Simple Past

Simple Past

Something that has already happened before is shown through the “Simple Past Tense”. The simple past tense emphasizes that the action is already finished.

While speaking or writing something, we generally use “verbs” which help in expressing the state of the actions. There are 12 major verb tenses in English. These tenses are used while speaking to identify the actions that happened in respect of time. In the case of the “Simple Past Tense,” we need to beat off the clock to look at those things that we have already done in past days. 

Simple Past Tense-

“Simple past tense” is used to designate an activity that is finished in the “past” or which is “past” practice. “Simple Past Tense” is also, commonly known, as “past indefinite tense”. Converting into “Simple Past Tense”- 

The convenient way to change a sentence into “simple past tense” is to convert it with the assistance of “helping verbs”. Another thing that one has to keep in mind is that the “verb conjugation” always remains similar. The verb “conjugation” does not depend on the “subject of the sentence”. Now, “verb conjugation” basically refers to changing the “verb” from its “gerund form” in order to match with the “subject” in a particular sentence. The “conjugator” permits the joining of any “verb” as soon as it coincides with a previous “conjugation” model. 

Apart from this, there is a problem regarding “irregular verbs” that can be annoying since there is a matter of prop up and remembering through regular practice. Just for an instance, “be” is converted into “was or were”, “catch” is converted into “caught”, “speak” is converted into “spoke”, “understand” is converted into “understood” and so on. 

First, the speaker needs to take the root form of the verb; for example, “Play”. Adding “ed” or sometimes “d” at the end of the verb, converts the verb into past form. For example, “Play” is a root verb, adding “ed” with the word makes a past form of the action i.e. “Played”. The verbs that end with “e”, by adding “d” the word turn into past form. And the words that end with “y”, adding “ied” or “ed” turn the word into a past form. For example, the past form of “Cry” is “Cried” and the past form of “play” is “played”. These are the basic rules; there are more concepts based on the simple past tense.   

Past Time Expressions-

The better way to understand the “past indefinite tense” or “simple past tense” is by making it logical and transparent from the start. The “simple past tense” is actually used when something starts and finishes in the “past”. The implementation of proper time expressions can assist in this case. 

Modeling the “Simple Past Tense”-

The simple way to self-understand the “simple past tense” is by considering one’s own experiences of past activities. The use of “irregular” and “regular past verbs” is more preferable. The appropriate perception is to combine the “subjects” such as “brother”, “sister”, “friend”, and so on. 

Introducing Negative forms of “Simple Past Tense”-

In order to structure the “negative” of a “sentence” in the “Simple Past Tense”, one needs to apply the “past” form of the “auxiliary verb” that is “do”. “Do” can further, help in the formation of negative “Simple Past tense” or “Past indefinite tense”. 

One individual is required to make use of the “past form” of the “auxiliary verb” that is “do” which is first converted into “did”. After that to make it a “negative sentence”, one need to add “not” and the “infinitive” of the verb that one wishes to utilize. As per an example- “I did not play”, “They did not play”. 

Another vital thing is that “did not” is invariable and does not change whatever the pronoun is used. A similar rule is put in for “irregular verbs”, just for example, “We did not come”. Another example of a common “irregular verb” is “She did not go to school yesterday”. 

Now, in the case of “regular verbs” the same method is used, for example, “She did not talk to Rosy last week”. Some more examples are “Tim did not play cricket when he was at college”, “Shefali did not work yesterday as she was ill”, “They did not study English in 2018” and so on. 


As the simple past tense is used to explain the actions that already happened in the past and are completed. Here are some of the examples that will help to understand the simple past tense clearly.

“Sneha played Baseball”- this sentence says that Sneha has started and already finished the game. She is not playing the game right now. 

Another example is “He went to the park” – as per this statement, the action of the person is already completed. The past form of “Go” is used here. 


Among 12 major tenses in the English language, simple past tense is used to convey a state of action that is already completed in the past. It denotes an action that has stopped happening in the past and has no direct effect on the present. One should be careful in the proper use of context and conjugation of verbs so that no misuse is made of tense.