The Past Indefinite Tense — Habitual Action
(A) This tense is used for a past habit, indicated generally by ‘Often, seldom, usually, normally, generally, occasionally, sometimes, never, always, frequently, rarely, daily, used to, would’ etc. For example:
- They never drank wine.
- He always carried an umbrella.
- I used to go to Delhi by train.
- She would go there daily.
(B) This tense is also used for a single act completed in the past. Definite point of time is denoted by ‘Since, ever since, earlier, ago, back, before, last, yesterday, the other day, (any point of time in the past’) etc. For example:
- I met your brother yesterday.
- She bought a car two years ago.
It is wrong to say:
- I have met your brother yesterday. (remove ‘have’)
- She has bought a car two years ago. (remove ‘has’)
Present Perfect + Point of time = Simple Past
‘Point of time’ denotes the time when the action takes place. (Present, Past, Future Tense). For example:
- I come here every Sunday. (Point of time)
- I went to Delhi yesterday. (Point of time)
- I shall go there tomorrow. (Point of time)
Time Expression: For time expression, look up Perfect Continuous Tense.