Finding the correct tense

English grammar questions, answered by Alan

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Finding the correct tense

Post by DutchStudent »

Hi Allen,

I'm having a disagreement with my professor about the tense of this sentence:

First, a nanoparticle would be synthesized on a small scale.

He says it isn't in the proper past tense required for scientific reports.
However, I differ in that it does refer to something in the past.
Both of us aren't native speakers, so I'm not sure what the tense is.
Could you tell me what the tense is + possibly a reference I could use where this is explained?
Thanks in advance!

Groeten Jan
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Re: Finding the correct tense

Post by Alan »

Despite not being a 'tense' in the strictest sense, would (DO) is a possible form for referring to repeated/habitual past events, as in

When I was young, I would take a brisk walk every morning before breakfast.

However, for events that occurred only once, it is not appropriate.