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tense

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tense

Postby Ink Ribbon » Sun Sep 18, 2005 10:50 am

Hi all,
This is my first time to post. I am a Japanese student learning Enghlish. :D

Here's my question.
Are the following sentences both correct? If so, what is the difference between them?

(1) I decided to wait at the station until my wife came.
(2) I decided to wait at the station until my wife comes.

I appreciate it very much if you could give me some advice.
Thank you in advance.
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Postby Brazilian dude » Sun Sep 18, 2005 12:05 pm

The way I see is that in the first sentence, you left the stadium already, you're somewhere else and your wife joined you there.

The second one means you're still at the stadium waiting for her and will only leave in her company.

Brazilian dude

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Languages rule!
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Postby Flaminius » Sun Sep 18, 2005 12:11 pm

BDに先を越されてしまった。

第二の文では until my wife comesが未来のこととして扱われていることが理解できればOKです。つまり妻がまだ来ていない状況を述べています。

Good luck,
Flam
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Postby Brazilian dude » Sun Sep 18, 2005 12:24 pm

僕は西の一番早いピストルだ。

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Postby Flaminius » Sun Sep 18, 2005 12:31 pm

En japonais, je sense quelque chose lascive dans ce que tu as ecrit. Saie [<-- Sois] gentil.
Last edited by Flaminius on Sun Sep 18, 2005 10:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Brazilian dude » Sun Sep 18, 2005 12:36 pm

Hahahaha, non, pas du tout, je faisais allusion aux films de l'ouest américain où les cowboys se vantaient d'être l'arme la plus rapide de l'ouest.

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Postby Flaminius » Sun Sep 18, 2005 12:45 pm

西じゃない。西部だよ。西部で一番ピストルが早いのは俺だ、とかね。
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Postby Brazilian dude » Sun Sep 18, 2005 12:55 pm

ああ、知らなかったね。ありがとう。

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Postby Brazilian dude » Sun Sep 18, 2005 12:59 pm

誰もは私たちが分からないのはおもしろいいねえ! :P

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Postby Flaminius » Sun Sep 18, 2005 1:26 pm

Henricus intellegit.
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Postby Brazilian dude » Sun Sep 18, 2005 1:31 pm

Sed ille non parat periculum.

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Thank you, guys

Postby Ink Ribbon » Mon Sep 19, 2005 8:48 pm

I think I got the picture. I was surprised to find Japanese-speaking people in here.
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Re: tense

Postby Garzo » Tue Sep 20, 2005 9:19 am

Ink Ribbon wrote:Hi all,
This is my first time to post. I am a Japanese student learning Enghlish. :D

Here's my question.
Are the following sentences both correct? If so, what is the difference between them?

(1) I decided to wait at the station until my wife came.
(2) I decided to wait at the station until my wife comes.

I appreciate it very much if you could give me some advice.
Thank you in advance.


Just in case it's not clear...
Came is past tense, and comes is present tense. The main verb of the sentence is decided, so the whole is past tense: the speaker has made the decision. However, the phrase beginning with until is an adverbial phrase attached to the sentence. If the verb in this phrase is in the past tense (came), then she has already come, and it appears that the speaker is recounting the event from a point of view after the fact (his wife did arrive, but he's speaking about his wait for her). If, on the other hand, the verb here is in the present tense (comes), the speaker does not necessarily know whether his wife will arrive or not. He appears to speaking at a time after making his decision to wait, but before her arrival.

Just to complicate things further, it is possible to use the present tense here even if speaking after the event (her arrival). This is called the historic present, and is used (particularly in fiction and story-telling) to make the story more vivid. The historic present makes the hearer/reader feel that they are there in the moment.

I hope that helps.

-- Garzo.
"Poetry is that which gets lost in translation" — Robert Frost
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Thanks Garzo,

Postby Ink Ribbon » Tue Sep 20, 2005 11:49 am

Thank you very much for your explanation, which did help me a lot.
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Re: Thank you, guys

Postby Stargzer » Tue Sep 20, 2005 1:45 pm

Ink Ribbon wrote:I think I got the picture. I was surprised to find Japanese-speaking people in here.


Even worse for some of us: they're Japanese-writing people! :wink: The French and Latin I can figure out with a dictionary . . .

But just to confuse you, that first sentence could also be written:

Even worse for some of us: there're Japanese-writing people! :wink:


Welcome, Ink Ribbon. Stay around a while!
Regards//Larry

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