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Hi

I understand past, present and perfect now but when it is put into continuous, perfect and simple it confuses me. can someone just help with a 4 sentences please as am unsure I will say what I think the answer is and why

Thank you in advance

1. We had finished eating before they arrived - past perfect continuous (because they had been eating)

2. She had had that dog since she was ten - past simple (because she did have a dog)

3. He became a recluse later in life -past simple (because he became a recluse)

4. They will have finished their work before dinner time - present perfect (because they are doing now but will be finished in the near future)
Comments  
1) 'had finished' is a past perfect. 'Eating' is not part of the verb. Sentence is ok.

2) This sentence requires a present perfect, 'has had'.

3) Correct

4) This is a future perfect. The sentence is ok. Note, finished is part of the verb here.
ok after reading these I am unsure if the following is future perfect or future continuous

I'll be wainting by the clock tower I put it as future continuous because I will be waiting is this correct?
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Yes, 'I will be waiting' is a future continuous. It is something that, in the future, you will be doing continuously. However, finishing is a single-shot action that you will have completed before the other event in the future, so it requires a future perfect.

Take a look at this website http://www.englishpage.com/verbpage/futureperfect.html ; it does a great job at explaining all the tenses.
So if I say for example

I have been waiting for you over an hour would this be present perfect continuous
yaggy74So if I say for example

I have been waiting for you for over an hour

would this be present perfect continuous

Yes, that is correct. 'Have' is in the present, 'have been' is a perfect form, and 'waiting' is a continuous form.
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yaggy741. We had finished eating before they arrived - past perfect continuous (because they had been eating)

2. She had had that dog since she was ten - past simple (because she did have a dog)

3. He became a recluse later in life -past simple (because he became a recluse)

4. They will have finished their work before dinner time - present perfect (because they are doing now but will be finished in the near future)
It seems that you think the tenses are named according to their meanings. All of your parenthetical remarks in green indicate this. This is not so. The tenses are named for their forms. You cannot reason your way to the correct tense name simply from the logic of the meaning of the sentence.

1. Look for single words for the simple tenses.
2. Look for a form of have followed by a past participle for the perfect tenses.
3. Look for a form of be followed by an -ing form for the continuous tenses.
4. Look for will or 'll for future tenses.

You must have an -ing ending somewhere to have a continuous tense. had finished has no -ing. It can't be continuous. This is past perfect.

had had consists of two words. In a declarative sentence, the past simple always consists of one word. This can't be a simple tense. It's a past perfect.

became is past simple. That one is correct.

will indicates the future. have indicates the perfect. will have finished can't be present perfect. It's future perfect.

CJ
Emotion: embarrassedContinuous