The present tense
) is a grammatical tense
whose principal function is to locate a situation or event in the present time.
The present tense is used for actions which are happening now. In order to explain and understand present tense, it is useful to imagine time as a line on which the past tense
, the present and the future tense
are positioned. The term present tense
is usually used in descriptions of specific languages to refer to a particular grammatical form or set of forms; these may have a variety of uses, not all of which will necessarily refer to present time. For example, in the English
sentence "My train leaves tomorrow morning", the verb form leaves
is said to be in the present tense, even though in this particular context it refers to an event in future time. Similarly, in the historical present
, the present tense is used to narrate events that occurred in the past.
There are two common types of present tense form in most Indo-European languages
: the present indicative
(the combination of present tense and indicative mood
) and the present subjunctive
(the combination of present tense and subjunctive mood). The present tense is mainly classified into four parts:
- Simple present
- Present perfect
- Present continuous
- Present perfect continuous
The present indicative of most verbs in modern English
has the same form as the infinitive, except for the third-person
singular form, which takes the ending -[e]s
. The verb be
has the forms am
. For details see English verbs
. For the present subjunctive, see English subjunctive
Use of the present tense does not always imply the present time. In particular, the present tense is often used to refer to future events (I am seeing James tomorrow
; My train leaves at 3 o'clock this afternoon
). This is particularly the case in condition
clauses and many other adverbial subordinate clauses: If you see him,...
; As soon as they arrive...
There is also the historical present
, in which the present tense is used to narrate past events.
Modern Greek present indicative tense
In Modern Greek
, the present tense is used in a similar way to the present tense in English and can represent the present continuous
as well. As with some other conjugations in Greek, some verbs in the present tense accept different (but equivalent) forms of use for the same person. What follows are examples of present tense conjugation in Greek for the verbs βλέπω
(eat) and αγαπώ
The Romance languages are derived from Latin
, and in particular western Vulgar Latin
. As a result, their usages and forms are similar.
Latin present indicative tense
present tense can be translated as progressive or simple present. Here are examples of the present indicative tense conjugation in Latin
French present indicative tense
The present indicative is commonly used to express the present continuous. For example, Jean mange may be translated as John eats, John is eating. To emphasise the present continuous, expressions such as "en train de" may be used. For example, Jean est en train de manger may be translated as John is eating, John is in the middle of eating. On est en train de chercher un nouvel appartement may be translated as We are looking for a new apartment, We are in the process of finding a new apartment.
Italian present indicative tense
, the present tense is used similarly to that of English. What follows is an example of present indicative tense conjugation in Italian
Portuguese and Spanish present indicative tense
Bulgarian present indicative tense
, the present indicative tense of imperfective verbs is used in a very similar way to the present indicative in English. It can also be used as present progressive. Below is an example of present indicative tense conjugation in Bulgarian.
*Archaic, no infinitive in the modern language.
Macedonian present tense
The present tense of the Macedonian language
is made of the imperfective verbs. The following table shows the conjugation of the verbs write
) and open
Last edited on 1 June 2021, at 19:23
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