Past perfect tense is used to show an action that happened before another action in the past. In other words, this tense indicates that one event occurred before another did.
The past perfect tense is also used to create a time frame in the past. In other words, this tense can be used when you have a certain period in the past, and you want to explain what happened during that time frame.
Past perfect tense describes action completed before the past-moment we are talking about. This tense bears the same relation to the past time as the Present Perfect Tense does to now.
Structure / Formula
Past perfect tense is formed with the helping verb “had” and the past participle of a verb.
Formula for affirmative sentences.
Subject + had + past participle(V3)
He/She/It/I/We/They/You + had + past participle
- We had taken our seats before the show began.
- I had completed my assignment before Thursday.
Subject + had + not + past participle
- We had not taken our seats before the show began.
- I had not completed my assignment before Thursday.
Had + subject + past participle ?
- Had we taken our seats before the show began?
- Had I completed my assignment before Thursday?
Read also: 50 Sentences of Past Perfect Tense
Rules / Usage
|To describe the action that happened before another action.||She had already cooked the meal when I reached home.|
|To describe the finished past action, the result of which is clear.||I was happy. Why? |
I had passed the exam.
|Time expressions||He had visited museum until last month.|
Past Perfect Tense Examples (30 Sentences)
- He said that he had seen him at the railway station last Tuesday.
- The manager had achieved the target until the last quarter.
- She had mopped the floor when I got home.
- The match had finished when I switched on the TV.
- I had never tasted such delicious ice cream before.
- The train had left before I reached the station.
- We had taken dinner before the storm came.
- He had not heard that news till yesterday.
- I had never seen such a beautiful scene before.
- She had already finished her work before her friend came.
- She said that her friend had betrayed her.
- He said that he had seen him at the hill station.
- I had already answered the mail before the boss came.
- The building had burned down before the fire brigade arrived.
- He had already bought the tickets before the match began.
- He had already sold the horse before I received the information.
- I had reached there before the rain started.
- The patient had recovered until last week.
- I had completed my graduation before I got a job.
- The accident victim had breathed his last before he reached the hospital.
- He had just left when I called his house.
- It transpired that he had not done anything till yesterday.
- The rain had stopped before I reached home.
- The farmer had reaped the harvest before the storm came.
- She said that she had participated in the contest last year.
- The student had completed the assignment before the teacher came.
- When he reached the party, all his friends had already gone home.
- Tom and Sara had been married for seven years when they divorced.
- He had broken his leg in a car accident.
- What had he done to protect himself from the virus?
Read also: 12 Verb Tenses with Examples