Present Perfect

The Present Perfect is constructed by using the verb "have" in the Present Simple as an auxiliary and the Past Participle form of the verb. 

+ Subject + Have/Has + Particple + Object

 - Subject + Have not/Has not (Haven't/Hasn't) + Participle + Object

? Have/Has + Subject + Have/Has + Participle + Object?

The Participle form of the verb has no change so it is the auxiliary that changes with the subject. 

I / you / we / you / they : Have

he / she / it : Has


We use the Present Perfect to talk about:

  • experiences in the past:

I have been to Madrid

  • without specific reference to time


A) I have been to Madrid

B) I went to Madrid last year 

  • expereinces that have an impact on the present

He has hurt his arm (It still hurts now)

We have eaten too much (We still feel full now)

There are some words we can use with the Present Perfect that can add furthe rinformation or meaning to the tense. These "magic words" are discussed here

Spelling notes for the Particple form

The vast majority of verbs have a regular structure so the participle is formed by adding -ED to the end of the infinitive. There are some exceptions. 

Irregular verbs are covered here.

Related topics

Further functions of the Present Perfect

The Present Perfect Continuous

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