to be (was, were)

The simple past tense of the verb to be :

The affirmative form:

I , he , she , it               was

you , we , they              were

Examples:

  • I was in London in 1999.
  • Reza was in London in 1999, too.
  • We were together.
  • She was my girlfriend.

The interrogative form:

was            I , he , she , it ?

were          you , we , they ?

Examples:

  • Were you in London last year ?
  • Was Reza with you ?
  • Were you together ?

The negative form:

I , he , she , it          was not           wasn’t

you , we , they         were not          weren’t

Examples:

  • I wasn’t in Paris in 1999.
  • Reza wasn’t in Paris in 1999.
  • We weren’t in Paris.

Use of the simple past

The simple past is used principally to describe events in the past.

Remember:

1. wasn’t is the short form of was not . You can say either:

  • I was not in Paris, or
  • I wasn’t in Paris.

2. weren’t is the short form of were not. You can say either:

  • we were not in Paris, or
  • we weren’t in Paris.
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