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If I am talking about the characteristics of someone whom I got to know many years ago and now, he is probably possessing this characteristics, should I use present or past tense?

For example, which one is correct? In the context I believe that he is still a smart-ass now.

I got to know him 3 years ago and he was a smart-ass

I got to know him 3 years ago and he is a smart-ass

Comments  

In my opinion, the second sentence is correct because his characteristic still exists from the past to now. Therefore, using present tense seems more appropriate

kenny1999

If I am talking about the characteristics of someone whom I got to know many years ago and now, he is probably possessing this characteristics, should I use present or past tense?
For example, which one is correct? In the context I believe that he is still a smart-ass now.

I got to know him 3 years ago and he was a smart-ass

I got to know him 3 years ago and he is a smart-ass

Three things: Spell out single-digit numbers unless there is a reason not to. When you don't use closing punctuation, your would-be sentence looks like a car with no back bumper. Two independent clauses joined by "and" usually take a comma.

Both sentences are fine and convey your meaning, but only the second actually says it. It is often better to use more words. In my vernacular, it might be "I got to know him three years ago. He was a smart-ass then, and he is a smart-ass now."

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In my opinion, based on your context, I'd choose the first one because of what I highlighted.

kenny1999

If I am talking about the characteristics of someone whom I got to know many years ago and now, he is probably possessing this characteristics, should I use present or past tense?
For example, which one is correct? In the context I believe that he is still a smart-ass now.

I got to know him 3 years ago and he was a smart-ass

I got to know him 3 years ago and he is a smart-ass

Probably leaves a possibility of not knowing for certain; you don't really know in the present. There is a possibility that he is not. Grammatically, when you knew him, that was in the past. When you found out he has a certain characteristic, that was in the past, too. So for honesty or accuracy, keep it in the past.

That's my opinion grammatically, but actually, I suggest using neither one. Let others make their own impressions.