Past Simple Vs Past Perfect and Past Perfect Continuous (Negative sentences)

Hello, maybe somebody can help and give some ideas. I would like to find out which usages in the given sentences are correct ones:

  1. He couldn’t go **out until he **hadn’t cleaned his room.
  2. He couldn’t go out until he had cleaned his room.

  3. Peter did not leave for work until he hadn’t shoveled the snow from the drive.

  4. Peter did not leave for work until he had shoveled the snow from the drive.

  5. John hadn’t left the house by the time the postman delivered a parcel to him.

  6. John didn’t leave the house by the time the postman hadn’t delivered a parcel to him.
  7. John didn’t leave the house by the time the postman had delivered a parcel to him.

  8. Tyler hadn’t been hoping to get any front row for the last several weeks until the ticket sales ended.

The situations must be taken from a grammar book and found on the internet.
According to the author, the correct answers are 1, 4, 5.
Maybe some other sentences are correct too. What about 8?
Thank you.

Comments

  • DavidCrosbieDavidCrosbie ✭✭✭

    @irmantasgn

    1. He couldn’t go out until he hadn’t cleaned his room.

    This is grammatical but the meaning is very strange indeed. It only makes sense in this context:

    He was told that he must not clean his room.
    On Monday he cleaned his room, so he wasn't allowed to go out.
    On Tuesday he cleaned his room, so again he wasn't allowed to go out.
    Finallly on Wednesday he was allowed to go out because he hadn't cleaned his room.

    1. He couldn’t go out until he had cleaned his room.

    This is grammatical and makes sense.

    1. Peter did not leave for work until he hadn’t shoveled the snow from the drive.

    Like [1] this is grammatical, but makes little sense. The only context I can think of is:

    On Monday, Peter shovelled snow from the drive. But then he was so tired that he stayed at home and didn't leave for work.
    On Tuesday the same thing happened.
    But on Wednesday he felt strong enough to drive to work, because he hadn't made himself tired by shovelling snow from the drive.

    1. Peter did not leave for work until he had shoveled the snow from the drive.

    This is grammatical, and makes sense. But I think it sounds odd.
    Perhaps it would be better with the word after.

    Peter did not leave for work until after he had shovelled the snow from the drive.

    Better still, use couldn't

    Peter couldn't leave for work until he had shovelled the snow from the drive.

    1. John hadn’t left the house by the time the postman delivered a parcel to him.

    I don't think by the time is possible here. The rest of the sentence is OK.
    John hadn’t left the house when the postman delivered a parcel to him.

    1. John didn’t leave the house by the time the postman hadn’t delivered a parcel to him.

    Even if we change by the time to when, the sentence doesn't make sense.
    John didn’t leave the house when the postman hadn’t delivered a parcel to him.

    7 . John didn’t leave the house by the time the postman had delivered a parcel to him.

    I think this is completely ungrammatical.

    1. Tyler hadn’t been hoping to get any front row for the last several weeks until the ticket sales ended.

    There's something missing — probably the word seats
    Tyler hadn’t been hoping to get any front row seats
    This is grammatical, but the rest of the sentence is much too strange.

    • for the last several weeks
      The two expression don't mix. It's OK to say
      for several weeks
      or
      for the last few weeks
      Both phrases express how long Tyler had been hoping. It makes more sense to say
      seats for performances in the final weeks

    • until the ticket sales ended
      This is grammatical but very strange It means that when tickets sales ended, then miraculously Tyler would be able to get some front-row seats for a performance (or performances) in the final weeks.

    Of all the sentences, only [2] is grammatical, sensible and stylistically natural. Sentence [4] is grammatical and sensible, though it sounds less natural.

    The other sentences are all nonsensical — mostly because of the wrong use of until or by the time.

  • Thank you very much for your help.

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