Erik asked in Society & CultureLanguages · 1 month ago

English grammar question?

I was watching tv, and in the tv someone said " I really wish you hadn't told me about that." but I remember you shouldn't use a past tense after a past tense, in this case it will be hadn't and told, which are both past tense. Isn't the correct way should be "I really wish you haven't told me about that" or " I really wish you hadn't tell me about that."  Am I right? Or wrong on this one. And also, am I right about you shouldn't use past tense with past tense?

2 Answers

  • Anonymous
    1 month ago

    "you shouldn't use a past tense after a past tense" -- I don't know where you got that, but it's nonsense:  Where DID he say he WENT last night?  He SAID he WENT to a movie.

    Correct:  I wish [NOW] you HADN'T [in the past] TOLD me about that.

  • 1 month ago

    You are mistaken. The original sentence is correct. It is over 50 years since my school days but I believe the speaker was using the 'pluperfect' tense. It uses a past tense with a past participle. It is a tense that seems widely misunderstood or completely ignored in popular American English in which people say nonsensical things like 'If I would have been ...' when what they really mean is 'If I had been ....'. Language always changes over time so maybe, in North America, the pluperfect will fall into disuse. I hope not but the evidence is not encouraging.

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