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"I told you I am..."
OR
"I told you I was..."

is there a rule in English that you have to use the same tense in one sentence?
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Picnic"I told you I am..."OR"I told you I was..."

Both are possible.

I told you I am in Spain (until the 22nd).

I told you I was in Spain (last week).

Is there a rule in English that you have to use the same tense in one sentence? absolutely not!!!

Picnicis there a rule in English that you have to use the same tense in one sentence?
No, but you often can do that:

I knew that he lived in Madrid. = I knew that he lives in Madrid.

CB
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Cool Breeze
Picnicis there a rule in English that you have to use the same tense in one sentence?
No, but you often can do that:

I knew that he lived in Madrid. = I knew that he lives in Madrid. Sorry, but these two sentences do not have the same meaning.

CB
CB's point is that they can have the same meaning, Canuck - that the dependent verb can regress with the main verb.
Mister MicawberCB's point is that they can have the same meaning, But how is a student, or anyone else, to know when they have the same meaning and when they don't?

Logically they do not have the same meaning, and even people who are fond of backshifting, which are more than a few, admit that with backshifting the meaning can be "equivocal". Actually the resulting meaning can become more than equivocal; it can become a different meaning with backshifting.

I realize that languuage is not always logical, but when there is a logical altenative it should be brought up for discussion.

I am not trying to be argumentative, but I can't help but bring this up in order to show the serious problem with backshifting.


The meanings that follow from what the words say are as below.

I knew that he lived in Madrid. (= He lived in Madrid in the past.)

I knew that he lives in Madrid. (= He lives in Madrid now.)
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The meanings that follow from what the words say are as below. I knew that he lived in Madrid. (= He lived in Madrid in the past.)-- For the native speaker, simply not true, Canuck. Only out of context could you assume that.
Mister MicawberThe meanings that follow from what the words say are as below. I knew that he lived in Madrid. (= He lived in Madrid in the past.)-- For the native speaker, simply not true, Canuck. Only out of context could you assume that.
1. What about for ESL students.
2. My 'name' is not "Canuck".
3. goodbye
p.s.

Perhaps you would like to explain why anyone should choose to say "I knew that he lived in Madrid." to mean "I knew that he lives in Madrid.", when you can just directly say the latter.

All languages slowly change over time, and I am just arguing in favor of speaking directly rather than following the bad old habit of backshifting.
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