Excercises in Verb Tense
Crime is rampant in South Africa. In each of the following paragraphs borrowed from ficticious police reports, some of the sentences contain errors in verb tense. See if you can identify ALL of them.
1. The following paragraph contains six errors in verb tense.
Recently in Johannesburg, Thabo Msebi, a night watchman, deposit 50 cents in a street vending machine and reach in to get a packet of chips. When the machine catch his hand, he pull out his gun and shoot the machine twice. The second shot sever some wires, and he got his hand out.
2. The following paragraph contains six errors in verb tense.
The Christmas Spirit
Mr. Jan Swart, of Sunndyside, pretoria, run amok in his house in December of 2010. He ripped the telephone from the wall, thrown a television set and a tape-deck into the street, smash to bits a three-piece suite, kicked a dresser down the stairs, and torn the plumbing out of the bath. He offer this explanation for his behavior: "I was shock by the over-commercialization of Christmas."
3. The following paragraph contains six errors in verb tense.
Some very remarkable adults are known to have experience quite unremarkable childhoods. English author G.K. Chesterton, for instance, could not read until the age of eight, and he usually finish at the bottom of his class. "If we could opened your head," one of his teachers remark, "we would not find any brain but only a lump of fat." Chesterton eventually become a successful novelist. Similarly, Thomas Edison was label a "dunce" by one of his teachers, and young James Watt was called "dull and inept."
4. The following paragraph contains 10 errors in verb tense.
Leonardo da Vinci's Mona Lisa is the most famous portrait in the history of painting. Leonardo took four years to complete the painting: he begun work in 1503 and finish in 1607. Mona (or Madonna Lisa Gherardini) was from a noble family in Naples, and Leonardo may have paint her on commission from her husband. Leonardo is said to have entertain Mona Lisa with six musicians. He install a musical fountain where the water play on small glass spheres, and he give Mona a puppy and a white Persian cat to play with. Leonardo did what he could to keep Mona smiling during the long hours she sit for him. But it is not only Mona's mysterious smile that has impress anyone who has ever view the portrait: the background landscape is just as mysterious and beautiful. The portrait can be seen today in the Louvre Museum in Paris.
5. The following paragraph contains 10 errors in verb tense.
A bank teller in Cape Town was jilted by his girlfriend and decide the only thing left to do was kill himself. He stolen a car with the idea of crashing it, but the car broken down. He steal another one, but it was too slow, and he barely dent a fender when he crashed the car into a tree. The police arrive and charge the man with auto theft. While being questioned, he stab himself in the chest with a dagger. Quick action by the police officers saved the man's life. On the way to his cell, he jumped out through a third-story window. A pile of beach sand broken his fall. A judge suspends the man's sentence, saying, "I'm sure fate still has something in store for you."