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Lesson 6 - 5

That's perfect!

Now we're gonna learn a new verb tense. It's one of the most perfect tenses of them all, namely the present perfect! Many languages do not have a tense similar to this one, but English does, and that's good, because this tutorial is in English. Some examples of the present perfect tense in English are:

  • I have been to Norway.
  • Have you seen that movie?
  • He has never skied before.

As you see, it consists in two verbs that are combined:

have/has + another verb

"Have" is called the auxiliary, while the other verb is the main verb. The main verb is the one that carries the meaning.

The meaning of the present perfect tense is very similar to the past tense, which we learned in the previous lesson. Someone who is not totally proficient in English might have problems distinguishing the meanings of these two sentences:

  1. I went to Norway.
  2. I have been to Norway.

Both of them refer to the past, so the difference is challenging to explain, but it has to do with the fact that the former focuses on the moment when the action was carried out, while the latter expresses that this past event has relevancy in the present as well.

In Norwegian, the auxiliary verb in the present perfect is the present form of ha: har. This gives us:

har + another verb

The form of the main verb, as was the case with the past tense, must be learned, since there are three different suffixes depending on the verb.'s very easy if you already know the past tense, as you will see in the very next moment!

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