Learn how and when to use the Present Perfect Tense in English with examples.
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Forming the Present Perfect Tense
In English grammar, the present perfect is a combination of the present tense and perfect aspect that is used to express a past event that has present consequences.
The structure of the Present Perfect:
- Affirmative Sentence
Subject + have/has + past participle
I have tried sushi before.
- Negative Sentence
Subject + have not (haven’t)/has not (hasn’t) + past participle
I have not tried sushi before.
- Interrogative Sentence
Have/Has + subject + past participle?
Have you tried sushi before?
How to Use the Present Perfect Tense
The Present Perfect is used:
- To express things you have done in your life
I’ve been to England.
She has never studied Japanese.
- To express number of times you have done something
I’ve been to Paris three times.
How many times have you tried to call her?
- To describe recently completed actions which are important now
I have some bad news. I’ve lost my job.
I can’t play football tonight – I’ve hurt my leg.
- To express situations that started in the past and are still true
I’ve known James for 4 or 5 years.
She’s been the director of that company since 2007.
- To describe unfinished actions or situations
I’ve known Julie for ten years. (I met her ten years ago and I still know her)
We have lived here since 2004.
- To express present result
I’ve lost my keys.
John has missed the bus, so he’ll be late.
Time Adverbs in Present Perfect Tense