• Ana Audi

Past Simple x Past Continuous

Nesse post, vou falar sobre Passado Simples e Passado Contínuo.

O post está 100% em inglês pra você aprender dentro do método da imersão. Isso acelera o seu aprendizado! Evite traduzir frases inteiras em ferramentas como Google Tradutor. Pesquise apenas as palavras que você realmente não sabe e tente entender a frase.

Usar o tradutor é trapacear você mesmo!

Quando houver uma situação em que você deve comparar, pare, leia atentamente e tente entender de fato a diferença do sentido das frases.


Past Simple (Passado Simples)


Wolgang Amadeus Mozart was an Austrian musician and composer. He lived from 1756 to 1791. He started composing at the age of five and wrote more than 600 pieces of music. He was only 35 years old when he died.

Very often the past simple ends in ed (regular verbs): • I work in a travel agency now. Before that I worked in a shop. • We invited them to our party, but they decided not to come.

• The police stopped me on my way home last night. • She passed her examination because she studied very hard.

But many verbs are irregular.The past simple does not end in ed.

For example:

• Write - wrote - Mozart wrote more than 600 pieces of music. • See - saw - We saw Rose in town a few days ago. • Go - went - I went to the cinema three times last week. • Shut - shut - It was cold, so I shut the window.

In questions and negatives we use did/didn’t + infinitive.

• Did you go out last night? • Yes, I went to the cinema. • Did you enjoy the film? • No, I didn’t enjoy the film very much.

• When did Mr Thomas die? • They didn’t invite her to the party. • Did you have time to write the letter?

• What did you do at the weekend? • I didn’t do anything.

Verb to be

As you already know, verb to be is the only one verb that has different forms in the past. I was angry because they were late. Was the weather good when you were on holiday?

They weren’t able to come because they were busy.


Also, we don't use did/didn't and verb to be together. They can be in the same sentence if we have a conjunction.

Did you go out last night or were you too tired?


Past Continuous (Passado Contínuo)

Yesterday Karen and Jim played tennis.They began at 10 o’clock and finished at 11:30.

So, at 10:30 they were playing tennis.

I/he/she/it + was + _____ing We/you/they + were + _____ing

We use the past continuous to say that somebody was in the middle of doing something at a certain time.The action or situation had already started before this time but had not finished.

This time last year I was living in Australia.

What were you doing at 10 o’clock last night?

I waved to her but she wasn’t looking.

Compare the past continuous and past simple:

Past Continuous: I was walking home when I met Dave. Mary was watching television when the phone rang.


Past Simple: I walked home after the party last night. Mary watched television a lot when she was a child.

We often use the past simple and the past continuous together to say that something happened in the middle of something else: Tom burnt his hand when he was cooking. I saw you in the park yesterday.You were sitting on the grass and reading a book.

I hurt my back while I was working in the garden.

But we use the past simple to say that one thing happened after another: I was walking along the road when I saw Dave. So I stopped and we had a chat.


Compare: When Karen arrived, we were having dinner.

When Karen arrived, we had dinner.

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