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What is relative past tense?

 

Definition
 

Relative past tense is a relative tense that refers to a time located before that of a contextually determined temporal reference point.

Example (English)
 
  • The construction “having + verb” in the following sentences expresses relative past tense:

    • Having spoken, he sat down.
    • Having spoken, he will sit down.

    The speaking occurs before the time of sitting, which may have differing relations to the moment of utterance.

  • Generic
      Relative past tense is a kind of
     
    Source
     

    Comrie 1985b 59


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