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The paradigm of the verb in the present perfect





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Affirmative Interrogative Negative
  I have spoken He (she, it) has spoken We have spoken You have spoken They have spoken   Have I spoken? Has he (she, it) spoken? Have we spoken? Have you spoken? Have they spoken?   I have not (haven’t) spoken He (she, it) has not (hasn’t) spoken We have not (haven’t) spoken You have not (haven’t) spoken They have not (haven’t) spoken

Negative-interrogative

a) Have I not spoken? Has he (she, it) not spoken? Have we not spoken? Have you not spoken? Have they not spoken? b) Haven’t I spoken? Hasn’t he (she, it) spoken? Haven’t we spoken? Haven’t you spoken? Haven’t they spoken?

§ 24. In all its uses the present perfect directly or indirectly refers actions to the moment of speaking. This connection with the moment of speaking predetermines its use; the present perfect is found in conversations and communications dealing with the state of things in the present and is never found in narratives referring to the past.

 

The present perfect is used:

 

1.When the speaker means that he is interested in the mere fact that the action took place, but not in the time when it took place, nor in the circumstances. The time of the action is either not indicated at all, or is indicated only vaguely, by means of adverbs of indefinite time (yet, already, just, lately, recently, of late, ever, never, always, etc.).

 

I don’t know what he’s going to do, I haven’t seen him.

Has Mother returned?

I haven’t read the letter yet.

Why are you so hard on him? What has he done?

Let’s go, it has already stopped raining.

I’ve never seen him in this play.

 

2. When the speaker means that, though the action is over, the period of time within which it was performed is not yet over at the moment of speaking (with the words today, this week, this year, etc.).

 

I’ve seen her today.

She’s returned from England this week.

I’ve had a splitting headache this morning.

 

If the period of time is over or the action refers to some particular moment of time within that period the past indefinite, not the present perfect is used.

 

I had a bad headache this morning (said in the afternoon, in the evening, etc.).

She was at my party this month (at the time when the party was given).

 

In such cases (items 1 and 2) the exclusive present perfect is rendered in Russian by the past tense.

 

3. The present perfect is also used to denote actions still in progress, (the inclusive present perfect) which began before the moment of speaking and go on up to that moment or into it. In this case either the starting point of the action is specified (by means of the adverb since, a prepositional phrase with since, or an adverbial clause with the conjunction since), or the period during which it continued (by various adverbs or phrases with for). It is thus used in the following cases:

 

a) with statal verbs which do not normally take continuous forms:

 

We met by chance last year, and I haven’t seen her since.

I’ve been here since 8.

I love you. I’ve loved you ever since we met.

I’ve known you all my life.

I haven’t seen you for ages.

 

b) with some actional (durative) verbs in which case the present perfect continuous is also possible. The

difference between the two forms lies in the following: in the case of the present perfect the logical stress

is laid rather on the fact than on the process, whereas in the case of the present perfect continuous it is

the process that is important.

 

I’ve worked here since 1960.

He has played football for five years already.

 

In such cases the inclusive present perfect is rendered in Russian by the present tense.

 

4. The present perfect is also used in subordinate adverbial clauses of time and condition introduced by the corresponding conjunctions to denote a future action taking place before a certain moment in the future.

 

I’ll stay with you until you’ve finished everything.

Wait till I’ve written the notice.

 

Sometimes adverbials of place and objects expressed by words describ­ing situations may serve in an oblique way as past time markers, connect­ing the activities not only with places and situations, but also with the time when the actions took place, accordingly the past indefinite is used.

 

Did you meet him in London? (when you were in London)

Did you like his singing? (when he sang)

 

The same is true of special questions beginning with where:

 

Where did you see him?

Where did you buy this hat?

 

Note 1: In spesial questions with when only the past indefiniteis possible, though the answer can be either in the past indefinite or in the present perfect depending on the actual state of affairs:  
- When did he come? - He came yesterday. - He has just come.  
Note 2:   The present perfect, not the past indefinite is used with the verb to be in the sense of to go, to visit even though the adverbials of place are used: Have you been to London? She says she’s been to Paris three times.   The meaning of such statements is ‘was there at a certain time, but is there no longer’.  

 

Although the time of the actions denoted by the present perfect is not specified, it is generally understood as more or less recent, not long past.

 

§ 25. The ways of translating the present perfect into Russian vary due to the peculiarities of its time orientation and the vagueness of its aspective meaning. It can therefore be translated into Russian either by the past tense (if it is exclusive present perfect) or by the present tense (if it is inclusive present perfect). The latter applies to statal verbs and some actional durative verbs.

 

She has gone home. Она уже ушла домой. (The past tense, perfective.)
  The red ballon has burst.   Красный шарик лопнул. (The past tense, perfective, momentary.)
  He has hit me twice.   Он ударил меня два раза. (The past tense, perfective, iterative.)
  I’ve already seen him.   Я его уже видел. (The past tense, imperfective.)
  She has seen the film three times.   Она смотрела этот фильм три раза. (The past tense, imperfective, iterative.)
  They’ve lived here for seven years.   Они живут здесь семь лет.
  I’ve known her since 1975.   Я знаю ее с 1975 года. (The present tense, inaperfective, durative.)

 

The present perfect continuous

 

§ 26. Formation. The present perfect continuous is formed analytically by means of the auxiliary to be in the present perfect (have/has been) plus participle I of the notional verb.

In the interrogative the first auxiliary (have/has) comes before the subject, the second auxiliary (been) and participle I follow the subject.

In the negative the corresponding negative forms of the first auxiliary (have) are used, the second auxiliary (been) and participle I follow them.

 

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