past time: simple past

  • Forms

    Affirmative Question Negative
    I worked you worked he/she/it worked, etc did I work? did you work? did he/she/it work? etc I did not work you did not work he/she/it did not work, etc
  • Meanings
    We use the simple past tense to talk about many kinds of past events: short, quickly finished actions and happenings, longer situations, and repeated events.
    Peter broke a window last night.
    44
    I spent all my childhood in Scotland.
    past-1 Scotland l-•-? future
    t- N0W
    Regularly every summer, Janet fell in love.
    We use the simple past in ‘narrative’ — when we tell stories, and when we tell people about past events.
    Once upon a time there was a beautiful princess who lived with her father. One day the king decided . . .
    I saw John this morning. He told me .. .
    (NOT I have seen John this morning. He has told me . . .)
    A simple rule: use the simple past tense if you do not have a good reason for using one of the other past or perfect tenses.