Past simple or Past perfect?

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So there are two actions in one sentence, for example:

"The cat had eaten some fish before it caught a mouse. The cat (drop) the dead mouse in our porch and (go) to look for another mouse."

In the first sentence, I know that we use past perfect to emphasize that one of the actions happened earlier. But in the second sentence, which one is grammatically correct:

"The cat had dropped the mouse and went to look for another mouse."

"The cat dropped the mouse and went to look for another mouse."

The cat dropped the mouse first, but do we have to use past perfect to emphasize that it happened earlier? Or past perfect is unnecessary because the order of the actions are clear?

Thank you in advance for your help.

1 answer


1

I would use the version below. It's describing a sequence of events, and there is no confusion. There is a single subject, cat, and a compound predicate. In your first example, 'The cat had eaten some fish before it caught a mouse', you are describing two separate actions with an indefinate time interval between. The cat had completed the action of eating the fish at some unspecified time before catching a mouse.

 

"The cat dropped the mouse and went to look for another mouse."

link comment answered Sep 30 '13 at 11:57 Lewis Neidhardt Grammarly Fellow

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