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Are the sentences below grammatically correct and do they make sense? Really appreciate your opinion. Thanks!

1. We visited my sister's friend, who she'd met at school.

  1. Sushi is the first Japanese dish I've ever eaten.

  2. For me Amsterdam is where I've seen U2 in concert for the very first time.

  3. Our husbands had known each other for some time but we hadn't, so I jumped at the idea of getting to know Susan when her husband invited us for dinner. Susan is the first writer younger than me I've had the pleasure to meet in person.
5. Thanks to Peter, who'd lent me their latest album, I was able to listen to their new songs.
Comments  
Hi,

Are the sentences below grammatically correct and do they make sense? Really appreciate your opinion. Thanks!

1. We visited my sister's friend, whom she'd met at school.

  1. Sushi is the first Japanese dish I've ever eaten.

  2. For me, Amsterdam is where I saw U2 in concert for the very first time.

  3. Our husbands had known each other for some time but we hadn't, so I jumped at the idea of getting to know Susan when her husband invited us for dinner. Susan is the first writer younger than me I've had the pleasure to meet in person.
5. Thanks to Peter, who'd lent me their latest album, I was able to listen to their new songs.

Clive
Hi Clive,

As for sentence no. 1, aren't both 'who' and 'whom' correct? I know that 'whom' is slightly more formal. Let me quote Oxford Advanced Learners' Dictionary.

In non-defining relative clauses who or, more formally, whom (but not that) is used and the pronoun cannot be left out: Our doctor, who/whom we all liked very much, retired last week. This pattern is not used very much in spoken English.

About no. 3. Is the simple past tense used here because the place defines/indicates the time when something happened, hence the present perfect cannot be used? What about the phrase 'for the very first time'? Does it have the same meaning as 'It's the first time + present perfect /It was the first time + past perfect?

Thanks,

Alex
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Hi,

As for sentence no. 1, aren't both 'who' and 'whom' correct? As your dictionary says, 'whom' is more formal, but not used a lot in spoken English. So, much depends on how you define 'correct grammar'.

About no. 3. Is the simple past tense used here because the place defines/indicates the time when something happened, hence the present perfect cannot be used? No, it's not the place.

eg You can say 'I have seen U2 in Amsterdam (but not in London).

What about the phrase 'for the very first time'? Does it have the same meaning as 'It's the first time + present perfect /It was the first time + past perfect? Write some sentences and show me, please.

Clive
Clive,

First of all, I really appreciate your comments as I'm really willing to understand how the language works. However, I still need some clarification.

Sentence no. 1

To be honest, I am a bit puzzled and don't really get why you changed the sentence We visited my sister's friend, who she'd met at school. Is it because the version with whom sounded more natural to you? So, is who a mistake here or not?

Sentence no. 3

Why is the simple past tense used here then?

I thought it might work there as in the sentence I lost my new camera in London., where the place fixes it at a time in the past.

First time

Let's look at these sentences:

a) London is the first foreign city I have ever visited.

b) London is where I took a double-decker for the very first time.

c) It's the first time I have taken a double-decker.

d) It was the first time I'd taken a double-decker.

e) In London was the first time I'd taken a double-decker.

Pls comment on the use of the different tenses here.

Cheers,

Alex
Hi,

Sentence no. 1

To be honest, I am a bit puzzled and don't really get why you changed the sentence We visited my sister's friend, who she'd met at school. Is it because the version with whom sounded more natural to you? So, is who a mistake here or not?

Years ago, 'whom' was always taught as the only correct grammar. However, over the yaers since then, people have pretty well stopped using 'whom'. The only place you see it is in writing that people wish to make as formal as possible. Often, something that follows older grammar rules seems more forml to us today.

Simply put, the language is evolving. Perhaps in 20 years, 'whom' will be completely forgotten!

Sentence no. 3

Why is the simple past tense used here then?

I thought it might work there as in the sentence I lost my new camera in London., where the place fixes it at a time in the past. The place has nothing to do with fixing the time. The Simple Past by itslef is what tells us it refers to some time in the past. But we don't know when.

Of course, if I knew you were in London on May 25 last year, 'in London ' tells me 'when' indirectly.

First time

Let's look at these sentences:

a) London is the first foreign city I have ever visited. The Present Perfect focuses the statement on now. It suggests that you are still in London.

If you used Simple Past, it wouldn't suggest that.

b) London is where I took a double-decker for the very first time. The Simple Past just makes this seem like a fact about th past.

c) It's the first time I have taken a double-decker. Sounds like you are on the bus.

d) It was the first time I'd taken a double-decker. The Past Perfect refers to a time before some later time in the past. Usually, this later time needs to be mentioned first.

eg When I visited London last June. I took a trip on a bus. It was the first time I had been ona double decker.

e) In London was the first time I'd taken a double-decker. Same comment as for D.

Clive
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Ok, just one more question. If you say that London is the first foreign city I have ever visited suggests that you are still in London, how would you express (with one sentence and the word first) the idea: my first trip abroad was to London (Since then I have been to London several times as well as to other foreign cities and I'm not in London now). Pls start the sentence with London...

Many thanks,

Alex
Hi,

eg London was the first foreign city I ever visited.

Note that in the real world, the speaker normally knows what city the speaker is in when he speaks!

And if it is written, eg in an email, the recipient also often knows where the writer currently is.

In other words, words are not everything!Emotion: smile

Clive