Past Progressive Tense

The past continuous describes actions or events in a time before now, which began in the past and is still going on at the time of speaking. In other words, it expresses an unfinished or incomplete action in the past.

It is used:

  • To describe the background in a story written in the past tense.
    Example:The sun
    was shining and the birds were singing as the lion came out of a                          bush.
                   The other animals
    were relaxing near the stream, He was looking his                                 cubs.

  • To describe an unfinished action which was interrupted by another event or action.
    Example: I was reading an interesting novel, there was a loud noise.
                   She waiting for her friend at the bus stop when the accident happened.

  • To express a change of mind:
     Example: I was going to watch an episode on television but I've decided to get my                             homework done instead.
                     My friend was going to buy a flat but he bought a car instead.

  • With 'wonder', to make a very polite request.
     Example: I was wondering if you could work this Sunday.

Summary

The past continuous describes actions or events in a time before now, which began in the past and is still going on at the time of speaking. In other words, it expresses an unfinished or incomplete action in the past.

It is used:

  • To describe the background in a story written in the past tense.
    Example:The sun
    was shining and the birds were singing as the lion came out of a                          bush.
                   The other animals
    were relaxing near the stream, He was looking his                                 cubs.

  • To describe an unfinished action which was interrupted by another event or action.
    Example: I was reading an interesting novel, there was a loud noise.
                   She waiting for her friend at the bus stop when the accident happened.

  • To express a change of mind:
     Example: I was going to watch an episode on television but I've decided to get my                             homework done instead.
                     My friend was going to buy a flat but he bought a car instead.

  • With 'wonder', to make a very polite request.
     Example: I was wondering if you could work this Sunday.

Previous
Next