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Section 11.3.1.1

Simple Present Tense

Use the simple present tense to express facts, statesof being, or actions that are occurring now or that occur regularly.

Some common adverbs that typically appear with thesimple present are always, frequently, often,sometimes, and usually.


When icebergs calve off heavy glaciers, the broken facesare always blue.

--"Take It or Leave It," Valley Comic News

As rain-swollen streams flow into a lake behind a dam, thereis a buildup of potential energy, which can be transformedinto kinetic energy as water is harnessed to flow down achute.

--C. Donald Ahrens, Meteorology Today


When you use the simple present tense, be careful to use the correct verb formso that you do not produce a subject-verb agreementerror.

Use the simple present tense when reporting or summarizing another author'swords.


In his book The Universe, Isaac Asimov seeksto trace the steps by which mankind's grasp of the universe widened anddeepened.

You can also use the simple present tense to express future actions that arescheduled to occur. Some verbs that are commonly used in the simple present toexpress the future are arrive, begin, close, come, end, finish, leave, open,return, and start.


The spring term begins in January next year.


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