Past tenses with present meaning

After some expressions we use a past tense to refer to the present or future.

After I wish, we usually use a past tense. Note the use of were instead of was.

  • I wish my brother were here. OR I wish my brother was here. (NOT I wish my brother is here.)
  • I wish I looked better.
  • I wish I had more money.

In clauses after it’s time, we use a past tense.

  • It’s time she went to bed. OR It is time for her to go to bed. (NOT It is time she goes to bed.)

Would rather is followed by a past tense.

  • I would rather you went home now. (NOT I would rather you go home now.)

Manjusha Nambiar

Hi, I'm Manjusha. This is my blog where I give IELTS preparation tips.

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