mithra wrote:I still don't get the usuage of "HAD" over "HAS", since it says "we have now realized" - That is present, so why can't we say "has appeared" (which means continue till present and now we realized it wasn't the case), whereas "had" would mean it appeared in PAST's PAST....I always get confused in this usage...help?
yeah, i can see how this is tough.
when you say "we have realized", though, this actually means that the realization took place in the PAST. (probably the recent past, but in the past nonetheless.)
here's the fuller deal with the present perfect ("has/have VERBed"):if you use the present perfect with a POINT EVENT - i.e., an event that OCCURS AT A SINGLE INSTANCE IN TIME
(realized, graduated, paid, given birth, scored, etc.) - then the event must have taken place IN THE PAST.
normally this is the quite recent
past, but that's not always the case.
think about these:my brother has obtained three business degrees.
the team has scored 32 points in this quarter.
Russia and the U.S. have sent expeditions to the moon.
these are all point events, and they are all PAST events.
the second is obviously in the very recent past, but the third is an event that happened over forty years ago (but to which we can still refer in the present perfect if it's relevant to the current topic of discussion
). the first could be anywhere from a few minutes ago to 60-70 years ago, depending on my brother's age.
notice that, since these are "point" events, it's actually IMPOSSIBLE to refer to them in the present
- unless you're narrating them, in the style of a sports announcer ("Demps scores a touchdown!")
so if you see them in the present perfect, they've already happened.
verb tenses are easily the toughest aspect of learning any
language. hang in there.