10 examples of Past Perfect Tense Sentences

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The past perfect tense is used to express events that took place before a certain point in the past. It is formed by using the auxiliary verb had and the past participle.

Past Perfect

For example:

writehad written
sleephad slept

It is usually not found alone in a sentence, but together with another past tense expressing an event that occurred between another, earlier event and the present:

David suddenly realised that he had left his wallet on the train.

In the above example, we have two past tenses to distinguish which event happened earlier. David could only have remembered that he had left his wallet on the train after it happened. In the case of this sentence, it can be logically deduced.

If the sentence is less clear, the presence of conjunctions such as before, until, after, which indicate the sequence of events, is helpful.

The following example will show how the use of the past tense changes the meaning of the sentence:

Jane cooked breakfast when we got up.

If the past tense was in the sentence (“had cooked”), it would mean that Jane cooked before they got up. The use of the past simple tense means that Jane cooked after they got up.

In a special article we have prepared many past perfect tense examples.

Past Perfect affirmative construction

10 Examples of Past Perfect Affirmative Sentences

  • I found out that he had used washable paint.
  • I did not have a lot of money because I had lost my job.
  • I had never been to London until today.
  • After she had done her homework, she played football.
  • I didn’t say a word until she had finished her story.
  • He had left when I went to the party.
  • The train had left before I arrived at the station.
  • I had already finished my homework when you called.
  • I had seen this girl once, but I liked her voice.
  • The meeting had already ended when I reached the office.

10 Examples of Past Perfect Negative Sentences

  • I had not ever eaten in this restaurant until this day.
  • I hadn’t ever been to Paris before moving there.
  • She hadn’t had time to explain it before seeing him.
  • He had not lived in London.
  • I had not cleaned my flat before they came.
  • I had not been to the movies for many years when I saw that movie.
  • We had not been here before, so we did not know where to go for lunch.
  • She had not seen her husband for three years when he returned home.
  • We hadn’t ever traveled to Egypt.
  • They hadn’t practiced the trick before they performed it.

10 Examples of Past Perfect Interrogative Sentences

  • Did the students go home after they had visited the library?
  • When had she eaten?
  • Where had she disappeared to?
  • Had you ever been to London before you moved there?
  • Had she done her homework?
  • Had they understood what happened?
  • What had you done before she came in?
  • Who had you seen after you saw the footage?
  • Had Jim taken the spot before we arrived?
  • What had they done to the room after we left?

Other related tenses:

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