Simple past tense overview

To say that something happened some time ago, we use the simple past tense. If you are already familiar with the three forms of the verb (base form, simple past and past participle), you should have no difficulty constructing simple past tense forms.

Read the example sentences given below.

  • I met an old friend yesterday.
  • His father died last year.
  • I worked harder last month.
  • I got up early in the morning.
  • Susie won the first prize.
  • I was ill last week.
  • I waited for him till 11 o’clock.
  • My mother baked a delicious cake yesterday.
  • We went to the theatre yesterday evening.
  • John left ten minutes ago.
  • I watched a movie in the afternoon.

Here is a sample dialogue using the simple past tense.

Situation: Two friends are looking at pictures of a holiday.

Arjun: Anjali, do you want to see the pictures of my holiday in Mumbai?

Anjali: Sure, what was it like?

Arjun: Ah, the holiday was great. The people were friendly and warm. The weather was pleasant and I absolutely loved the Mumbai street food. Of course, some streets were filthy and I saw quite a few dogs roaming around, still I loved that chaos and madness.

Anjali: So you really loved that place, right?

Arjun: Yeah, I loved the city. Look at this. It is the picture of the Taj Mahal Hotel.

Anjali: Beautiful.

Arjun: Yeah. We spent two nights and one day at the Taj Mahal Hotel. It was the experience of a lifetime. I felt like a king.

Anjali: And what’s this?

Arjun: It’s the photo of the Chatrapati Shivaji Terminus. Until a few years ago, it used to be called the Victoria Terminus.

Anjali: Impressive architecture.

Arjun: Yes, but it wasn’t the architecture that I liked. I was more impressed by the vibrancy of the city. Mumbai never sleeps. Actually, streets never get empty there. It sort of made me feel safe and secure.

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