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§ 274. The present non-continuous perfect js regularly found in adverbial clauses of time and condition when the connotation of priority is implied.

E. g. When you have forgotten it you won't be so foolish as to talk about it. (Maxwell).

§ 275. What makes the present non-continuous perfect fundamentally different from the past non-continuous non-perfect can be briefly summarized as follows:

  1. The present non-continuous perfect ex presses an act ion which though belonging to the past is connected with the present situation, whereas the past non-continuous non- perfect denotes an act wholly unconnected with the present. In brief, the past non-continuous non-perfect belongs to the sphere of the past, the present non-continuous perfect — to that of the present.

  2. The present non-continuous perfect does not, as a rule, occur in narration. For the most part it represents individual acts, but not a successive chain of events.

  3. The present non-continuous perfect denoting isolated acts attracts the attention of the listener (or reader) towards the action it expresses, whereas the past indefinite non-perfect may leave it in the shadow 2.

!Op. cit , p. 115.

2 See И. П. И в а н о в a, op. cit., p. 128.

171

Cf. I f о г go t Adrian: lie'll have to sit on his sticks and

think about bones and Diana. (Galsworthy). That American chap has not forgotten anything I see. (Galsworthy).

In the first situation the act of forgetting is not made prominent, what happens to Adrian being uppermost in the speaker's mind. In the second sentence it is the action of forgetting that counts.

The Past Non-Continuous Perfect

§ 276. As a unit of the language system it presents an act in the past (past tense) unspecified as to its character (non-continuous aspect) and preceding some situation (perfect order).

When it occurs in speech, the situation is usually specified either within the same sentence or outside it

E. g. He called all the powers of heaven to witness that never h a d a woman repaid with such gross deception an honest man's belief in her. (Maugham). He looked at his watch. He had been asked to dinner at half past nine... (Ib.).

Cf. The ministry has fallen. (Ib.).

(The situation in the present is not specified, as it is the situation of speech.)

§ 277. When used with terminative verbs it may acquire a distinct connotation of resultativity, as in

He reminded the bride that her father was a hero of the great war whose glorious wounds had been rewarded by a concession to sell tobacco. (Maugham).

The resultative tinge is sometimes uppermost in the speaker's (or writer's) mind, so'that the meaning of priority is actually suppressed.

E. g. He waited sullenly till the engineer had spread out the drawings on the floor. (Black). No one had bothered us when we were in plain sight along the railway. (Hemingway).

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§ 278. The past non-continuous perfect may be inclusive in meaning if supported by the context.

Dinny said you ha d n' t had any new breeches since the war (Galsworthy).

Unless supported by the context it is mostly exclusive.

He was not looking at her, so she was able to study him as she h a d n о t yet h a d the chance of doing. (Galsworthy). / knew he ha d I i v e d in China. (Randall).

§ 279. What makes it different from the present non-continuous perfect, apart from its tense meaning is the fact that the past non-continuous perfect is freely used in narra­tion. Thus in the sentence The young man had opened the door, threw the pyjamas at the senator's head and quickly closed it again (Maugham) the past non-continuous perfect occurs in a sentence reproducing a succession of past events, where the past non-continuous non-perfect is the usual gram-meme. The past non-continuous perfect helps to stress the completeness of the first action. Here are some more passages illustrative of its use in narration.

Our house had collapsed backward..., by a chance the kitchen and scullery had escaped and stood buried now under soil and ruins closed in by tons of soil. (Wells).

Stephen had r e с о g n i z e d him at once and barely glanced at the crisp engraved visiting-card which the other presented to him as Jenny, with a murmured word, excused herself and left the room. (Cronin).

Occasionally it may acquire a distinct modal tinge of irreality when used with to hope, to mean, etc., showing that the hope or intention has not been carried out '. A person says / had meant to apologize (Buck) when reprimanded for not having done so. n

The Future No n-C ontinuous Perfect

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