Hey there! Sign in to join this conversationNew here? Join for free
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    3
    ReputationRep:
    Hiya! Can anyone explain to me the differences between 'was' and 'had been' tenses please: (they are basic, but sometimes it seems to me that I don't quite know when to use them )

    1. He was hit by a train.
    2. He had been hit by a train.

    And also, when do I use 'have had?' or 'had had?'

    People say: you only use 'have been' or 'had been' when the things are still happening, eg: 'I have been treated well.' And you use 'was' only for the things which already happened. eg: ‘I was cheated well.' But, occasionally, I saw people using 'had been' even though the thing already completed. eg: a journalist had been instructed to write an article.' Why don't use : 'was instructed.'

    Thanks a lot
    • TSR Support Team
    • Study Helper
    Offline

    20
    ReputationRep:
    TSR Support Team
    Study Helper
    (Original post by jessieyang)
    Hiya! Can anyone explain to me the differences between 'was' and 'had been' tenses please: (they are basic, but sometimes it seems to me that I don't quite know when to use them )

    1. He was hit by a train.
    2. He had been hit by a train.

    And also, when do I use 'have had?' or 'had had?'

    People say: you only use 'have been' or 'had been' when the things are still happening, eg: 'I have been treated well.' And you use 'was' only for the things which already happened. eg: ‘I was cheated well.' But, occasionally, I saw people using 'had been' even though the thing already completed. eg: a journalist had been instructed to write an article.' Why don't use : 'was instructed.'

    Thanks a lot
    There's no real difference in my opinion. It's just matter of preference. They both mean the same thing and stand in for one another.

    But gramatically,
    The first one is just telling us that the action just happened. Usually past simple tense.
    the second one is referring to something that happened in the past at a particular time or place.

    Had/Has/Have been are usually used for something that was done in the past and still applied (multiple events).

    Was/Were usually applied to something done in the past that no longer applies (single event).

    For example:
    1. The well had been producing clean water.
    2. The well was producing clean water.

    The first sentence implies that 'I' had, at some point of time, run. It could have been earlier in the day, or even the night before.

    The second sentence implies that 'I' have just finished running a little while ago.

    I hope that makes more sense now? English grammar is very confusing sometimes! :flutter:
    • Thread Starter
    Offline

    3
    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by The Empire Odyssey)
    There's no real difference in my opinion. It's just matter of preference. They both mean the same thing and stand in for one another.

    But gramatically,
    The first one is just telling us that the action just happened. Usually past simple tense.
    the second one is referring to something that happened in the past at a particular time or place.

    Had/Has/Have been are usually used for something that was done in the past and still applied (multiple events).

    Was/Were usually applied to something done in the past that no longer applies (single event).

    For example:
    1. The well had been producing clean water.
    2. The well was producing clean water.

    The first sentence implies that 'I' had, at some point of time, run. It could have been earlier in the day, or even the night before.

    The second sentence implies that 'I' have just finished running a little while ago.

    I hope that makes more sense now? English grammar is very confusing sometimes! :flutter:

    Yehh. I get it now. That is very comprehensive. Cheers.
 
 
 
  • See more of what you like on The Student Room

    You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

  • Poll
    What's your favourite Christmas sweets?
    Useful resources

    Make your revision easier

    OMAM

    Ultimate Of Mice And Men Thread

    Plot, context, character analysis and everything in between.

    Notes

    Revision Hub

    All our revision materials in one place

    Love books

    Common grammar and vocabulary problems

    Get your questions asked and answered

    Useful literary websitesStudy help rules and posting guidelines

    Groups associated with this forum:

    View associated groups
  • See more of what you like on The Student Room

    You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

  • The Student Room, Get Revising and Marked by Teachers are trading names of The Student Room Group Ltd.

    Register Number: 04666380 (England and Wales), VAT No. 806 8067 22 Registered Office: International House, Queens Road, Brighton, BN1 3XE

    Quick reply
    Reputation gems: You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.