Unit 1.1

Present Perfect Negative

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Introduction

The present perfect is a tense used to express completed actions which have occurred in the past, but are connected to the present and still have effects on it.

When expressed in its negative form, the verb denies something about the subject.

Form

The present perfect, in its negative form, has this structure:
Subject + have/has + not + past participle + …

  • Have/has: the third person singular changes from have to has;
  • Regular past participles are formed by adding -d or -ed to the base form of verbs;
  • Irregular past participles have to be learned by heart.
Subject have/has + not Past Participle
I/You have not worked
He/She/It has not worked
We/You/They have not worked

Short forms of the negative form are: I haven’t – you haven’t – she hasn’t…

Example

  1. I haven’t been elected yet.
    You haven’t heard from him. 
    He hasn’t done his homework.
    We haven’t studied for the exam. 
  2. I haven’t been to Rome.
    You‘ve never travelled abroad.
    He hasn’t visited this museum.
    They haven’t travelled without their computer.

Use

We use present perfect, in its negative form, to deny something about:

  1. past situations with results in the present;
  2. finished actions referring to life experience up to now.

Summary

We use the present perfect, in the negative form, to deny completed actions which have occurred in the past, are connected to the present and still have effects on it.

When we use the present perfect in its negative form, we start with the subject, followed by have not and a past participle. In the third person singular, we use has not.

NOTE: The past participle is usually used to form the perfect tenses, and it indicates past or completed actions. It is formed by adding -d or -ed to the base form of regular verbs, whereas irregular verbs have different fixed forms which need to be studied off by heart.

For example:
— “She hasn’t worked on an important project this morning.” = We use the present perfect because the past action still has effects on the present (for example, she hasn’t gained fame in her field).
♦ “She didn’t work on an important project yesterday.” = We use the past simple because the past action is finished and there is no need to emphasise its effects on the present.

Let’s revise this content within the {Form} section. Take a look at the {Example} section that shows its use within a context.

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