The Present Simple. Form, Uses and a Time Lines.
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The Present Simple. Form, Uses and a Time Lines.

This article provides a short and concise explanation of the present simple including, form, uses and timelines.

This article is going to explain one of the twelve tenses in the English language, the present simple. The present simple is used for when we are talking about a fact or generalization. An example being He eats dinner at 6 o'clock. The statement of eating dinner is a fact that he actually eats dinner at 6 o'clock.

Third Person

Where you are using the third person, you must add the -s ending to the verb. This can either be -s or -es. For example, play becomes plays. The third person is if you are talking about another person, e.g. he, she, it. You might say, she goes to the cinema on Tuesdays. 

Form

The present simple tense takes the form of subject + verb + object. For example, I walk home. Here 'I' is the subject, 'walk' is the verb and 'home' is the object.

In the negative form, the present simple tenses is subject + don't/doesn't + verb + object. For example I don't eat fish, or she doesn't eat fish. Here 'I' and 'she' are the subject directly followed b y don't or doesn't, followed by the verb 'eat' and then the object 'fish'.

When you ask a question in the present simple, the present simple uses the form, do/does + subject + verb + object? For example, do you eat fish, or does she eat fish? Here do or does precedes the subjects 'you' and 'she' followed by the verb 'eat' and finally the object 'fish'.

Uses

Now (Not Continuous)

Here the action is happening at the present moment in time and the action is not continuous. For example, she isn't at home, or do you have a car? In the first sentence, 'she' is the subject, 'isn't' is the verb and 'home' is the object. In the second sentence, 'you' is the subject, 'have' is the verb and 'car' is the object.

Repeated Actions

We also use the present tense when we are talking about repeated actions or things that we do often or habitually. For example, I play tennis. This means that you have played tennis before, you might or might not be playing at the moment and believe that you will play again in the future.

Scheduled Event in the Future

We also use the present simple when we are talking about a scheduled event in the future, this is usually the near future but doesn't have to be. For example, The football match starts at 3 o'clock. Here the football match is scheduled to start at 3 o'clock. Moreover, you might say, When does Mary fly home? You might now know the answer, it could be in the near future or a long time away, for example, Mary flies home next year.

Facts or Generalizations

You can also use the present simple to talk about facts or generalizations in English. For example, you could say, I always eat dinner at 3 o'clock. Here you are stating that in the past and in the future, you will always eat dinner at 3 o'clock. Moreover, an example of a fact, She walked home at 10pm. This fact states that she was walking home at 10 o'clock.

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