in the negative and in the interrogative where it is possible.


1. The programmer had done the work by four o’clock. 2. The policeman asked if there had been any witnesses. 3. By the time we got to the shopping center it had closed. 4. Mike phoned Rosie, but she hadn’t returned home yet. 5. She complained that she was penniless as she had spent all her money. 6. When I came back home, my family had already had dinner. 7. Hardly had I turned on the television, when I heard shocking news. 8. No sooner had he opened the door than the children rushed to meet him. 9. By next morning, the snow that had begun in the night had turned into a blizzard.

Exercise 10. Use the words in brackets to make up sentences with verbs in the Past Perfect Tense.

Example: She was terribly upset. (to quarrel/with her boyfriend)

She had quarreled with her boyfriend.


1. He was very hungry (to have time/to eat/ during the whole day).

2. We were very glad to meet again. (not /to see each other/for several years).

3. Unfortunately I couldn’t speak to him. (to leave/by the time/to come).

4. She was late for the lesson. (because/to miss/the bus).

5. I didn’t recognize Mrs. Dale at once. (to change a lot/since/to meet/last).

6. He said he could go on holiday with us. (to pass/exams/by that/ time).

7. Nelly got a bad mark for the test. (not/to prepare for it/at all).

8. He had to return to the shop. (to forget/to buy bread).

9. I was not surprised at her behaviour. (to know her/for many years).

10. He was already very famous at the age of 30. (to make/an important discovery/by that time).


Exercise 11. Use the Past Perfect Tense.


Example: Why didn’t you listen to that play on the radio?

Because I had heard it before.

1. Why didn’t you see Fred when you came to Moscow? (leave)

2. Why didn’t Kate want to go to the cinema? (see the film)

3. Why didn’t you tell him my new address? (forget)

4. Why didn’t Jeff hear about Kate’s examination? (pass)

5. Why did Fred come home so soon from his holiday? (spend all the money)

6. Why couldn’t you get into your flat at once? (lose the key)

7. What did you learn about Bob? (get married)

8. What did she read in the newspaper about the expedition? (return)

Exercise 12. Use the Past Perfect Tense of the verbs given in brackets to complete the sentences.


Example: When John and I got to the river, the boat race (start already)

When John and I got to the river, the boat race had already started.

1. When she went to bed, she remembered that she (not/switch off the light)

2. She felt tired because she (walk a lot/that day)

3. She went for a holiday after she (pass the exams)

4. I didn’t know what to do when they (show/me/the picture)

5. I didn’t look at the present until after she (go)

6. I was very sorry to hear that he (die)

7. He didn’t start speaking until the children (leave/the room)

8. When I met Helen, I understood why Bill (marry her)

9. He understood the book only after he (read it/again)



Exercise 13. Put the verbs in brackets into the correct form using the Past Perfect or the Past Simple.

Example: Was father at home when I phoned? – No, he had already left.

Was father at home when I phoned? – Yes, but he left soon afterwards.

1. The flat was empty when he arrived. Everybody …… (to go) to the party.

2. There were voices heard from the kitchen, so I…… (to go) straight there.

3. He cannot take part in the competition. He…… (to break) his leg yesterday.

4. There was an accident at the mountain top. Some skier (to break) his leg and the ambulance men were carrying him to the road. So we …… (to stop) to let them pass.



Exercise 14. Put the verbs into the correct form, the Past Simple or the Past Perfect.

1. We hardly (to leave) town, when it (to begin) to rain. 2. The moon (not to rise). There was nothing to dispel the dark of the night. 3. On glancing at the address, he observed that it contained no name. The stranger (not to go) far, so he followed him to ask it. 4. At his house, they (to tell) me that he (to leave) an hour ago. 5. No sooner he (to take) a drink himself, than Mrs. Fettle (to look) in. 6. When I (to come) to see my friend, I (to find) him lying in bed. He (to look) very pale as he (to be) seriously ill for a whole month. 7. He hardly (to light) another cigarette, when the general (to come) into the courtyard. 8. Jemma went slowly down the stairs, Martini following in silence. She (to grow) to look ten years older in these few days, and her hair (to become) gray. 9. Presently the sounds of voices and footsteps approaching along the terrace roused her from the dreamy state into which she (to fall). 10. She was a woman of nearly fifty who (to be) obviously pretty one.

Exercise 15. Translate into English using the Past Perfect Tense.


1. Войдя в комнату, он увидел Анну там, где её оставил. 2. Я заметил, что кто-то забыл свой зонтик на крыльце. 3. Когда гости ушли, она вошла в гостиную и выключила свет. 4. Я не знала, когда он ушел. 5. Мы ехали часа два, когда наконец увидели озеро. 6. Приехав домой, он узнал, что его сестра только что ушла. 7. Когда все ушли, она быстро подошла к телефону и набрала номер. 8. К концу годамы закончили работу над проектом. 9. К пяти часам я уже перевел все статьи и ждал Максима. 10. Когда мы пришли на станцию, поезд уже ушел. 11. Вчера к вечеру мы уже закончили отчет. 12. Он вернулся в Москву, где жил с родителями в детстве.


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