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Roosevelt and Churchill went to Casablanca to discuss strategy and study the next phase of the war. Stalin had been invited but declined/had declined in the light of the ongoing conflict at Stalingrad.

The original sentence just says "declined", but I was wondering if "had declined" would be correct too? If I understand this correctly, since we introduced the past perfect with "had been invited", there is no need to continue with anything but the past simple because he declined after being invited, right?
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NecrophagistIf I understand this correctly, since we introduced the past perfect with "had been invited", there is no need to continue with anything but the past simple because he declined after being invited, right?

Correct. If you draw a timeline, Stalin had been invited and later declined. Both events are in the past, and the invitation occurred before the rejection of the offer. But you could continue with past perfect.

Here's an example from the textbook Advanced Grammar in Use by Martin Hewings, published by Cambridge University Press, with a copyright date of 2015. The example is taken from Unit 5, page 10.


When we understand that we are talking about events before another past event, we can often use either the past perfect or the present simple.

We bought a new car last month. We'd driven my parents' old car for ages, but it started (or had started) to fall apart. We put (or had put) a new engine in it but that didn't solve (or hadn't solved) the problems we were having.


So, as you can see, you can follow either path and still be correct.

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MountainHiker
NecrophagistIf I understand this correctly, since we introduced the past perfect with "had been invited", there is no need to continue with anything but the past simple because he declined after being invited, right?

Correct. If you draw a timeline, Stalin had been invited and later declined. Both events are in the past, and the invitation occurred before the rejection of the offer. But you could continue with past perfect.

Here's an example from the textbook Advanced Grammar in Use by Martin Hewings, published by Cambridge University Press, with a copyright date of 2015. The example is taken from Unit 5, page 10.


When we understand that we are talking about events before another past event, we can often use either the past perfect or the present simple.

We bought a new car last month. We'd driven my parents' old car for ages, but it started (or had started) to fall apart. We put (or had put) a new engine in it but that didn't solve (or hadn't solved) the problems we were having.


So, as you can see, you can follow either path and still be correct.

I understand. Thank you very much for the detailed reply.

Thank you for letting me know you found my reply helpful.